learning architecture


a PhD in live projects and architectural education

A wide angle on day one


Arrived in Belfast yesterday afternoon. As with my previous visit, I touched down under beautiful blue skies, with a warm breeze filtering into the cabin as the aeroplane doors were opened. I can do this journey in about three and a half hours door to door: it is theoretically possible to do it in less time (and any opportunity to spend less time waiting in the Prestwick departure lounge is surely to be embraced) but I’m reluctant to take any chances missing the one daily Ryanair flight to Belfast.

Met with RM (my supervisor) for the first official supervision, and began with a wonderfully broad and discursive sweep about where I’ll be going and what will be happening. The first important strands have been identified and I’ll be expanding on those individually here this week. Yesterday and today have been focused on settling in to a new office, fixing up a computer, and generally standing with abject fear on the precipice of a three year PhD.

What better way to calm my nerves and end my first day than with a rare 35mm screening of Barry Lyndon at the Queens Film Theatre, as part of the Belfast Film Festival? Pure cinematic pleasure: a magnificent film (so magnificent it needs an interval, and despite its three hours didn’t feel a second too long) with a grand understanding of the picturesque. Also a great opportunity to see some exquisite scenes lit solely by cande light, and filmed using the largest aperture lenses ever used in film.


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