Reflections – Prof Context 1

It’s the evening of the first day of presentations and a good time to reflect on what worked, what didn’t and what to learn from the experience. This first presentation I situated myself in past and current work. I expressed where I’d been creatively and what took me further along the creative route. I perhaps spoke too long about my own work instead of contextualising it further. Although in essence I have been in a commercial sales environment and operated like a small business and so my contextual reference points were enterprise related and not theoretical in nature.

It is though an area I need to begin working on. Perhaps I have too many theoretical ideas to bring in. It certainly feels like there are many strands of research material to investigate and I need to work through these to see which areas feel the most comfortable. At this point in time it is relevant to note that moving into the area of sound and recording is a new area for me and so brings with it extra challenges of not being an expert in the field, of not knowing yet what is currently being produced or what the latest areas of research are. Yet one essence of interest remains the same and has always been there and that is ‘effect’. What effect do sound & visual environments have upon us as humans? How can we better understand ‘us’ in the context of life?

The other point worth noting is my response to nerves. In the morning I knew there was some slight anxiety levels lying dormant yet they didn’t fully surface until my name was called and I was walking towards the front of the room. I remember those nerves so well, like a very uncomfortable familiar old foe. It’s to do with performance and being ‘seen’. It’s deeply uncomfortable. The only time I’ve ever really worked through these feelings was in the final performance of a week’s singing school several years ago when half way through a song I realised I had the power to communicate and engage the audience so that it became a two way connection. It was a powerful feeling and in that small moment all nerves dissolved. That is the essence of what I am aiming for in presentation two. I guess as it was noted today, that some of my work ideas touch on deep themes and suggest a certain vulnerability in myself also and hence the feeling of exposure when trying to talk about this to a group of people I’ve only just met.

Yet authenticity is what I greatly admire. I admire people who can do this. Be authentic and real and let themselves be seen. Most of my life has been an exercise in hiding myself away. Maybe this Master’s course is about to change all of that.

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