Despite some flat out rainy weather and a lower turnout compared to 2016, the recent 2017 Columbus Creative Industry Mixer plowed through its eighth incarnation displaying a spirited share of social fun and frolic at the Park Street Cantina in the Arena District.
Created by photographer Matt Roharik in 2009, the Columbus Creative Industry Mixer (CCIM) was designed to bring together the who's-who of the artistic realm, shaping the creative networking landscape in order to set the standard for combining art and entertainment.
This is never an easy feat to accomplish here in Columbus, as multiple events usually transpire each night, all vying for a voluptuous piece of anyone brave enough to stop watching Netflix, and get their asses off the couch. Let's face it, with all the entertainment available to us via technology, springing into the real world, where people and objects exist beyond the sphere of augmented reality, can sometimes be a paralyzing prospect.
But the CCIM has endured.
Roharik carefully built up CCIM over the years, creating renown with its ground-breaking, elaborately staged, and propped photo booths bringing patrons together. At one time, with annual attendance nearing 1000, the CCIM was a not to be missed event amongst art directors, designers, area personalities, stylists, models, photographers, actors, musicians, talent agents, and print, film, music, and television producers.
Hell, the entire community showed up, just to be a part of the CCIM magic at Roharik's old studio. Part work, but always exceedingly pleasurable, the CCIM carved out an inestimable, devoted niche among participants, sponsors, and advertisers.
With guidance from Roharik, who currently resides in Los Angeles, the CCIM8 was produced by community leaders Mary McNitt, Shelagh Conley, and Mark J. Suplicki. Video support was provided by LeFine Print, with music by DJ Barista and DJ Harok.
Covering the CCIM has traditionally been a standard for NID Magazine, and the Columbus Events Guide. We have provided marketing support services through our print and digital platforms, with a focus on photography of the event as an entity, with particular attention paid to all those attending. This year was no different, and outside of the images seen in this post, you can check out more here, by photographers Tony Bentivegna, Robert Berry, and Breck Hapner.
Highlights from the CCIM8 included a joint production fostered through Tommy McClure, showcasing Fashion Week Columbus 2016 designers Juan Jose Saenz-Ferreyros (support courtesy of Bill Bartolini), Gerardo Encinas, and Melissa Koch, with additions courtesy of Joan's Bridal Couture line, and guidance to the designers and models provided by Erin Maloney.
Auction items were vetted by CCIM8 MC Erik Sternberger, who studied sketch writing and improv at the legendary Second City Chicago. His production company, Apathetic Revolutionary, creates comedy shorts and original scripts winning awards at film festivals around the country.
In addition to 100 tickets provided by Shadowbox Live to the first 50 VIP guests, items were donated by Couture Lash Columbus (Kristie Rhodes), Airbrush Tans Ohio, Red Giraffe Designs, Kixson Creative, and Camelot Cellars. In equal measure, Photoserve PDN stepped up to the plate with an $800 photographers package.
Yes, the treats are nice, but that's not it, really. You see, it is all about belief, a faith in people — people from creative backgrounds and disciplines — coming together to celebrate their combined uniqueness, the totality of their originality. This is what CCIM has always been about, and must be made to accomplish again moving forward.
Sure, CCIM is also about meeting talent, and building the legitimacy of your business through the positive exposure of your brand. We all throw around terms like measurable data, targeted demographics, emotional triggers, boosted response levels, higher conversion rates, and print and digital analytics. Yowza, yowza, punka.
There are many more industry terms, relevant to each discipline. Seemingly poignant, all with attached sub meanings according to their contextual application, folks. In the end, of course, we all want results, we seek a succinct and concise ROI. We all want — and much more — need the sanctity of individual creative success amidst the process.
CCIM was unique because once upon a time, it achieved this, embodied this, and so much more.
The 2017 CCIM8 event proved, beyond a doubt, that Columbus Creatives are still seeking that ideal, and are willing to embrace a higher standard for the future. NID Magazine and the Columbus Events Guide were proud to sponsor this year's CCIM, and are issuing a call to our community:
Work with us to make the CCIM9 bridge the gap between enfranchisement and enlightenment.
About Breck Hapner
Managing Editor Breck Hapner covers every facet of the Columbus nightlife, entertainment, festival, music, food & drink, art, film, and fashion scene, while also being known to pen articles, reviews, editorials, and even photograph from time to time.