The title of this upcoming project defines the pillars of its content:

PRESENT as
A Celebration of the Now. A platform to present fascinating contemporaries from all fields — their work, their ideas and their strategies of how to survive and thrive in the 21st century.

PRESENT as
A Gift. It’s about generosity and transparency, not hiding what we've got but sharing knowledge, ideas, experiences.

PRESENT as
A Reminder to be present and aware. It's about powerful methodologies for finding focus in the beautiful chaos of our world, and the importance of acting in the very moment.

PRESENT as
A Manifesto for collaboration and inclusiveness. It’s about bringing people together and learning from each other — in the future, but more importantly in the here and now.


“Real generosity towards the future lies in giving all to the present.”

Albert Camus

BACKGROUND
Welcome to  PRESENT.  This is a personal project I’m putting in a lot of energy right now, and I thank you for being here.

I started getting deeper into the psychology of work, the creative process and the power of habits while I was still studying — and on the edge of  burning out . I always had big ambitions with a hundred projects and interests at once.

How can we  balance it all  without driving ourselves crazy? How can we live life to the fullest — and at the same time be present to do our best work — despite the turbulent times and a million distractions around us?
This question drives me.

The challenges and tragedies in my own life helped me grow.
I’m not a guru or an expert, but what I’ve learned in my life so far I want to share. I’m just grateful, want to make positivity louder and  build things.

My journey to become better in my craft as a designer took me around the globe and I was lucky to meet many fascinating characters who became  friends and mentors  along the way. I want to build on those relationships.

So now — next to running my independent design studio — I’m going to create a  platform and community  to collaborate with great people to explore these topics and many more.

Whoever and wherever you are, come with me on this journey and
STAY PRESENT

—  Hugo Hoppmann
CHAPTERS
 
PRESENT Chapters are weekly updates on the process and progress of this project.
 
Chapter 04
DON'T BE BITTER,
BE BETTER
It's been too long since the last update but I'm finally back at it after some intense weeks of work and traveling. I started this chapter a couple weeks ago on the plane to New York, crammed into my seat, barely moving, only my fingers hastily hovering over the keyboard …

Late one night about a year ago when I was still living in NYC I made the decision to pull PRESENT out of my "favorite unrealized projects" drawer and give it a go. It equally excited and scared me — always a good sign to go ahead and do it.

A lot happened in one year. I found an apartment in Berlin with more space to reflect and tinker. I decided to work more independently again, with my own clients and more control over my time and my voice, to be able to do my own thing more thoroughly.

IT DOESN’T MATTER HOW SLOWLY YOU GO, AS LONG AS YOU DON’T STOP. Getting this project to where I want it to be is a slow process — but at least it’s moving forward steadily. And that’s the important thing. I can’t lose momentum again.

I recently gave a workshop at Bauhaus University in Weimar titled MY FAVORITE UNREALIZED PROJECT — I talked with the students about all the projects we dream of realizing one day, and what’s holding us back. Everyone had to design a motivational poster (by hand) around their project visualizing their inspirations, doubts, hopes and ultimate action steps toward actual realization.

I’m teaching what I want to get better at myself. PRESENT is still my own favorite unrealized project — but I’m working very hard to make it as real as possible as fast as I can.
Chapter 03
PRIORITIZE UNTIL
IT HURTS
Everyday I’m writing, accumulating ‘grandiose‘ plans and concepts. But I feel that all the beautiful ideas in the world don’t matter until they get executed — and ultimately manifest into something of actual use to others.

But that’s also what makes executing ideas hard — once they left the save place of your head or notebook they can be judged and criticized. Still better and more interesting than being hidden away. I’m sick of great ideas that go nowhere.

Even though I’m still not sure if a lot of people are interested in my vision or the things and people I want to feature and push — all I know is that I have to do it, no matter what. But more on that another day.

For now, these are the things that I’m trying to put in out in the next weeks to push this project forward:

1. A concise presentation/document that contains, pinpoints, clarifies the core ideas and ambitions of PRESENT to be sent out to future contributors, collaborators and interview partners. (It’s an ambitious and exciting list!)

