February 4, 2016

8.30 am. Off to School to set up my day’s lectures and prepare for second year fine art tutorials. 9.00 am. kick off!:


Some principles and observations derived from today’s engagements:

  • Attend the studio. You’ll never again be surrounded by so many likeminded people.
  • Does your studio space project the identity of a busy, committed, organised, professional-in-the-making?
  • If, this semester, you are studying a medium that’s new to you, begin by developing some aspect of the medium that your explored last semester and with which you are familiar: its subject matter or style or process, and so forth. In other words, rather than erect an entirely new house in another place, build an extension onto your existing house.
  • If you can imagine the outcome of what you’re about to do, then don’t do it. It’s over before you’ve even begun.
  • Step out onto the ice without knowing whether It’ll support you.
  • Commit yourself to the implications of your work.
  • Attend to the process and the outcome will probably take care of itself.
  • Occasionally, you’ll be exceptional. However, you should aim to be always at least good.
  • Laziness is far more likely to prevent you from achieving your potential than any lack of ability.

11.10 am. The British Landscape lecture, on ‘The Natural and the Supernatural’, focussing on the works of Samuel Palmer and John Martin, and their pals. 12.00 pm. Back to fine art tutorials. I’ve a quick switching mechanism these days.

2.10 pm The Art in Wales lecture was on antiquarianism and archaeology. The subject is very remote from where my head is presently. I had to work hard to blow the dust off it:

3.00 pm. Two further and final fine art tutorials. All of my students are still trying to develop some initial traction that will allow substantial works and a definite sense of direction to emerge. So often the experience of fine art feels like swinging one’s arms around in the dark in the hope touching something that can be then grasped with both hands:


4.30 pm. An essay feedback tutorial, followed by module admin. 5.20 pm. The close of the School day. There’s a comforting melancholy that I associate with this time. The students have departed, but the scent of their energy still lingers. These rooms are never completely empty in this respect. Whoever or whatever else putatively haunts this building, I sense, at every turn, the wraiths of many former students who had, in their day, impressed themselves upon me:


6.15 pm. Practise session 1. 7.15 pm. A final evening on undergraduate dissertation reviews. The task was completed (for now).

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