The Comfort Pursuit

Month in review: April 2017

April always feels like a very important month for me. It is when I started university and five years later graduated from it, and it is also when I started my Masters and two years later graduated from it… And it is the birthday of one of the most important people in my life: my mother.

So, this was taken seriously, and here is what happened:

Research

I finished a role as guest editor of a special issue on Green and Grey Infrastructure for the Landscape Review Journal. I also slowly started to get back to a research on climate adaptation which has been waiting to be completed – hopefully next month I will have more info on this one.

Writing

This is what took most of time this month. I finished the final revision of a ‘revise and resubmit’ paper, which has now been resubmitted. I have also worked on another paper on the same category (‘revise and resubmit’) which I have revised and sent to a co-author, and it has just come back for final adjustments before resubmitting, so hopefully this will be finalised in May.

I have submitted an abstract to a special issue of an international journal, and an application for a small grant to support innovation in teaching.

Finally, I decided to give it a go on publishing in Portuguese. I haven’t written ‘proper’ Portuguese since 2010, and it was surprising how easy it was to put together the argument and structure (much easier than in English!), and how difficult it was to bring back the vocabulary. I found myself using Google Translator to find words and expressions in Portuguese. Embarrassing!

Teaching

As I mentioned before, this year I am not coordinating any subjects, only guest lecturing, and this month I had three lectures: Drawing for Urban Design and Urban Climate for Urban Geography and Design (EV2301); and Landscape Urbanism for Solving Wicked Environmental Problems (EV1000).

Also regarding teaching, I have played with some tools for blended learning used at JCU such as Collaborate and Doceri, as one of the subjects I will coordinate next year is studio-based and delivered both in Cairns and Townsville. Although I have been teaching architecture, landscape, and urbanism studios for almost 10 years, the distance/blended learning in this realm of creative disciplines is new for me, so I have been doing some work on it.

And still in teaching, today I have been officially nominated as an advisor at JCU, so I am now able to supervise Masters and PhD students. In June I will attend a training workshop for this role, so until then I am acting as co-advisor.

Learning

A couple of years ago I bought a semi-professional DSLR camera. I am a complete beginner in this space and like to think about it as a hobby rather than work. But truth be told, working in visual disciplines makes sense to take photography also as a work tool. So this month I restarted and completed a photography course which I had already attempted some time ago and had lost motivation. I even brought my photography website back to life, and it is now here.

 

This was it for April, and I just have to thank Ana Canhoto again for the inspiration and advice – I did keep a journal this month! When I sat down here to write this post I haven’t realised all that had actually happened in the last 30 days. This is an excellent motivation exercise!

4 thoughts on “Month in review: April 2017”

  1. Well, let me tell you that your blog is also an excellent motivation device for a portuguese PhD student in the UK. I can totally relate to the ‘writting in portuguese difficulties’ with vocabulary. Hopefully your example of writing these short summaries of your month will lead me to do the same, they are a great way to see the links between the small steps and the bigger picture.

    1. Hi Daniel, I am very glad you feel like these reflections motivate you. I used to read a lot of blogs while doing my PhD (most of which I still read), and they helped me as well. I believe Ana Canhoto is also Portuguese living in the UK, so we are all in the same boat! 🙂

      1. Thanks Ana! Most images there were taken with a smartphone, and I am a learner in the whole DSLR world. But I found useful to have an “album” where I can keep memories and motivate myself to learn more about it. Always great to have your comments! 😊

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