Train journeys can be liminal.
I’m shifted; removed from the environment of home, travelling towards another kind of space. Somewhere between leaving and arriving I transmute into another version of myself; one with different roles and responsibilities. Structure isn’t absent on a train – rules of conduct remain – but within this it offers time-out from normal life to spend as one sees fit.
I’m placed, temporarily, in the cracks between the different aspects of my life, transported through countryside and town, lulled into a semi-meditative state by sound, motion and flickering light. I use the time as I wish – sleep, read, people-watch, day-dream, imagine, create. I can adopt any guise – any personality – I wish. Other forms of travel (such as car journeys) don’t have this effect as they’re too distracting and require too much concentration to allow a liminal state to emerge.
To use a train journey to create art, I suspect I must reach a liminal state if the work is to be as open, exploratory, inventive and effective as possible.
Given this, train journeys are crucial to this project.