On the 23rd of July, I attended the Scottish Graduate School of Arts and Humanities (SGSAH) showcase held at the Lighthouse, Centre for Design and Architecture in Glasgow – a versatile venue for the varied exhibitions and performances to take place. The event opened with choral singing, storytelling and opera with explanations on how aspects of the performances were part of the research process for each PhD candidate. Downstairs was the exhibition of practical research and visual displays of theoretical research. I personally found the showcase my most productive experience in terms of dissemination and having valuable conversations with both fellow researchers and the public. I spoke to Nicole Kipar, researcher at Heriot Watt University and costume designer with whom I share the common interest of Grimm’s fairy tales. We had a conversation about motifs in stories and recent research on this; Nicole subsequently emailed me some of the references she had been referring to. During the evening I met fellow doctoral researchers, some of whom have overlapping interests and discussed ideas around our research topics. I was also fortunate to speak to a guest who works with mental health patients about storytelling and how it allows emotions to be expressed that otherwise remain hidden. There is something about focusing on telling a story through different means that allows thoughts to be aired, which relates to what I am trying to do with my work. It was refreshing to talk about the practical elements of my work – the feel of the paper, the look of the characters – some people commented on them being like cave paintings, a style of image-making I had looked into at the start of my research, which was affirming for me as a visual communicator. Overall, the showcase was a chance to experience practical projects  – performance, visualisations and other ways to communicate research findings, other than writing papers. It proved a rich and viscerally informing experience that, in my opinion, is highly important to the dissemination of research practice across all disciplines.

My stand at the SGSAH showcase.
My stand at the SGSAH showcase.

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