March 2010
Week three - Entry one

root girl - Rachel Goodyear

root girl - detail

crying stag - Rachel Goodyear

crying stag - detail

I keep having a recurring dream that I abruptly find myself back at home. In each dream I have left many things unfinished, and there was so much I still wanted to explore both in the environment and with my own thoughts. In each dream I am clawing to get back to Banff, just to have a little more time.

As I slide towards the half-way residency mark, I feel that a months is barely enough time to scratch the surface. Having this space, stripped of my everyday surroundings and routines, I am excited by subtle developments happening. Hints of new avenues I can explore, I will be interested to look back a year from now and really be able to observe the impact this time has on my practice. I also realise that the studio environment is addictive. Days and weeks can go by and it is possible to forget to explore beyond the imagination. How much regret I will have if I go home without gathering the most source material I possibly can. It is the end of another day in the studio, I head to a Leighton Colony Studio in the retreat of the woods. This workspace is literally a fishing boat that has been transported to its new setting amongst the trees. A few of us have gathered for a going-away party for its resident writer. Tomorrow I will head out and gather more inspiration from the landscape.


flying over the forest

With the intensity of the day to day in the Centre I take a morning out just for myself. I take the gondola up sulphur mountain. The twenty minute ride presents a whole new world to me. A pod on a wire all to myself, I float high above the forests peering down into that world I imagine every minute of the day. The only sounds are the gentle hum of the wire and my own breathing. A viewing platform at the top gives me a 360 degree view of the Rockies. The town of Banff is a speck below and I finally get a sense of the magnitude of this landscape. From up here I notice the rock formations, imagine the fossils of sea creatures, thrown up to the heavens when the mountains were born. I recalled a small 3 dimensional map I saw a few days ago where the Rockies were reduced to ripples. I began to think of myself as a microscopic form, making my way through the world of the tiny grooves in my skin, on this scale like immense canyons.

sulphur mountain view

Back down to earth, I stand in the freezing clear air filming the gondolas, mostly empty, crossing paths through an opening in the trees. I listen for a long time, a hypnotic music created by the regular whirring, scrapings and rumbles of the gondolas and wires overhead, amplified as it travels down the metal support.

I muse about where all this will lead. I daydream about all these sounds, films, photographs, sketches and memories that I am gathering. Musing about new ways I can inject it all into my practice and where it could all fit in. But this is what it is about. Taking as many experiences back home with me as I can to reflect and develop. I head back to the studio. My note-books full, my camera memory full, my mind full.


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