Multi-Disciplinary Soup

Disjointed Business Model

© 2014 Roger Overall

Note: There is too much me in this post. Just saying that upfront. You’re better off going straight here: Chris Brogan.

If you’re a creative, you can probably turn your hand to more than one thing. Seems to me, anyway. I’ve yet to meet a creative who couldn’t. You may have one thing you excel at, maybe even two. You probably wouldn’t embarrass yourself in a couple of other arenas either. That’s good thing. It’s also a tricky thing to manage. Continue reading


The Best Coffee Shop in Ireland*

I’m torn.

Should I tell you about this superb coffee place or not?

If I do, you’ll know about my favourite den. You’ll go there. You’ll love it. You’ll sit on my favourite stool and I’ll never be able to get rid of you.

At the same time, I want the wonderful people who run it to succeed. I want the place to do healthy business so that I can go there for many more years. So I shouldn’t keep it to myself. That wouldn’t do them (and by association, me) any good. Continue reading

Behind the Pixels, Podcast

Behind the Pixels – Episode 8 – David Bailey and Vlogging

David Bailey produces great storytelling videos about life in Bosnia. His engaging films are produced using nothing more than a smartphone and a few apps. He likes to keep things simple. He also likes to keep the time he invests in producing films to a minimum.

In this episode of Behind the Pixels, he talks about telling appealing stories using smartphone video. He also gives tips about overcoming self-confidence or notions that your story isn’t worth telling.


How to Make Yourself Look Good by Making Someone Else Look Great

As storytellers (for ourselves, for our businesses) we face many challenges. Not least of which is that nobody is waiting for us to tell them just how smashing we are. “We’re dynamite, don’t you agree?” is a pretty thin storyline. Nevertheless, it’s one that many businesses peddle. After a while, the world merely shrugs its shoulders and moves on to more interesting things.

One way to overcome this is to shine the spotlight on someone else.

Take a look at the video here. Watch it all the way through because there is a relevant question coming up.


Continue reading


Video: The 12-Mile Menu

What does “local” mean to you?

The Oxford Dictionary defines local as “relating or restricted to a particular area or one’s neighbourhood”. That’s fairly inconclusive. Other dictionaries are equally obtuse.

I’m just as bad. I merely have a sense of “local”. It feels local if it’s within a 20-minute drive. More or less.

That makes it hard to talk about local food. Where do you draw the boundary between local and regional?

It’s not like we don’t have enough issues with labelling as it is. Let’s not get into what “Irish” food is.

A solution

Kevin Aherne, who owns Sage Restaurant in Midleton, Co. Cork, has provided his own answer. For him, local falls within a 12-mile radius of the restaurant. It’s an arbitrary line, but as good as any I think. It gives him an anchor for his menu at any rate.

Going this route is a huge commitment. Kevin has to get to know all of his suppliers individually and build a relationship with each in turn. Instead of a single centralized delivery, he has many. It is a time-consuming process.

His approach has advantages though. Buying from suppliers within 12 miles of the restaurant enhances accountability. He knows exactly where each ingredient has come from. He can vet it, keeping standards high. He can ask questions of his suppliers.

He can also get their stories and pass those on to his own customers. These days, there is benefit in being able to name the farmer who raised your beef or your pork, and being able to tell you about the man who runs the abattoir where the animals were slaughtered. Through stories, trust is built. Trust that what Kevin puts on a plate for you is wholesome as well as delicious.

Maybe that’s something local gives us: trust. We trust it because we know where it came from and we know who produced it.


Video: Smoked Salmon by the Burren Smokehouse

The Burren Smokehouse in Lisdoonvarna, Co. Clare, is one of Ireland’s best fish smokers. Good enough to for its salmon to be served to the President of Ireland and the Queen of England any way.

I’d worked with Birgitta, who runs the smokehouse, before – producing a series of documentary photographs. At the time, I thought it was hard work. Getting up at 3AM to photograph master smoker Peadar Reilly working his magic on the fish: filletting, salting and prepping the smoker with oak shavings. I mean, 3AM. It’s ungodly. No wonder it’s known as the Devil’s Hour. Continue reading


Video: Brill with Truffled Savoy Cabbage and Crispy Bacon

Chef Barry McLaughlin cooks some pretty special stuff. I once ate close to his entire Poacher’s Inn menu during a photo shoot. (Photography may be not be as well paid as it once was, but there are still perks – though I should stop wondering why my waistline won’t shift).

Barry speaks beautifully about his food and the thinking behind it. Watching him work is mesmerising. He moves fluidly and quickly, producing sumptuousness in minutes.

On Wednesday, we spent some time together and came up with this:

Brill with Truffled Savoy Cabbage and Crispy Bacon from Roger Overall on Vimeo.