Technology troubles

I’ve just got back from three days’ teaching down at West Dean College following the most frustrating week where one bit of equipment after another broke down in my studio. On Monday it culminated in my big kiln short circuiting every time I switched it on, and a stressful day clambering over and squeezing down behind it trying to establish which part of the electrics had burnt out. By the time I had ordered a replacement part to be sent, it was too late to actually install it and I had to leave for West Dean.

I was teaching screenprinting and sandblasting, both of which are techniques that enable photographic imagery to be applied to the glass. We had all new silkscreens and a kaleidoscope of coloured enamels ready to use, but the first day of the course felt much like my previous week and we sputtered to a stop as my brand new printer refused to print the student artwork we needed to make the screen proofs. After struggling with the technology for a couple of hours I finally gave up. But upon admitting defeat two of the West Dean technicians appeared, like knights in shining armour, rolling into the workshop the most enormous colour laser printer I’ve ever seen! Like a dream, the acetates were printed in minutes and we were in business.

Returning back to my studio this morning and the prospect of fixing my broken kiln, it’s making me realise how lovely it would be to have some West Dean technicians on hand permanently!

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