I started on this project with a certain degree of optimism. It was the sort of collaboration I feel worthwhile - art college and community. I liked the idea of being able to focus on the character of the Grassmarket and come up with some artworks which would serve as window displays designed to attract visitors into the area.
As I walk through the area really every day during term time I thought I knew it fairly well and had the idea of fusing the old historical impact of a building with its modern, current employment. Hence the corbie steps and roof line, the character of the building by way of pitch, window and arch would be realised in greys whilst the splashes of colour and design that spoke of contemporary use would be highlighted.
Unfortunately my enthusiasm was squashed. I had arranged a meeting with the tutor who had written my mid-session review in order to go over her comments. During that conversation we referred to this project and she told me that in her opinion I was playing it safe. She advised me to consider the project in terms of my normal studio work i.e. found objects and encouraged me to walk around the Grassmarket area to look for something that I could use. Duly bid, I set out. Nothing barring empty beer cans and cigarette ends were visible so I gave up on the idea. Furthermore, we had a meeting as 4th year in which all the dates and deadlines were give for the duration of the semester leading up to the degree show. I felt rather uneasy. I thought I had bitten off way more than I could comfortably chew what with studio work, Running with Scissors and this project and worried that I might be over stretched. Hence after discussion with my tutor John Brown I let the Grassmarket project go. Irony of ironies, although there were a good number of folk interested in this scheme in the initial stages, by the time of the presentation only three worthies turned up. I should have had more faith in my ideas and gone in for the presentation if nothing else than for the sense of involvement and for the feedback. Hindsight is a great thing.
Carol E Duff