The Playful Professional

Following on from the last post about being a quiet and slow professional, I am also rediscovering the playful.

Without the stresses inherent in the publicly funded project, I can be more random and playful. Even as part of the publicly funded project run by someone else! I think I spoke before about how great it feels to participate but not have the responsibility for it! 

So the other day, after we at Radio Public had the idea to make more radios, I spent the afternoon making a fabric radio. I gathered a few scraps together, a bootlace, milliners’ wire, some old garment labels, a little box, some packaging materials and (a last minute stroke of genius if I might say so myself) a handful of little bells – because every radio has a jingle!

I had hours of fun making this:

It was daft, slow, creative and I loved it! It made me realise that I need to be having more fun with this job I do. I suppose, once thinking about why I’m making these twigs, the seriousness of the issues surrounding them has got to me. But just because the subject is serious it doesn’t mean the making has to be! These twigs are children, the whole point is not just to represent that these children live in poverty but that they are individual children. They have personality, they play, they interact! While I’m making them I’m thinking about how to display them. It maybe there are infinite ways to do this using the same sticks. One of my original ideas was to line them up in ranks to count them, almost like a tally chart. That’s not wrong, it’s just one way to do it, which talks to the statistics. Maybe another way of displaying them will talk of their playfulness?

The work continues…

Five, six, pick up sticks

Seven, eight, lay them straight…

Maybe that’s a title for the work?

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