How to be an explorer of the world

The Brief

Pointers were given by my tutors on how to start my city exploration. Big words I have to employ to find out the “what Do I know that I can’t know anywhere else?”. Discovery, investigate, read, observe, in-depth research, process, document, empathy, imagination, insight, learn, experience, journey. All is based on CURIOSITY.

I can express my findings through drawings, animation, print, photography, digital visualisation, stitch and/or other media, including sound. The body of work that I will produce should be substantial and communicate my ideas and imagination.

The themes are set:

  • Migration – people/ideas/material/industrial
  • Power/Technology – religion/politics/sustainability
  • The hidden city – the multiple guises or layers of city life

The Source

Primary – Newport city. Its structure, properties, social, materials, senses, history, geographical, temperatures and scientific.

Secondary – books, films, newspaper, magazines, internet, photographs.

Mosaic on the tunnel wall at Newport city centre

Mosaic on the tunnel wall at Newport city centre. Photo is Ayu Baker’s.


A helpful guide toward my exploration of Newport or other cities and places or things written by Keri Smith in her book “How to be an explorer of the world”:

  1. Always be looking (notice the ground beneath your feet).
  2. Consider everything alive and animate.
  3. Everything is interesting. Look closer.
  4. Alter your course often.
  5. Observe for long durations (and short ones).
  6. Notice stories going on around you.
  7. Notice patterns. Make connections.
  8. Document your findings (field notes) in a variety of ways.
  9. Incorporate indeterminacy.
  10. Observe movement.
  11. Create personal dialogue with your environment. Talk to it.
  12. Trace things back to their origins.
  13. Use all of the senses in your investigations.



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