If you’ve heard only one thing about Port Eliot this year, it was the mud. But the constant rain and ankle-deep mud did not sway the enthusiasm of the festival – Charleston dancers swung on tirelessly and the famous cycling-pianist carried his tune despite the weather. In our own tent, spirits were also high and working with such an energetic, passionate team really helped to make the most of the festival – which was truly magical!
We worked in pairs to document events from Thursday to Saturday – and there was so much to choose from; I found myself part of dance classes, night-time witch walks, life drawing, beekeeping demonstrations and feminist talks. I even pushed myself out of my comfort zone and interviewed Brian Selznick, a wonderfully animated illustrator and author. It was both exhausting and incredible!
Luckily, I consider myself a quick worker – usually sketching up images on the spot, and my drawing style enabling me to finish work faster. This was a huge help as we had tight deadlines in order to get everything printed (and folded) for the morning. The biggest help was definitely working with the other students, offering ideas between our written and illustrated work, plus keeping us laughing!
Working on the Murmuring Guillemot has been so much more rewarding than I expected. It was absolutely fantastic to gain experience in lots of different types of illustration. Apart from reportage, I produced spot illustrations, comics, a handy ‘mud-guide’ and even some hand-lettering. I feel so proud of what we’ve all produced, especially to see other campers with the latest edition whilst having breakfast, and to hear some really great feedback. I would recommend it to anyone.