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It’s always exciting to find a package of processed slide film in the letterbox, doubly so to unwrap it and hold each strip up to the light to see how it’s come out. I’ve got 4 reels back from the lab now, so around 90 frames to play with. Last week I went through the painstaking process of scanning each image into the computer (so I can import them into Final Cut Pro and create a movie sequence). A process that more than pays off, though, when you see them playing back on the timeline: always a bit of a surprise, and always a bit magical.

Even as digitized scans, the slides carry that richness and warmth that is so particular to film. It is worth the time, the expense and the few out-of-focus frames to get that quality of image. I also enjoy the delay, the anticipation between shooting and developing. It affords time to ponder and plan, to think ahead to the next phase.

90 frames aren’t many, so I’ve only managed a few tentative tests so far. But I’m quite excited by the results. The series create short, stuttering journeys – little glimpses. I can loop some of the sequences to extend their rhythms. Many are close-up details of plants and flowers so capture something of the seclusion and intimacy of the garden. The sequences are erratic, playful (“kind of snapshot-y” my boyfriend said). I don’t mind that, the garden is a light-hearted, playful place. The jumpiness is unusual for me though – although I like to draw some attention to the ‘animated’ nature of my work, I usually take care to use a tripod, to eliminate wobble and to allow for smooth transitions and delicate movements rather than quick, disjunctive cuts. I’m not quite sure how this will pan out…

On Thursday afternoon I made my first sound recordings. I was using a tiny microphone attached to my iPod so the recordings are faint and crackly, but I quite like that quality. They create a sense of space and suggest an environment, without spelling it out too clearly. Children’s voices drift in from a nearby playground; planes and cars are a steady drone in the background. Occasionally I captured a fly buzzing or footsteps passing by me – closer sounds that begin to define the space of the photographs, albeit ambiguously.

Afterwards I sat with some of the Culpeper members and talked about seasonal changes in the garden. Already summer is dying away and the colours, textures are changing. It has been unusually dry so the grass is looking parched, many of the colourful flowers have passed and the whole place feels more subdued. They told me how in the winter months when the green canopies are gone, the surrounding buildings become much more visible – more present in the space. It will be interesting to observe this transformation, the dialogue or interchange between garden and city.