I started a Practice Led Research phd last week.

I’ve been thinking about my reasons behind this and it’s basically that I don’t want to stop learning.  Having had a break between my Bachelors degree and my Masters degree, I’ve found that I don’t want to leave the university atmosphere of conversation, interaction and learning.   I’m studying part time and continuing to work as an artist and art tutor on a study programme with teenagers who have mental health, autism, anxiety along  with care leavers.

However, starting a phd is no guarantee of being accepted through the next stage, which is a revision of my original proposal and a tightening up of my ideas, this then goes to a committee who don’t know me or my practice for assessment.  I then have to wait a few weeks to find out if I can progress the study.  This is really challenging my imposter syndrome and pushing way beyond my comfort zone.



Well the first couple of months has been a whirlwind of balancing life, work and phd study.

I feel as though I haven’t actually done any phd study even though I’ve been trying to read my extensive bibliography.  This in itself has been a challenge, the stack of books and journal articles is so big it’s all a bit overwhelming, how do I decided which one to read as they are all relevantandineedtofititallinbeforeiimplode…. or just turn Netflix on and ignore the growing panic.  Which isn’t necessary panic, as it’s part time and my first deadline isn’t until July.  Or if I get my arse into gear, it could be April.   The problem being, there are so many threads to explore that I’m not sure which one to follow.

And Breathe.

I have however been enjoying workshops, presentations and just generally trying to get my head around the beast that is the phd.  This in itself presents a dilemma as my work is different to all the other phd’s which are theoretical and not practice based, my saving connection is with another artist who started the same time as me.  We just need to co-ordinate when to meet up.

So lots of reflection here, lots of planning to do and I need printer ink to get some bits physically in front of me so I can start work properly.