The first draft of the ‘Outside In’ Mural is in! It reminds me of “Ophelia“, but with optimism and microbes instead of Shakespearean tragedy!
What’s really apparent to me when I look at this is how different mine and MURUGIAH’s approaches to communicating research themes are. He seems to be exploring research themes metaphorically, with many ideas hinted at rather than expressed explicitly. It’s a departure from how I would usually try and communicate – directly and straightforward, probably via a press release, but without leaving much scope for someone to take their own interpretation from.
I was initially worried that research ideas would be portrayed ‘incorrectly’ or overstated (something unfortunately not unheard of within microbiome research) but actually I think this medium allows for ideas to be expressed clearly without having to worry about clarification and ensuring everything is evidenced, because it is inherently a reflection of ideas, rather than cold, hard facts.
I’m really looking forward to seeing how it develops, and to hearing what people think.
We’re yet to find a public place for its display prior to the showcase for all of the ECR projects in February 2019, but I will be presenting a little about the project to other academics at the London Microbiome Meeting on the 24th October, so if you’re a researcher in the field, come along then.