What was your role at Opportunity Green?
I was lucky enough to be the Creative Manager and have the pleasure of collaborating with a team of talented individuals and organizations, including global design firm Gensler, to help Opportunity Green create a visually stimulating environment for attendees that enhanced their learning and networking experience.
Tell us a bit about your recent publicity.
Currently, I’m featured in Angeleno Interiors magazine which discusses how I combine an eco focus with great style, shares some of my favorite sustainable design sources and includes a nice mention of OG. I’m also doing some TV and will be in 2 episodes of a new show on HGTV called Design Wars and an episode of House Crashers which airs on DIY and then on HGTV. I look forward to doing a lot more of this as it’s a great way for me to share how easy it is for others to design sustainably.
What were the major themes and design concepts for Opportunity Green?
Along with Gensler, a Presenting Sponsor for the 3rd year, we designed unique elements, unexpected for a business conference, which interpreted Opportunity Green’s theme of “Accelerate”. Perhaps the most popular element was the interactive sculptural centerpiece, The Tornado, made with reclaimed lumber from Idaho from American Reclaimed. Not only could attendees walk through the inside of The Tornado but they could also interact with it digitally with an Augmented Reality feature from Daqri which engaged attendees to use their smart phones or tablets to see another reality on a digital interface.
Other design elements I brought together included several unique networking lounges like the “Pebble Garden” with locally made pebble shaped seating from EIS Studio set against a sculptural backdrop made by local artist Lauri Burrier with perforated metal panels from her husband’s office renovation and reclaimed wood. There was even an art gallery featuring sustainable art and sculpture which was a pleasant surprise for attendees. In addition, Veriflora certified sustainably grown flowers and succulents added just the right touch of adornment to make the spaces feel inviting and extra special. Distinctive lighting featured Aaron Kramer’s chandelier made from re-used water jugs greeting attendees to the main stage area and Bottlehood’s pendants made from used glass bottles added sparkle to the after-party.
Are there any green vendors that worked with Opportunity Green you think are particularly noteworthy?
Yes, absolutely! While I enjoyed working with so many cool green vendors, I’d love to highlight a few in particular. One of them is LA-based furniture company Animavi which offers iconic and timeless pieces designed for longevity. They source manufacturers that practice environmental stewardship and addresses end of life, up-cycling opportunities.
Another LA-based furniture company is Cliff Spencer, who creates custom-designed furniture, custom modern and traditional cabinetry, wood finishing and refinishing. They are experts in sourcing reclaimed and sustainable materials including woods well-known to fine woodworking as well as non-traditional species like mesquite, elm, eucalyptus and sycamore. They search out reclaimed lumber, backyard trees, and lesser known hardwoods, many of which are fast-growing and have positive ecological benefits.
A 3rd noteworthy green vendor is Indo Teak. They manufacture and distribute hardwood Teak flooring, paneling, custom applications, decking, beams, lumber and custom orders, all made from 100% FSC certified reclaimed teak wood, exclusively from Indonesia.
What exhibits, designs, and speakers stood out the most from Opportunity Green?
I enjoyed watching so many enthusiastic, talented and interesting people from various sustainable industries fully immersing themselves in OG11. They shared ideas with each other, made valuable connections, soaked up new information and got inspired.
As for the exhibits, some of the most memorable for me were the beautifully displayed and delicious organic meals served throughout the conference, American Apparel’s colorful and creative booth which included a dozen sewing machines operated by a group of happy staff making t-shirts for attendees, cool jewelry made from re-purposed glass bottles, and the art gallery which provided an unconventional approach for a business conference, to share ideas about sustainability.