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Post-Roadshow Report Card - University of Derby


Dave waving at the crowd in Derby. Wave back everyone!

The last, final, terminal and ultimate stop on the tour - University of Derby today. And what a lovely day to finish on, if I say so myself:
  • Student Turnout - 7/10. Good but not great numbers, but a very enthusiastic and engaged crowd, which more than made up for it.
  • Number of Questions Asked - 9/10. Lots and lots, which is always great. It demonstrates that people are thinking about things, and want to know more.
  • Number of group hugs by Tom, David and Duncan - 1/1. But only very briefly, as to be honest it felt a bit odd.
  • Ability to handle the assignment - 7/10. Pretty good all round. Some very resourceful shots, and some very thorough invoices and business stuff. But I'd expect nothing less from a degree in Commercial Photography.
  • Pleasure factor caused by being in the same room all day - 10/10. Ah, the joy of not having to pack the gear up every hour or so and traipse around the campus - cheers Mark!
  • Quality of Tea and Cakes - 6/10. It kept coming all day long, which is what we like.
  • Number of Students in the Audience who were also in the presentation - 1/1. For the last time this year, a star appearance by one of my work experience guys.
  • Number of free Fairground rides taken during the assignment - 1/1. You know when I went on about "enjoy your work/love what you do" in the talk. Well, this guy was listening!
And there we have it. 14 dates, 2 very long months, more mileage, hotel rooms, goodie bags to pack, and early starts than I can shake a stick at. Over the next few days I'll do some rounding up on the blog, and I've got a couple of things up my sleeve before I sign off until next year, but for now here's the requisite credits and thanks:
  • First off, thanks to David and Dennis at Nikon, and Duncan and James at Calumet. It's a cliche I know, but I couldn't have done it without you. Besides which, the premier travel inns would have been really lonely without you guys around. I can't thank you guys enough for all the hard work you've put in.
  • Thanks also to Andy Taylor at Calumet, and Jeremy and James at Nikon - these are the guys who, like the man from Del Monte, say "yes" to the entire thing, and let us guys go swanning off all over the country for weeks on end!
  • Special thanks to John McDonald, for starting the ball rolling this year.
  • Big up to my critiquing homies - Simon Leach, Emma Taylor, and Marco Crisari. All 3 of them came along to separate events (ULCAN, Sheffield Norton, and UEL respectively) to offer their input during the assignment critiques, and in Emma and Marco's case, also gave portfolio assessments too. I should point out that I get paid to do this tour, and these guys don't, so extra special thanks there.
  • Thanks, rather obviously, to all the lecturers and academic support staff who've helped us out and sorted things out at their end as we've gone along. We've had a great time, and there are already mutterings about another tour next year.
  • And last, but not least, enormous thanks to all the students who I've been ranting at for 2 months now. I hope you've enjoyed it, and if you haven't I hope you've learnt something, although ideally you've managed both. Extra praise goes out to all those who took up the assignment, well done to all of you. To those of you who took the assignment brief and then never came back - shame!
That's it for this year. Stay tuned here for a little while at least, as I've got a few things planned before the blog goes to sleep for a bit.

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Post-Roadshow Report Card - Nottingham Trent University


James in action at Nottingham Trent - fatherhood hasn't changed him at all.

Lurking at my folks' at the moment after a day at Nottingham Trent, here's how it all went:
  • Student Turnout - 6/10. Not loads of people, admittedly, though a good turnout for the flash demo in the afternoon.
  • Number of questions asked - 8/10. Brilliant, lots of incisive, well thought out questions, both after the talk, and after the flash demo.
  • Quality of tea and cakes - 7/10. Huge thanks to Hugh for pampering us all day long with caffeine based drinks.
  • Tom's ability to find the toilet - 3/10. This is getting to be an embarassing habit! Mind you, I defy anyone to find their way round the NTU campus without a map or GPS system, it's a bloody maze!
  • Number of extra Nikon personnel who were lurking in the background, and then left to go off and fly in helicopters - 2/2. Lucky sods. They claim there won't be space in the choppers for them, and that it's only for the UK press launch of the D3s, but I think they were having me on.
  • Ability to Handle the assignment - 7/10. Pretty good attempts - but you'll never get £800 from ID magazine (more's the pity!)
  • Percentage of students who now know loads more about the inner working of their Nikons, and how to make pretty pictures with flash - 87%. Just couldn't find a way of expressing that as a mark out of 10!
And you'll be glad to hear that "Mini-Zierold" who joined the team back in October, actually has a name, and it's Jemima. Much better than "mini-Zierold" in my opinion!

Derby tomorrow, then, finally, that's it. For now.
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