Post-Doc

So what to say? What a year, year zero! It feels a bit like a leap year, but instead of moving forward, we remain in a purgatory-esque state of struggle, suffering, restriction and repetition with pockets of joy. I think it was around January this year when I finally felt as though I had had enough. I miss seeing my friends and giving them a cuddle. I miss having the opportunity to do something even though I probably can’t be bothered to leave the house. It’s bit like someone I know who lives in the Smoke (LDN) but seldom leaves their living room, I don’t get it… but anyway.

Currently surviving the precarious nature of post-doctoral life. I naively thought it would provide more stability than being a freelance creative. Whoops… nah, it’s just as bad, if not worse as you have loads of intellectual types trying to assert their mental dexterity, when really, I just long for a spade to be called a spade so I can crack on with my work.

I’ve entered my second year of teaching at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire’s  Junior Conservatoire which has been a nice challenge. I really care about my students’ development and randomly spend time pondering about how best to teach them, how do I encourage them to do better without discouraging them when I highlight areas of development? How do I elicit from them their own ideas to move their pieces in a direction that serves the aims of their musical creations? How do I do this on Zoom? How do I make that connection? Oof! The first stage is to ensure my life condition is high enough to absorb any of their angst and transform it into something workable.

Really excited to be hatching some plans with photographer B+. His work has been part of my life well before we met. He’s a cool cat and very generous. I won’t say too much. We are collaborating with a legendary figure… A proper GOAT. I won’t announce this until the project becomes real, but when it does, I’ll still be pinching myself.

Currently reading up on the notion of black aesthetics… Is it a thing? Is it possible? Is it too reductionist to group black creativity/expression into one mode of philosophical thought when Africa and the African disapora is hugggeeeee? Time to launch into some research and find out, eh. Loving this beautiful book by Paul Taylor, Black is Beautiful: A Philosophy of Black Aesthetics

3 thoughts on “Post-Doc

  1. Ian Sergeant says:

    Love this honest piece of writing Bobbie-Jane and I am sure many of us can relate to how frustrated and restricted we have been for nearly a whole year now. It is inspiring to know that despite the uncertain times you are making big plans for the future. Plus you are working with and teaching others to support them on their own journey. I wish you every success!

  2. David Gibson says:

    Happy to hear from you Bobbie-Jane. I was a guest of Mark and John’s on their YouTube channel recently and I asked Mark prior to filming how you had been doing during the pandemic. Glad to see you are finding a way although difficult to continue your fine work in music. Take care, David.

  3. Ruth Wootton says:

    I googled you so would know how to spell your name correctly for some meeting minutes and I’m so glad to have stumbled upon your website and blog. This post reminded me that I miss our conversations in the office kitchen. I love your honesty and motivation to encourage your students to do better without discouraging them. Keep going, your ripples will be felt beyond what you can see.

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