Now Playing: the dirty three - she passed through
Well, here we are: my last night as a resident at Hospitalfield! As expected, my month here has flown by!
I have had a fantastic, inspiring and productive month, and am, once again, so thankful to those who contributed to my Pozible [formerly Fundbreak] project.
If you're reading this, then you've probably been following my photographic journey through the month, so you've seen some of what I have achieved during this time, though I have many more photographs to edit from my time here, and *shock, horror* numerous photographs of Hospitalfield that don't include me!
I feel I have achieved what I wanted to in terms of utilising the property and grounds to create new work for my interior / exterior series. There will always be an element of "Oh, I should have done this or that in this or that location" after the fact, but I feel proud of what I have produced, and knowing that I've also created work that potentially opens up at least two new bodies of work for me to develop further in future.
I have also been inspired by the contents of the library and folk I have met along the way, which has been wonderful.
To me, this is all pretty amazing, considering my first few days here were full of angst.
After moving halfway across the world in January, finding work and finding a new home, and only having been in each 2.5 months and 1 month respectively, I was feeling a little stressed about living up to others', but more pressingly, my own, expectations, of this residency. I felt like I couldn't waste a minute; that everything I shot here had to be amazing. That I had to walk away with the portfolio of the century, nay, millennium. Not much pressure, you know?
But, after getting my bearings and calming down (and maybe passing through that bad patch of PMS), I just concentrated on letting the location guide me, and tried to approach this as any other opportunity to shoot anywhere.
Perhaps I could have produced far more than I have; perhaps I could have shot every minute of every day, edited into the wee hours, and injected the history of the property and the town into my veins, but the whole point of having a month or longer to undertake a residency is to just let the place act upon you, to step back and contemplate, to reassess your work and your direction, and I think that was something I managed to do. I could easily spend another two months here, and I can definitely see the possibility that I may return to undertake another residency here in the future, but for now, I think my work with Hospitalfield has been achieved [apart from the editing, there is still a lot of that to be done!]
Whilst here, I've had the pleasure to meet some of the Patrick Allan-Fraser of Hospitalfield Trust, in the personages of Willie Payne, the Director, and Ken Cargill, the Chairman, who have both been helpful, supportive and full of information about the property. Fellow artists Rebecca Westguard, Kelly Sim, and a Dundee film crew led by John Fairfield. Friendly and welcoming staff: Rod, Louise, Ange and Sonia, who each made sure I was adequately fed and bed during my stay. I even managed to meet a "local", John, a friend from Flickr; and let's not forget Luna the Weimeraner and Toby the Welsh Terrier who always made me smile.
So, where do I go from here?
There is the self-published book of the series I've already started working on, but which will no doubt go through various drafts as I edit more images from my stay and revisit older images from the series to decide what will make the final cut.
I would like to exhibit the series in London, and possibly even in Scotland (cost of shipping framed works from London to Scotland may be an obstacle to this option, though).
I have the beginnings of a couple of new bodies of work in the form of images, and the germs of new project ideas in my head and notebook, and currently a clear, fresh mind to entertain and expand upon these [talk to me in a couple of weeks once I'm back at work in London, and that may no longer be the case though].
There is a much-discussed-soon-to-be-launched collaboration in the air. More on that soon!
I have managed to snag a place on the Wellcome Trust Tweet-Up Tour on June 28th. I've been fascinated with this place since I heard about the Exquisite Bodies exhibition they ran a couple of years ago.
I am looking forward to a weekend of portrait photography workshops with L.A. photographer Lou O'Bedlam, whose work I have been following for a while now, in late June.
I have a confirmed contract for my day job until the end of the year and potentially longer; and hopefully the same for my living quarters.
There is a lot of work still to do [not to mention I am looking forward to hitting the gym again on Wednesday for the first time in over a month - yes, really!], but I am feeling positive about it all, and looking forward to diving head-first into the remainder of the year.