Travelling along unfamiliar paths

November 11, 2010

It’s funny, isn’t it? You wander along a particular route regularly enough and it doesn’t take long for things to become familiar. You find yourself able to daydream and know that you won’t lose your way. You might even take a quick detour, knowing that it’s likely to bring you out at the same spot.

It’s a long time since I’ve tried a different route altogether and I’m finding that whilst the uncertainty holds a certain charm, it’s also a daunting way to travel.

I’m working on a collaborative project as part of a group stemming from the Redeye Lightbox project. We’re looking at the very broad theme of ‘control’, which is, as a theme, something that’s interested me since art school days. Perhaps, though, because I’ve been away from an academic life for so long, I’m finding myself thrashing around, making false starts, nervous of making mistakes. The harder I try, the harder things seem to get. I seem to be veering anywhere but the right direction. Startled memories of crits back in art school are nagging at me and I’m trying to brush them away.

I suppose the easy answer is to go back to what I know, but I keep reminding myself of all those trite aphorisms about how if you don’t try new things, you don’t know what you’ll discover. I felt like this about avocados once.

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