Having embarked on a Masters of Fine Art at Duncan of Jordanstone Art College, Dundee Uni, I thought a blog might satisfy the curiosity of friends and family who are asking themselves what on earth is she up to now? And why, why, why?
First, some folk are surprised that I'm not learning how to paint or draw or sculpt or throw a pot - but they are far too polite to suggest perhaps that's what I should be doing! This MFA does not entail learning practical techniques. It's about your approach to art-making - development of ideas, experimentation and thinking. Lots of thinking. The aim being that it will feed my creativity, fire up my imagination and inform whatever I choose to create.
Secondly, the course at Dundee is a bit different as it includes a generous dose of subjects defined as Humanities - like philosophy, poetry, politics, english lit. An added bonus for me but which requires a rainforest of reading.
Thirdly, as I'm avoiding campus because of COVID, I'm attending lectures, seminars and tutorials online. So this blog will useful for me as a quick reference to what I've been up to. The course is so full-on it could soon become a ginormous muddle so I'm going to summarise here.
Despite avoiding campus, I can't resist dropping into the library in the first week. I immediately turn into the 10-year-old me being taken to Hamleys, the London toy shop, before Christmas. Skimming the shelves up down left right, dazzled and greedy. Half an hour later, weighted down by my rucksack stuffed with books, I stagger to my van . What I forgot is that there are only 24 hours in a day, I have only one pair of eyes and my memory just ain't what it used to be.
The to-do list includes reading and listening, watching and looking. Then you have to digest it all. Then you have to join in lively discussions. My brain is pinging like popcorn. Cognitive dysfunction looms. I gaze at the slatted pine ceiling of my cabin, slack-jawed, and listen to the drumming rain. And that's just day three.