As you know, we like to dive deep to gather data so this time we decided to take a few moments by going beyond the bio with our very own Brooke Boyce, resident Research Analyst at Patternmakers.
What exactly do you do at Patternmakers?
As the Research Analyst at Patternmakers, I support our Insight Director to deliver our clients’ projects – from the proposal to methodology design, project management and fieldwork, and analysis and reporting.
We are also creating more of our own content, and launching Patternmakers’ courses and events to inspire the future of arts and culture research – so I’m looking forward to being a part of that, too.
What does your average day look like?
I like to start my work day before the hustle and bustle of the City of Sydney begins. I work best in the morning – and it also means I can have the afternoon off to enjoy the fresh air outside.
No two days are the same at Patternmakers – but an average day (if you can call it average) involves working on multiple project elements – from report writing at my desk in the morning, to co-design workshops during the day, and doing immersive focus groups at night.
When I’m not working on our projects, I am a writer for a quiz show, and for a Western City publication.
What do you love about your job?
What I love about my job now is that we are working with our clients to positively impact the arts and culture space – a space that is so, so important for communities.
Research is continually providing new evidence to back up just how important arts and culture is for us. And I’m really excited to be working on projects this year that will add fuel to this beautifully burning flame.
Tell us your favourite type of cultural experience and why.
Historical museums – there is something magical about old places and old things, and the life they have led! And same goes for art mixed with history – the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam crafted an incredibly moving, spiritual experience through their audio guide that was unforgettable.
Where do you go for inspiration?
I grew up on the water in Queensland, so I tend to go to Bicentennial Park/Blackwattle Bay in Glebe, or to the Botanic Gardens to get my slice of fresh air, green, and water.
Favourite city or the most interesting place you’ve visited or travelled.
My husband and I spent most of 2016 travelling overseas – our absolute favourite places/experiences on our adventure were camping on Vancouver Island, walking the streets of Florence and Rome, and driving around Iceland!
What are you currently reading?
Bolshoi Confidential, a history of the Russian Ballet by Simon Morrison. My grandmother is Russian/Estonian, and I’m interested get a sense of what life in Russia must have been like for my great grandparents before they moved to Australia in the 1920s.
Biggest distraction from productivity?
Our ginger rescue cat Paddington. He put on a little bit of weight with us feeding him treats so he jokingly became Puddington and now he's just Pud.
I was really pleased that Patternmakers could make a donation to Sydney Cats and Dogs Home at the end of 2016.
Happiness (is) only real when shared – Christopher McCandless/Alexander Supertramp
Advice for Arts professionals doing research?
My advice to arts professionals when tackling research is that it’s not as scary as you may think. It’s a bit like a puzzle – you might have the borders, or some random pieces – and what research does is fill in those missing pieces for you to get the bigger picture. And if you break it down, step by step, piece by piece, it can be fun and incredibly rewarding.
As long as you (and your stakeholders) are really, really clear at the beginning on your research purpose, and always go back to those one of two sentences, you will end up with a meaningful and useful piece of research.
About the Author
Patternmakers’ Founder and Managing Director Tandi Williams is an experienced consultant and arts and culture research specialist.
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