Conferences often have their perks,
and Leeds in particular has workshops, which I really enjoy.
They are often the hands-on, living history sort.
This year I did three (!)--
medieval food tasting (actually yummy!)
medieval dance workshop (I danced, so wasn't taking pictures)
and then the medieval painting.
Now as a painter I can barely color within the lines,
but it was fun to try the techniques of 'pouncing'
(brushing charcoal through small holes in a template paper
onto a surface- in this case treated linen-
and then outlining the holes, connecting the dots,
to form the pattern or drawing),
and mixing pigment with binder,
and get the feel of some of the materials.
Stuff like this I find extremely useful when teaching.
You never know when an anecdote or insight will brighten up a discussion.