So, last week I did my final date on my current UK tour of universities with a trip up to Sheffield. I seem to be specialising in Northern unis at the moment, what with Teeside a wee while ago. The train journey was quick and uneventful; a little over two hours from London. I spoke to the students at Sheffield last year and their lecturer essentially wanted the same talk again to get the students thinking in the right way for the course work. I also updated the video clips to make them more current for the section of the talk where I take a shot we've worked on apart and explain how all the elements were created and put together. So out with Harry Potter and in with "Hellboy 2". I actually had better "making of" resources for Hellboy anyway so I think it made the talk snappier. After a quick glass of water, I delivered the talk to about 50 students and staff. That seems to be the usual number. It's always hard to tell how things are going across because kids these days seem very reticent to ask questions, but they didn't talk amongst themselves and laughed at the jokes so I'm claiming it as a win. I have to say, the more I do these talks the easier they become. I've never been one for much in the way of stage fright but I don't even have notes anymore and yet I think I managed to talk fairly lucidly for an hour.
After lunch I lurked around in the college's workshops so that the students could get some one on one advice for their films and so I could do careers advice where it was wanted. I always try to do something like this and wherever I go I only ever get a tiny handful of students who take me up on the offer of advice. It's never more than 10% of the folks who show up for the lecture. I find this really odd. When I was a student I remember trying to drain any visiting lecturers of any advice they could offer, it always seemed like a "must do" thing. Well, not any more. Once it was clear that on-one else wanted to talk to me, I made my way back to the station and returned to London.
I spent the rest of my second week of holiday going to as many exhibitions as I could manage. I saw shows on Le Corbusier, Rodchenko, Popova, millinery, ancient Greece and a show of paintings in South London that a buddy of mine had a picture in. I also started doing some formal planning on my short film idea, doing story boards and so on. I had a pretty quiet weekend and then last Monday, the one just gone, I went to Bletchley Park where I took lots of photos and I'll do a post all about them hopefully tomorrow...