2. A catalogue of specific and unique questions for upcoming recorded conversations. The questions I’m mostly interested in are rarely appear in classic interviews. They are going to be always respectful but highly personal, and at first sight often banal, but tremendously insightful.

3. PRESENT clothing and merch. Super excited about that. I want to build a brand again — that’s just one of my favorite things to do. Ultimately these products could become a great tool for people to support and sponsor the project.
Chapter 02
TOO MANY IDEAS,
NOT ENOUGH ACTION
“Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.“

I had a hard time focusing on PRESENT these past two weeks. Too many too urgent projects with real deadlines, real budgets, and many promises to be kept.

Sometimes my deepest wish is to pause time and freeze the world around me for a few hours, so that I can get all things done in peace, with no interruptions, and no rush. We all want more time. But it’s the same amount of hours a day for everyone. How are even busier people with more responsibility than you and me able to fully focus and get important things done, despite the craziness of life?

PRIORITIZE UNTIL IT HURTS.

It sounds harsh and brutal. And it is. Because it’s about being calm and staying with ONE task, despite a hundred other ‘important‘ tasks lurking behind you, screaming for your attention. It’s about being brave enough to free yourself from the urge of having to please everyone all the time. It’s about saying NO even though it means you might disappoint people. It’s about being honest to yourself.

PRIORITIZE UNTIL IT HURTS may be one of the most important mantras to live by — because done right, it may be the closest we get to freeze time and space. And finally get some important shit done.
Chapter 01
BRUTAL
TRANSPARENCY
I’ve been trying to pull this project off since I first teased it a few months ago. But money-making, doubts and other distractions get in my way constantly. And of course they do, that’s just life.

There is always something ‘urgent’ to take care of before you can finally start to focus on your important work — it’s never-ending, and it’s an easy excuse.

A wise man once said THE PRICE OF INACTION IS FAR GREATER THAN THE COST OF MAKING A MISTAKE.

So starting today I’m making this journey, the hustle to get this thing going, the first story itself.

Because ultimately this is what the PRESENT project is about, or what I want it to be about: How we manage to realize the truly important projects, plans and goals in our heart, despite everything that’s going on. Despite all the small and big problems and worries in this life.

We have to start somewhere.
No more waiting for the perfect moment.
Let’s go.
SUBJECTS
 
First and foremost it's about conversations with people.
There are too many interesting personalities around us that need to be heard of more.

There are going to be many interviews, both in audio and written form — accompanied by sublime photography — by diverse contributors from around the world.

The following list of topics serve as a framework and starting point, but the contents of this project are in no way limited by them.
 

WORK

The  psychology  of how to get our most important work done — despite the beautiful mess around us.

Important  vs. Urgent.  Why  Prioritization  is key and busyness a form of laziness.

An journey into the  daily routines, habits, strategies and rituals of engaging humans of all kinds.

AWARENESS

Why  are we actually doing what we are doing?
How can we  create something fresh  nowadays?

How do we  filter  these days? (How can we deal better with all the information and options around us?)

An ode on the importance of  reflection  and the cultivation of brutally honest  self-awareness .

CULTURE

This will be a powerful platform to present  the freshest work from creative talent around the world.

What  moves  us to do our best? And what helps us if we are getting lost on the way?

Architect, accountant, actress or athlete — together we explore the struggles, successes, lessons, and core motivations of every soul .

ENERGY

What are the most effective and fun methodologies for  physical  and  mental  fitness?

Exploring tools and tactics to keep a  clear head.

What are the challenges and benefits of meditation and  being present  and how to get there?
(And why it's worth trying.)

PRESENT

WORKWEAR

This is an ongoing collection —
Order now to support this project.
Positive Energy Madness
T-Shirt Navy/Red
Perverse Optimism
Longsleeve White/Red
Perverse Optimism
Longsleeve White/Red
Positive Energy Madness
Sweatshirt Navy/Red