compress of ideas

attempts to speak my mind

posed questions and tweets sent

unconvientional blog post comprising of disjointed one line statements

crtitically attempting to be critical

ideas out waying ability to produce

awareness of a world and paralising blinding sight of what.

oh dear.

a wet Wednesday in October and the answers will not be coming anytime soon. recent memories of another risky project : taking an interactive installation to a theatrical scratch night. what part of me didn’t scream at the idea? i took part because i was invited to. i agreed on the basis of a model of the evening that didn’t repeat itself. i’m left asking myself “what do i need right now?”

personally i need to be gentle on myself.

professionally i need to make peace with all my ideas and ideals and be happy that this might leave me in a metaphorical village with one bus a day continuously on a figure of 8 journey.

i have to admit i’ve corted the thoughts of giving it all up. stopping. admitting that no one wants to see my work.

i make a cup of tea and sit in my new found world of not making, not expressing, not exploring, not playing. not allowing my mind to be curious. denying myself the doing of things that i enjoy to do.

and i remember the one person that really got and really enjoyed the work at the scratch night. 1 person in 40.

and i think why did i even think that 40 people would get what i do? i do some quick maths. 2.5% of the audience got my work. that’s under half of the percentage of the population of the uk that go to the tate ( 7% ) .

i sip tea.

i consider my preciousness.

i consider my sanity.

i consider my food bill.

i consider my self worth.

i slow down.

i sip my tea.

i write a long list.

i sip my tea.

(what personal complex do i harbour that needs what i do to make me whole? )

(what part of my making is therapeutic?)

(what part of my making is about me creating a world around me void of things i don’t like?)


how often do i back up? not very often actually as the laptop works so why do i need to back it up? i do back up the files that go to make the current in progress work. so what about all the stuff on the hard drive ?

i’ve asked the question this week as i have an opportunity to upgrade to the latest os to take advantage of the apps that a newly arrived piece of hardware will connect to.

i’ve looked over the contents of the hard disc and see that there are files going back to the inception of my relationship. how much hard disc space is used by all that? do i need it all? what to keep?

i was amazed to discover on the machine there is over 17gb of images. how many of those do i regularly use i thought.

time to slow down. time to edit the contents of the hard drive. time to make disc back ups and delete the originals. time to reflect on things done and to see that the future doesn’t have to have everything carried forward with me.

i am a natural horder. i have school books from my teenage years. boxes of them. boxes of files from my drama college days and my national youth theatre seasons, my weekly rep days too.

so why have i horded it all?

consciously i saw no reason to throw it all away.

subconsciously i believe hording to be connected to a sense of something missing. i believe this because of a television programme about horders attempting to let go of all that is horded. i am by no means at the level of keeping bags of rubbish. oh no i’m very adept at throwing the bags of rubbish away even to the point of going through the general rubbish bag removing the plastic and all things recyclable.

i wonder if the keeping of things has been to do with wanting to discover who i am. there being some point in time where i will be able to realise. how do i know if that time will come? is it an all the time event?

this sense of knowing who i am permeates it’s way into my online persona. well wanting to know who i am and how i communicate that comes into how i approach my online persona.

i’ve considered the relationship between my online self and my physical self. if i place something on line does it have less meaning than if if were a physical thing in a space that such physical things are looked at and admired for their meaning because of the actions placed upon it to get it there.

paradoxically i often think that i haven’t understood all the talk about a critical discussion within my practice. i grew up where a critical discussion was a close adult telling me what to do because i wasn’t doing it and i should. oh the joy to realise that critical discourse is just the ideas being talked about and being reflected upon.

so in freeing up space on the hard drive and placing the discs in a drawer, what process am i going through? well it appears that i’m doing something that has previously not been on the concious agenda. scale springs to mind now.

i am getting a pleasing feeling in burning each disc and having slowed down have the space to write something here. i am becoming a fan of slowing down.

i am also seeing the advantage of having a critical discourse at the centre of my practice. my view of it today is that i can communicate the boundaries to which comers to view will stand inside.

my current inability to state what the critical aspect of my practice is leaves the field wide open and consequently seems to offer too much range to be interesting.

so my challenge becomes how to find the boundaries that afford comers to the works to feel safe and still afford me the creative space to flit and explore and have fun?


