From the lab to stay-at-home dad
Bobbing around the shifty peaks on the right at Easky along the Sligo coast give you plenty of time for introspection. Paddle here, paddle there, over there? "Cor... suss that thing draining and gurgling, maybe I'll paddle over... Crikey! Hang-on, what's this? I'm right on it! ....AAARRK!" Indecision, contentment. Anxiousness, Serenity. The pendulum swings and the mind is still or effervescent. The sea - a theatrical set in which the real and the imagined court their sparks and the dance diffuses across the membranous partition between the within and without. Shifty peaks and freak sets - such a dynamic temperament is not only found here. My last session however, was not at Easky but somewhere along the Mayo coast where a draining right-hand beachie was doing its best to remonstrate my absence from the sea... Indeed, forgive me frother, for it has been more than one month since my last submersion. Here, again, amidst the maelstrom I find solace. The opportunity to flow into a new lifestyle has peaked like a freak set. Heaving up on the horizon when your back is turned and catching you by surprise, a rapid response will have you in for the ride of your life whereas succumbing to fear and a desperate thrash to safety can leave you exhausted and regretful. Strange, though I'd been anticipating the freaks I was still surprised - a curious curdle of anxious-stoke to find myself right on the peak of a novel freak. What to do but as the fool to the precipice... step into the unknown. Oscar is now four-something-months old - he stares into you with eyes that are vibrating dark-blue corridors to the stars. From the depths is a perceptible pull, and with a slow twist at the corners of his mouth that flashes to a smile... I'm gone. "Where are we going son?" "Gurgle... (through the illusion)" From the lab to stay-at-home dad. The transition is going to be quick. To say I'm looking forward to it would be well understated. Flying down the face of Autumn before banking into a big arcing bottom-turn through winter on this freak-set offers an open canvas of potential. The next twelve months, maybe more, will be fluid. Freedom to focus on exploring ideas through print-making, illustration and sculpture in various forms. For this we head to the south side of Dublin near the sea; close connections to the creative community there will open up more opportunity for progression and collaboration. Perhaps it's the unforeseen yet an appropriate manifestation of where my consciousness had been leaning over the past few months. A lot of thinking about riding new lines, pulling fins, sliding new frontiers. There's a inflatable mat in the post on its way over from Australia and fins to follow. Contact has been made with a Mayo-based shaper to collaborate on some alternate sliding vessels including some Derek Hynd inspired directions. The thought of loosening up the whole approach to wave-riding is sending sparks flying. New output both online and out into some local markets will be coming soon. Interesting times ahead.