Monday, 31 August 2009
So what do you do when you've got an hour to kill at lunchtime? Well you become a psychogeographer of course!
Psycho-what? (No, I didn't know what it meant either). Now stay with me on this... "Psychogeography is the point where psychology and geography meet, in assessing the emotional and behavioural impact in urban space". ...stay with me... In short this means to throw a bit of 'random' into things. Now rather than attempt to explain, let me give you my lunchtime example.
Rather than walk the usual route to the pub and back, I decided to let fate play a part and started walking with two basic rules. 1) to 'only walk on the sunniest side of the street avoiding any main shadows' (the opposite of the famous Nike advert) and 2) to enter any shop that had a 'glint' on its window and buy a 'souvenir' by which the walk would be recorded...
The journey went something like this...
12.55 - Left office and cross road into the sun.
1.10 - Wonder if this is a complete waste of time.
1.15 - See first glare of sun bounce off a louvered window abve the door - of a barbers shop.
1.22 - Am sitting getting a haircut - even though I don't need one).
1.30 - Regret not just asking for a tub of wax!
1.40 - Pay my seven pounds fifty (which tells you all you need to know about the quality of haircut I ended up with).
1.42 - Follow the sunny pavement back to work, wondering if 'that was it'...
1.55 - The sun bounces off an open window above a gallery space.
Turned out that the building wasn't just a gallery but a warren of artists' studios - and that I'd stumbled upon their open day. The premises were a hive of busy artists - a mix of jewellers, potters, sculptors and illustrators all absorbed in making real a product of their imagination. Inside the main door I recognise a polished ceramic sculpture by Craig Mitchell, a ceramicist whose work I've admired for years.
Anyway, by 2.25, I've met Craig, discovered he's originally from my neck of the woods, shared a bit of a chat and signed up to an 8 week course that he's running in ' Creative Clay Hand Building', with the aim of bringing one of my illustrations to life in ceramics.
2.35 - I'm back at my desk, planning a pub crawl that evening... as a real life psychogeographer!
Nike ad ref - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LTdxwIWplTo
Craig Mitchell - http://www.craigmitchellceramics.com