“i appear to be approaching a mirror” i wrote as i lay waiting to fall asleep. i was thinking about a blog post and several confluences of thought.

i have been thinking a lot of late. you’ll be pleased to learn that the thoughts are positive, nurturing and forward looking. the high levels of vitamin d are helping for sure.

of the confluence of thoughts, the main flow are around a pop up exhibition that i’ll be doing in august. it’s a risky time of year to mount an exhibition and risky that there’s only about a month to publicise it. accepting the risks, the main positive about it is that i’m exhibiting again.

it’s been three years since being in a formally designated art space as an exhibitor. in that time i’ve been making and doing things and in accepting the date in august have immediately connected to how good a point in time to work towards is.

the date in august comes close to the back of the Belper art trail project. i’ve joked with friends that if i hadn’t done that project that the august exhibition would feel huge and daunting. in reality the opposite is true. being part of the trail organising group has helped me get some perspective on my own practice.

recent tributary thoughts are connected to this blog, well in fact to me myself. i reflect that my title of this blog has been professional development. in what you might describe as hard, maybe the title should have been professional stasis.

to briefly connect with a sporting analogy … my progress as a racer has been held back by the machinery that i was using andi have been unable to step back far enough to be honest with myself about where i was and where i was heading.

just maybe my progress has been equivilent to the sports person first learning how to lose.

at a practice level this is to do with accepting things about myself.

so at this point i’m going to take a moment to step away from the mental self harm that has been part of this blog in previous entries, however useful that has been and will continue to be…

in taking a step out of my safety zone to mount the exhibition, i’ve done so in as a truthful and honest way as possible. i’m allowing myself to describe the works as mechanically what they are. i’m making space for the audience to meet the works and i’m mentally strong enough for the audience to not get or like or want to see the works.

i accept that audiences for works are limited and my exhibition is me being confident enough to make it. i accept that maybe just maybe not many people will come. i aspire to an audience of 7. i would obviously like a larger audience however i cannot possibly know until the day how big the audience will be so until then i will write honestly and invite all those people who i would like to be there to see what i’ve put together.

i’m giving myself space in which to roam with my ideas.

i’m intentionally aware of audience finding connections between the works and will welcome their findings.

to help me, i’ve written a blog post in which i describe the works and describe for the audience how this is the beginning of an investigation into my practice becoming an engaged practice.


at the embarkation of a fresh training programme i recognise that when i have emotional energy in response to something, i’d best use it to produce something.

a cathartic process with intention to record something for later reflection.

i watched the culture show’s 30 minutes about the royal academy summer show.

“you have to be as tough as old boots to be an artist” Norman ackroyd.

innocent words at the time.

personally i know i’m not very tough. however from a process of engagement and doing my toughness can be found as a result of the actions of others. today i need to make a phone call to speak with someone about something that has disempowered me from the process.

in these early stages of disempowerment i am aware that this hurt is already having an impact on my toughness. i am also aware that as this feeling disappates that there is every possibility of it happening again, unless i adapt the process by which i get myself into these situations.

i ask of myself to return to these words but not to this situation of feeling disempowered by the actions of others.

(footnote: of the two videos, the intention is to watch the gary numan video after the brazilian video. in the edit screen they are in that order however in the browser they apprear the other way round)


i’ve spent a few hours in the presence of runners taking part in a relay event over a 3 . something long course. as i wait for pasta to cook i’m left with an over riding question…

how can i get my adrenalin fix from what i do / make ?

i ask it of myself with 3 potential opportunities in mind:

the pop up exhibition proposal

the experimental work with intentional audience engagement through their interaction/participation

the examining and exploration of a space in a public building with the intention of re-energising the space to engage a wider and larger number of people than currently engage with the space.

as i stood watching the runners warm up i realised of myself that a weakness of mine is in the warming up for something, i find it difficult to write about it in the public sphere which in turn holds the project back because i hold it too close to myself and ultimately choke the idea.

my training programme could do with some tweaks.

i hope to see some improved performance results.