'Stephen Collins cartoons are like a lovely, spicy dumpling' – What Inspires Me, with Kindred's Chris Bamford

The creative director at Kindred reveals what stirs his creative mind.

'Stephen Collins cartoons are like a lovely, spicy dumpling' – What Inspires Me, with Kindred's Chris Bamford

Sharing a cheese toastie

To quote Lou Reed: I’m waiting for my man. And I’m thinking about what to put in this column – smart, but not too smart-arse, etc. I have a cheese toastie, halved, on the bench next to me. Then my man arrives: a fellow creative, East London resident, human. A walking cliché like me. But he’s not me. He has a different life experience, belief system, education, family, friends, Netflix profile etc. And that’s why – when we chat about each other’s briefs – he always makes my work better (and, I’m told, visa versa).

This a convoluted way of saying we need human contact and conversation, debate and validation to make better work. That’s hard at the moment, but seek out your humans and meet regularly – physically or virtually.

“I’m lactose intolerant,” he says. I did know that… I grab his half.

Saturday Night Live

I, like many, have been turning to cinema’s classics for some solace in 2020. And by classics, I mean Ghostbusters, Beverly Hills Cop, Caddyshack… all of which were birthed by SNL.

Ackroyd, Chappelle, Chase, Ferrell, Fey, Murphy, Murray, Poehler, Silverman, Wiig (and the new heart-throbby, druggy one) are all alumni of the show that A-listers beg to flex their funny bones on. And have done for 4.5 decades. Now let’s all spare a thought for Alec Baldwin’s ongoing relevance.

The 'Outlook Quit' drop-down tab…

... or ‘Quit Microsoft Teams’ tab, or any other chat notification. When I shut down these programs I get an adrenalin rush, because I know I’m going to be spending the next hour doing the bit of the job I enjoy: ideas. “Eureka Wayne!”, is not something I have ever shouted when our IT crowd announces that Paprika is now on my mobile. This undoubtedly important type of missive has never once unlocked hitherto untouched recesses of my cortex – nor led to a pitch-winning idea, multiple awards and house in the Bahamas. Hit ‘Quit’.

Stephen Collins

Stephen Collins cartoons are like a lovely, spicy dumpling – you know, like gyoza. Their aesthetic is basic but their hit is pure Class A. You gulp them down, they take no more that 20 seconds to imbibe, and you immediately want more. You realise Itsu doesn't serve them in the quantities you crave. You try to recreate them at home – maybe at a dinner party, but your guests are unimpressed. You simply can’t do them justice. So you start queuing outside your Budgens at 4am on Saturday to get your Guardian Weekend. And you message him more than once, maybe you could become friends? Then he blocks you.

Beats in Space

Another NYC institution in my eyes (well, ears) is Tim Sweeney’s weekly showcase for the world’s most discerning DJs, selectors, musicians and producers: Beats In Space. When I turn off the incessant notification pinging, I turn Sweeney’s repetitive beats on and up. Tim blocked me back in 06.

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