A.Richard Allen
November 2010
Enormously busy at present with little to show for it. Over the summer, I interviewed and was offered a one year, part time teaching post in Plymouth but, after much consideration I had to turn it down (a 2½ hour commute). I've since done a few sessions for them ad hoc- several tutorials and a workshop on Visual Metaphor (thanks are due to Christoph Niemann and Thomas Fuchs for their permission in my using their super work as examples). I've met some very receptive students and have surprised myself with my own levels of enthusiasm for the task.
Now I'm not going to lie to you and pretend that Plymouth is a charming burg that should be added to any of your European tour itineraries. A rough, naval city, it was where the Pilgrim Fathers were getting away from and it is currently one of the most impoverished areas of Southern England. I did, however, find it interesting exploring the place after dark as some sort of psychogeographical quest: Ah! the thrill of picking my way through the main precinct deserted by all save skaters, tramps and local toughs; imagining each moment might be my last; being almost mown down by a pimped Vauxhall Nova and having the C-word thrown at me (which Steve Wacksman informs me is, to his ears, exotically European).
Besides paid work, am trying to pull together my fabled picture book and doing my evening course in film directing and editing. Overdue homework looms for that: I foolishly volunteered for some storyboarding, something of a Busman's holiday.
Two possible finished pieces for Nicholas Blechman at the NY TImes Book Review. I always end up working up more than one if the AD's unsure and I'm eager to please. I think the right hand one was used with the left hander deemed a tricky read. It's a review of Rose Tremain's latest book, 'Trespass'. In my keenness, I got the book out the library and skim read it for character and location descriptions. This is a level of precision, I confess, I don't reach with all my commissions. Heck, I often don't read the text I'm sent...

roughs for the above

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