i went to london yesterday and realised that a day trip isn't as arduous or expensive as i would have imagined. i have definite plans for a v&a trip some time soon, and that idea has nudged me towards thinking about some form of guided study.

i'm a sucker for courses, but in the past my interests have burned out quite quickly. the textile thing is something that has been with me intermittently throughout my life. i still vividly remember a textile class we had at school when i was 11 that i absolutely adored (and shone in). i've done random pieces of needle work since childhood and i definitely find it meditative and soothing to work something repetitive, particularly at difficult times.

i think working in a group setting would be beneficial to me (another kick in the pants to join the s'n'b) and i would also dearly love to exercise my academic inclinations again. but i don't think that it's physically or financially possible for me to enter some kind of undergrad programme at the moment, i'm not sure whether i really want to, and they wouldn't let me in anyhow cos i have no foundation course. which leaves me the option of making up my own.

i've worked in arts education - damnit i've written a sub-undergrad syllabus in the past - so it'll be an interesting exercise to see whether i can come up with something similar for myself, a kind of hotch-potch of locally-accessible short courses and self-guided study, reading (yay! for access to university staff loans ), field trips, online research and discussion.

i think this could be a good way to test the water before thinking seriously about some larger commitment to a formal course.

i think part of me is worried that if i delve too deeply into things i might get the same kind of burn-out of interest i had in previous areas i've studied in depth (archaeology and psychology), but then i think that perhaps i could actually draw on those other interests and bring them into my textile work.

it's funny, yesterday (at the tate modern) i was saying that i find conceptual art unappealing, that i have no interest in the ideas behind things, it's the immediate aesthetic or emotional impact a work has on me that matters. but i think i'm finding as i continue with the textile work i'm unsatisfied with the pure craft aspect, the physical construction and development of technique - although i realise i have many many years of that to come beore i can call myself a true crafts person - i need to explore the ideas and the history. i desperately want to create original work, but i don't have the framework of understanding to do that.

and i'm thinking again about "art" something i've kind of sidled alongside for much of my life while refusing to embrace it and often despising and decrying it. but those thoughts are still so half-baked i can't put them into words.

soooo, i think this leaves me with a plan: to define my area of interest and narrow down what i actually want to learn; to research what might be available to me locally in the way of courses or opportunities to work alongside or in collaboration with others; to research places of interest i could visit; to write myself a reading list; to explore the work of textile artists/crafters; to find if there are any self-study resources available to me; to surf the web a lot finding random (but related!) stuff :D

cool, that should keep me busy.