-- Russ Hunt
The Inkshed conference was the host of my first scholarly presentation. When I came, I felt doubly apprehensive since I was the only graduate student attending, and one whose presentation spoke of experience and values outside the institutional context. However, the welcome and acceptance I received was overwhelming. No one spoke condescendingly to me, and no one put on a dry, professional bearing. When it was my turn to speak, I felt relaxed, as I was truly speaking to peers and friends, not judges. When I read the inksheds about my presentation, I was able to see that people had deeply engaged with what I had said. I also enjoyed inkshedding after other presentations and getting to know people during meals and walks. When I left the Inkshed conference, I felt I had found true friends and colleagues. There is such warmth and joy at this conference, as well as intellectual energy, that I want to come back again and again.
Final Reflections: The hospitality of Lorri and Allen; the seriousness of Inkshedders, who equate ink/action with the generative; the magnificent run I had on Saturday afternoon out to Indian Point where Merle's parents have their home; the good sense of the organizers to build in free time for reading and reflection; and, finally, the return on intellectual risk when you throw caution to the wind and attend a conference in which you are outside the social/scholarly circle. Much can (and did) come of that.
-- Tony Tremblay
-- Russ Hunt
Plunging into St. Margaret's Bay in the month of May far outstrips (?) polar-bear swims at New Year's in such sub-tropical climes as Vancouver or Victoria. I missed the event. I took a drive into Mahone Bay for some film. Other 'Shedders' were with me. My first stop was the Junkatorium where, lo and behold, there was the perfect porthole for my cottage. But no, what extravagance! What self-indulgence. I quickly escaped the shop in hopes I'd see something else, cheaper and lighter, to satisfy by urge to buy. Mahone Bay is one of those places you miss if you blink, so I had barely 'done' main street before running into another 'Shedder'. I told my story, expecting the voice of practical reason - it was my first Inkshed, remember - but instead I found myself being talked into buying a no. 5 porthole. I was the one uttering all the sensible things and my tone did not ring true. I bought the porthole and am left with this story as an allegory for Inkshed. The moral of the story: Since you never know when expectations may be foiled, expect the unexpected. Corollary: Don't be surprised if it doesn't happen.
Inkshed was a series of 'unexpecteds' for me. I met a wonderfully diverse and open group of people, learned about work which encourages me to carry on with mine and heard quips, anecdotes, stories and song, most of all song. Imagine my surprise, embarassment and delight when I discovered that the film used during my presentation on chance operations somehow got reloaded into my camera and resulted in a series of double exposures! There's one shot of me giving my presentation from the limb of a tree on the Chester-Windsor Road. In another, pairs of feet overlay a group of graduates at the Acadia convocation. Happy accidents, happy feet!
-- Michelle Forrest
Here is my Inkshed reflection: Nan and Sandy/Sam trading that guitar back and forth until 4 am while a couple of us bleary-eyed stragglers sat and listened. You people who go to bed early at Inkshed just don't know what you're missing.
-- Marcy Bauman