Field Trip 1993

I’ve been going through my video cassettes and digitising (using a borrowed one of these) the handful of things that aren’t already floating around Internet. One tape was the hour long video of the field trip I went on in my final year at university, which I’ve uploaded to Vimeo.

I doubt it’s interesting enough to watch the whole thing if you weren’t on the trip, and it’s not old enough for fashions to look laughably quaint. You may, however, spot the very occasional glimpse of me with hair.

Looking back, it was an amazing trip. The main teacher in charge, Bob Burns, asked us if we’d be prepared to go on a “magical mystery tour” — pay the money, take our passports, and leave it to him to arrange the holiday. Sorry, intensive field study.

We set off from Bristol in a coach, heading for the coast. The first stop was… Bognor Regis. Butlin’s. But that was just for a night and from there we drove to Innsbruck, Berlin and Venice in, I think, ten days. We saw a lot, had a lot of fun, and even did a bit of drawing occasionally.

One of the highlights was laying out a huge square of paper in the middle of St Mark’s Square and everyone kneeling down to draw the surroundings, Bob somehow managing to convince the officials that it was all fine.

When we returned to Bristol, a large marquee was set up at college and we spent a week or two recreating some of what we’d seen inside — a merry-go-round, a Berlin wall, a little canal, etc. — for an exhibition.

Some time later Ned, Tim and Chris managed to edit all their footage of the trip and the exhibition into this film. There are plenty of indulgent studenty things in it but I think it works pretty well. Good going.

But watching it through I was almost struck more by the few shots of college corridors at the very end than I was the sunny continental locations. I love art schools and those corridors made me all nostalgic. You (or I, certainly) don’t realise quite what you have while you’re there. I really must get back to drawing more.