December 13, 2017

8.00 am: A communion. Thereafter, it was onto the drizzled streets towards Old College for three MA fine art tutorials. The university was beginning to wind down.

West Classroom: an informal painting:

10.45 am: I had time to window shop and catch up on emails and messages before my 12.00 pm emergency dental appointment. I took refuge from the rain in a café that I’d never before patronised. I’ve sent many students to draw there in the past:

11.45 am: I was at the dentists to await emergency dental treatment on my ailing back tooth. I receive refill, with the possibility of gold cap to finalise the reparations in the Spring:

1.30 pm: The first of two PhD Fine Art tutorials this afternoon. The students represented entirely contrasting worlds. Variety is one of the joys of research-degree teaching. There’s also a richness in witnessing them discover a sense about their lives and themselves that would not be disclosed other than through art.

5.20 pm: Homeward. 7.00 pm: My other life: Holy Trinity Church Committee.

Some principles and observations derived from today’s engagements:

  • While we may not fully understand what are our intentions are at the outset of a project, it’s incumbent upon us to know them by the end.
  • When you get lost in art (as in life), retrace your steps to the point where you know that you still knew the way.
  • Art is made within the nexus of our lives. Thus, when we are made tired, downcast, despondent, and distracted by the broader context of our experience, the art suffers in sympathy. It cannot be insulated. Therefore, be kind to yourself and realistic.
  • It’s when you return to the point in your work from which you first embarked that you begin to realise what is was all about, and where you should go next.
  • Suffering can produce either a positive or a negative response, either good or bad fruit. The choice is yours.
  • In the absence of suffering, we live paper-thin lives.
  • Choose your problems wisely. Consider only those that you feel likely to overcome (albeit with great difficulty) and be of benefit to either you or others.
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