A close-up of a shelf full of books; the image is blurred intentionally

A PortsConsort Update – 09 May 2017

Hello, everyone.

By now, you’ll have noticed that The Portsmouth and Southsea Consortium has slowed down somewhat this year; well, it’s not our intention to keep anyone in the dark about things, so please read the rest of this post for a little update on a few things

As you know, The Portsmouth and Southsea Consortium is a part-time and voluntary community that’s managed and organised around the existing professional and personal commitments of its co-founders. Due to changes in these over the last six months, it’s not been possible for us to invest as significant amount of time and resources into its development as we’d anticipated previously. As much as we love the Consortium and everything we’ve been able to accomplish both through and with it, it can never be a priority when set against the work that pays the bills or personal matters.

What does this mean, then, going forward? Well, for a start, we’ll be taking things a lot slower over this coming year. We’re going to ask for a lot of patience from those in our creative community as we look at our capacity and scope, and discuss more sustainable models of community management that are responsive to our needs as well as yours, and enable us to fulfil as many of those Consortium goals we’ve set for ourselves as possible.

One of the things we’ve already discussed, and agreed on, is that we’ll not be able to undertake the organisation and management of any events for the foreseeable future. We’re currently planning no markets, and we don’t anticipate being in any position to offer an Etsy Made Local opportunity for our Etsy team this coming Christmas. We hope that everyone will be able to find events and markets that best help them develop themselves and their businesses, and will happily promote our community members’ involvement elsewhere – so make sure you tell us!

We’ve also had a couple of questions relating to the PortsConsort Professional Development Survey 2017 that took place earlier in the year. We remain grateful to all those who took part in the survey and remain committed to finding a way to use these results to provide opportunities for PDP and CPD in areas identified at some (hopefully, not too distant) point in the future. The analysis of the results has to now take place on an ad hoc basis, however, meaning that a final outcome may still be a while away.

One of the things we’ve been asked about a lot is community meet-ups. Later on the year, it might be possible for us to organise one or two, but we honestly don’t know right now. What we’ll say is that there are other opportunities in and around our local community to meet and network with other creative practitioners (such as the wonderful Portsmouth Freelancers Meet), and we would encourage you to make full use of these. You all know, also, that those who are part of our Facebook group often share the benefit of their experience and expertise, so make sure you remain connected with one another there – you’ve helped turn our social media platforms into a valuable resource that we wouldn’t want you to forget.

We’ll continue to work on the monthly PortsConsort Postcards. They’re an enjoyable series to write, and allow us to put questions out there for our wider creative community to think about or discuss. Plus, they help keep us connected to the Consortium and its work. If you’ve an idea for one – or, indeed, would like to write one – let us know and we’ll see what we can sort out. We’d love to share what you have to say!

Work on the Consortium both requires a very specific type of administrative commitment and relies often on contributions from community members or third parties to carry out work supporting its aims and objectives; this means that we may have time and resources to work on other personal or professional projects at the same time as it becomes impossible for us to make progress with something for the Consortium. We would ask our community members to acknowledge that our participation in other endeavours is never done at the expense of Consortium work. We simply can’t work on everything in the same way all the time, and can’t reject opportunities to make advances in other areas when these present themselves.

We’re happy to continue showcasing and supporting members of our local creative community, and would ask you to continue getting in touch if there’s something you’d like us to share for you, or if you think there’s something with which we can help; you know that if we can’t, we’ll try to point you in the direction of someone who may be able to. Drop by on our Facebook group, Facebook page, Instagram, Pinterest or Twitter, or even send us an (old-fashioned) e-mail. We’ll look forward to hearing from you, and will make sure to keep you updated as and when things change.

Speak soon,

Roberta and Tom
Co-founders, The Portsmouth and Southsea Consortium

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