Continue reading “Proust’s antidote to endless scrolling”
The fault I find in our journalism is it forces us to engage with some fresh triviality every day whereas only three or four books give us anything that is of any importance.Charles Swann, in Swann’s Way, In Search of Lost Time Vol.1
Boring post alert.
Sometimes you need to be boring to be creative.
This is a really boring post about something I find myself doing lots and lots: setting up an event on Zoom, selling tickets for it and promoting it. My hope is that by sharing these steps you will need to spend less time figuring it all out yourselves.Continue reading “Using Zoom, Eventbrite and Facebook to promote your event”
It wasn’t what I was expecting but volume 5 of Proust’s In Search of Lost Time ends on a cliff-hanger. It is incredible how such separeate threads from five previous volumes are starting to brought together: a narrative arc that I could never see converging has in fact been much closer to convergence than I expected.
I’ve been reading In Search of Lost Time – Proust’s epic explorationg of memory, art, adolescence and decisre – on and off since 2007. It is one of those books that lots of people have heard of, some know two things about it (the long sentances and the flood of memories provoked by dipping a madeliene cake in his tea) but I’ve hardly found anyone who has actually read it. So in 2007 I decided to give it a go (in English!).Continue reading “Reading Proust – volume 5 update”
I sit in my current preferred cafe bolthole and the jacket of the person opposite me catches my eye. It’s a slightly faded turquoise, not unlike a jacket I recently got in the sale. Hang on a second, it is the same jacket, maybe slightly older. I zoom out and notice their whole clothing combination is familiar: a stripey top, dark blue jeans, converse, set off with a dark grey panier.
These are the clothes that I wear, or at least I think I wear – only better. I look down at my own sartorial combination and I realise it is a poor approximation to my self image. I start to take notes for self improvement – cream converse, turned up jeans – but then my alter-wardrobe is gone.
I have long been in pursuit of the one outfit to rule them all. There are a few inspirations.
This course, which I deliver at Constructivist for the Institution of Structural Engineers is my longest running conceptual design training course. It is an introductory course, which splits conceptual design up into three phases: establishing the brief, creative thinking and convergent thinking and provides simple models for understanding each of these phases.Continue reading “Training course – Introduction to Conceptual Design for Structural Engineers”
A year on from declarations of climate emergency in the construction industry I am looking for ways to carry on emphasising the scale of the problem and the scale of the action we need to take. I feel that behind these bold declarations of emergency we are no closer to seeing the system-wide changes that we need and are instead focusing on smaller details.
I’ve realised that quietly, in the back of my mind I am waiting. It hasn’t happened yet, so i just have to wait a bit longer. I am waiting for things to return to normal.Continue reading “Still waiting”
Yesterday I was feeling particularly sad about the loss of live music during lockdown and the stories of musicians who just don’t have any work at the moment. And then, because this how my brain works, I thought, how can we put on some live chamber music at Hazel Hill Woods?Continue reading “Chamber music in the woods”
It feels right as I take on my new role at Hazel Hill Wood to read the Hidden Life of Trees. This is an evolving post based on notes I take as I read through the book.
From the foreward: ‘The author’s deep understanding of the lives of trees, reached through decasdes of careful observation and study, reveals a world so astonishing that if you read his book, I believe that forests will become magical places for you too.’
This week I ran a workshop with undergraduate students at Imperial College working in design teams at imperial. the aim was to show that it is much easier to give feedback when you a working from a common set of expectations. But this feedback approach can go much further than supporting good team dynamics – itself very important – it can be used as a tool for creative thinking and exploring new ground. Here is a summary of the ten most common points that came up during my conversations with students.Continue reading “Working notes on feedback as a design tool”