The Hand Eye Society is a Toronto not-for-profit dedicated to supporting and showcasing videogames made primarily as a form of creative expression. Founded in 2009 by Raigan Burns, Jon Mak, Jim McGinley, Jim Munroe, Mare Sheppard, & Miguel Sternberg, it is the first videogame arts organization in the world.
Board of Directors: Alex Jansen, Emma Scratch, Miguel Sternberg
Executive Director: Jim Munroe
Former Board Members: Jim McGinley, Craig D. Adams, Jon Mak, Raigan Burns, Mark Rabo, Mare Sheppard, Alex Hayter, Sagan Yee
Current and ongoing projects include Game Curious, the TORONTRON Indie Arcade Cabinets, Comics VS Games, and a variety of member-powered exhibitions and educational programs.
If your question is not answered below, feel free to contact us at info at handeyesociety dot com.
The Society was formed to be a hub for people with a passion for game culture to meet each other and collaborate. You might find you have a role in the community as an organizer of events, a promoter of new talent, a game educator -- game making is only one way to express your love. Or you might just be game-curious -- come out and find out more about what's possible in the medium at a Social or another event. It's not just for the hardcore, that's boring.
Sign up for the email updates. Every so often there'll be a call out for volunteers. If it sounds interesting, get in touch. If you're useful and reliable, people will be glad to collaborate with you. You might end up joining one of the working groups and coming up with new projects for us to do together.
In other media such as film and music there is an understanding that artists work in these mediums for diverse reasons beyond commercial interest, and this cause has been helped by film arts organizations and the like. There are lots of people making games that are artistically motivated, and we are interested in spreading awareness about this and nurturing it.
A metric ton, my friend. Check out the sidebar for a list of some of our favourite game projects in the city.
Check out our messageboard -- if you post something, make sure you leave a contact. Coming out to the events, either our Socials or other in person stuff, is a good way to meet some folks. You've already signed up for the updates, right?
Yes, because we believe that an auteur solo gamemaker -- or a small team -- can take artistic risks in content and approach that larger risk-averse entities can't. But we're not knee-jerk anti-corporate: we won't be excited about a crappy clone just because it's indie or deny the transcendental whimsy of the brilliant Katamari Damacy just because it's a Namco product. In the end, we see a symbiotic relationship between the two approaches as ideal and celebrate games that we find interesting regardless of who publishes it. The corporate/indie divide is lame: a win for one is a win for all!
Definitely -- it helps us expand what we can do and puts us into cultural spaces we wouldn't otherwise reach solo. So far we've been lucky enough to partner with film festivals, schools, arts councils, galleries, and other community-based organizations. Drop a line!
Games: Generally, if there's no in-person launch or cultural event associated with it, no. For instance, we didn't promote advisory board member Craig D. Adams' game when it came out, but when he had a rockshowcase event for it we did. We want to keep post frequency to a gentle flow of goodness not found elsewhere on the internet. Otherwise: A good rule of thumb is if there is an in-person component, send it over. If it's more commercial than arts, we will probably pass on it as IGDA Toronto is already doing a good job getting that info out to industry-minded folks.
We interact with a community of over 750 people, and have approximately 30 voting members.
By doing 10 hours of volunteering for a videogame culture project in the previous year and filling out a form saying so at the Annual General Meeting. Note that it doesn't have to be an official Hand Eye Society project.
Members are entitled to vote at the Annual General Meeting and run for board positions. Plus an awesome membership card with a Superbrothers design on it. As well, Bento Miso collaborative workspace is offering a 20% discount for three months for full-time members as well as 20% discount permanent discount to 3x and 1x week members for as long as they're card carrying HES members. If you'd like to offer our membership a discount, please get in touch.
Decisions are made by the Board of Directors (Miguel Sternberg, Alex Jansen, Emma Scratch). On a day-to-day level Jim Munroe (as executive director) executes these decision with the volunteer power provided by the membership.
If you're a member and follow the procedure outlined in the bylaws, yes. Naturally the membership will be most amenable to candidates who have proven they will bring a lot of energy to the position by active participation in the organization. You should also be aware that there are some legal liabilities that impact directors of not-for-profit corporations.