Monday, 10 August 2015

MA-Ness Term 3 Week 17 Portfolio Hand In, St George's Field At Night, Academic Hoop Jumping....

Not much on this weeks post it note - think I might have thought myself out....
Crap kiddies camera view of columns at front of chapel in St George's Fields - another example of how it warps and flares,I know it's rubbish but I have so much fun using it....

Portfolio hand in day is on Friday and I'm looking forward to it - I've done a lot of work this term and I did the bulk of sorting it out ready to hand in last week (it's currently two A4 lever arch files and an A3 portfolio...all with hidden Spongebob stickers) so instead of panicking and scrabbling round trying to get it in a fit state to hand in I am enjoying the fruits of my labour by taking it (relatively) easy and just adding the final touches. I'm still unsure as to who has stolen me and replaced me with someone who looks like me, likes the same things, wears the same clothes, knows the same people but who does things ahead of schedule as opposed to running around like a headless chicken at the last minute throwing any old stuff together - like I did when I was an undergraduate many many moons ago. It would appear that in those intervening years I have not only learnt something about myself - I don't like the stress of running about like a headless chicken at the last minute but also that I have taken successful steps to change my behaviour so that I am not running about like a headless chicken at the last minute.  Now if only I can apply the same process to maintaining healthier eating and an exercise regime.....

I also want to thank the previous terms me for deciding to keep this blog as a research journal and getting into such a strong habit of writing it on a Monday as that has made this hand in (and previous ones) much easier too. I was determined to not repeat the mistakes of my undergraduate course (History at Leeds Uni many moons ago) like leaving everything to the last minute, being too embarrassed at times to admit to lack of knowledge, not knowing how to ask for help when I clearly needed it or being too embarrassed to do so and this has worked. I haven't been too embarrassed to ask for help or to admit when I am struggling with something on the course. I think that is one of the advantages of doing a course like this as a so called 'mature student'. I wouldn't have been able to do something like this straight out of my undergraduate degree. I'm also very grateful to this course for giving me such a focus and distraction over the last few months when life outside the course has been very hard indeed, and to the support and friendship of fellow course members, the support and advice from tutors and technicians and last but not least the support of my ever patient and supportive husband.

So as you can see it's not a very busy post it note - I think I'm all thunk out for the moment really and I need a rest - especially after last week as I spent most of it doing a lot of writing - my portfolio overview and review of the year is roughly the length of the dissertation we have to hand in in December.  It has been a really useful exercise though as it's made me evaluate what I've been doing - both in an approach to learning and in terms of the work I've been making.

I've got some learning points for next year - like making time to read on my to do list and making it just as much a priority as image making, going to more lectures, making time each week to sit in the library and look at magazines but overall I'm pretty pleased with how things have gone that side of things and I've got a plan for next academic year to put it into place.

I've also evaluated each of the projects I've been working on and have decided which ones I'm going to continue to work with and which ones I've learnt from but which I won't be pursuing for the time being. I might go back to them at some point but for the moment they are effectively done with. 

Along with writing and thinking and sorting lots I also had a very useful and reassuring tutorial - in which my fears about whether or not I am jumping the correct academic hoops were assuaged...there are lots of reasons I'm doing this course and one of them is to reclaim my mostly miserable undergraduate experience with something much more positive and rewarding and so far it is that - in spades. PHEW!!!!!

Unusual places to exhibit is a thought which struck me on Saturday night when we went to St George's Fields (after seeing Mr Holmes at the ever wonderful Hyde Park Picture House) to see what it looks like as the sunlight is fading and disappearing behind the height of the Henry Price student accommodation block - it was referred to as Horny Prison in my day and it was said it was built on a plague pit. I took the 35mm Canon camera I got from the charity shop a while back and took some colour pics and also (see above) my crappie kiddies camera. The pics are of such low resolution that I can attach all 25 I took there to an email and send it to myself (as a back up til a proper external hard drive back up can be done) and they are technically so poor but I love their warpedness and their inability to capture colour without flaring and it's unzoomable fixed focus. It's shonky as fuck but I love it. The light as it fades is lovely so fingers crossed me and husband will be back there soon to make the most of it (up til now all the pictures I have taken there have been during the day) and also to try and create the multiple exposures I want in the front of the chapel steps. The chapel was never consecrated so it could be used by all faiths or none and is now a university bookstore.

Taking pictures amongst a nest of graves I was struck by how smooth the back of some tombstones are and how perfect a setting they would be (vulnerability to adverse weather conditions and knickability aside) to show some of my work. Might have to do a pop up show there some day. I was also very pleased to find the same memorial seen in this pic but it is now much more overgrown and the sapling to the left of the pic (it was most likely taken early 80's) is now a massive strapping tree. The Sisters are still going (kind of) but as far as I know the only original person is Andrew Eldritch and of course Doktor Avalanche. I still listen to Black Planet but you're far more likely to find me listening to The Gift by The Sisterhood than anything else by Andrew Eldritch and unlike a lot of my chums I never got into the Mission...they were a bit too hippy for me.

Anyway back from that musical(!) meander down memory lane I'd best crack on with putting the final touches to my portfolio so I can hand it in on Friday without too much nervousness, and tidying my workroom space ready for next term as well as cracking a few more books in the ever present to read pile at the side of my desk.....we start back officially in September and I think I deserve a bit of a break so I might not write this again on a Monday til then....but I will keep up my post it note habit in the meantime in case something strikes me as worthy of note.

Happy Holidays :-)

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