Friday, 26 September 2008

Sky Watch Friday 7

A set of pictures of the sun rise through this week and indicating the changing season.
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Thursday, 18 September 2008

Skywatch Friday 6

Flight Path to Heaven

We have had blue skies today with wall to wall sunshine. Who could ask for any thing more.
Just as I was thinking Skywatch would be without pictures, the sun set and displayed these vapour trails. Worthy of Skywatch I think.
Have a good SWF everyone.

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Wednesday, 17 September 2008

The Knitting and Stitching Show

Last Saturday, mac's niece and I were taken by my son in law to the Knitting and Stitching Show held at the NEC in Birmingham.

The theme was The Hyperbolic Reef System.

This all started way back in 1997 when Dr Diana Taimina, a professor at Cornell University, astounded the scientific world by realising the first physical model of a hyperbolic plane in crocheted yarn.
Using the same mathematical technique, two Australian sisters, Christine and Margaret Wertheim, conceived the idea for a Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef.

Margaret Wertheim, founder of the Institute for Figuring, visited London in March 2008 and led the workshops to teach the hyperbolic crochet technique.
Following the workshops the Craft Council and the Southbank Centre invited participants to initiate the start of a new UK Reef and share what they had learnt with friends and groups across the country.

The resulting UK Reef is an eclectic fusion of traditional craft techniques and experimental crochet methods using an imagiative selection of found and recycled materials.Throughout the duration of the
exhibtion more people will contribute coral forms so that the UK Reef will grow.
These alien like boulders adorned with crochet coral are inspired by artifical

"reef balls"that are submerged in the sea by conservationists, to encourage the colonisation of coral ecosystems and provide new homes for marine wildlife.
Artifical reef projects exist all over the world, including the UK.

The project, organised by the Los Angeles based Institute for Figuring is a direct response to the plight of coral reefs from pollution and global warming.
For more information please visit

or e mail

We spent a long and lovely day viewing the many and varied craft exhibits. Watching so many artists displaying their techniques as well as their completed work .
Spending quality time with skilled people, who so enjoyed explaining the methods used to complete a project.
Should you have the chance to attend this show then I hope that I have given you an insight to the sheer enjoyment you will experience.
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Thursday, 11 September 2008

Friday Sky Watch 5

The Poetry of Cloud Formation.

by Stephen Davenport

Hamlet: Do you see yonder cloud that's almost in shape of a camel?
Polonius: By the mass,and 'tis like a camel, indeed.
Hamlet: Methinks it is like a weasel.
Polonius: It is backed like a weasel.
Hamlet: Or like a whale?
Polonius:Very like a whale.

In this exchange from Act 111 of Hamlet, Shakespear might merely be using the whimsical nature of clouds to highlight the obsequious side of the courtier Polonius; but who has not,on a lazy day,watched the clouds changing from one form to another, hostage to the capricious wind?
On the face of it, August looks like it might have been an ideal month for this kind of indolance, having been the second cloudiest across the UK in 130 years of records.
Much of this cloud, though, was the featureless grey variety that simply does not lend itself to flights of the imagination.
Every now and then, though, we saw those showery days with the sun bursting out between bouncy white cumulus clouds, with a sharpe shower here and a rainbow there: the sorts of skies beloved of Constable, Turner and anybody who wishes to turn a mass of water vapour into, say, a sheep.
On such days the sky can be populated by a whole zoological garden of cloud species. And 'species'is the mot juste, both metaphorically and figuratively.
Most people are familiar with the broad categories of cloud or genera, such as cumulus, cumulonimbus, altocumulus and cirrus.
But these can be sub-divided into a species, and even further into sub-species or varieties.
For example, stratocumulus stratiformis opacus, the drab type of which we have seen so much.
A personal favourite rejoices under the classification altocumulus stratiformis translucidus perlucidus- or medium-level heaped cloud in a layer but of a translucent character with gaps between the cloud elements.
The traditional, more poetic, and far briefer, description would be 'mackerel sky'; but Luke Howard,a hero in meteorology in the 19th century, recognised the need for , and formulated, a more universal system based on the Linnaean pattern of classifications.
Howard's cloud sketches even inspired Constable; and Turner.
To many of us though, a cumulus will always look like a brassica oleracea- or cauliflower.
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Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Coral Reef

Mac's niece and I are going to a Craft Show in Birmingham this weekend.
One of the themes is the Coral Reef.
A display of this theme will be on view at the venue, of stitched work.
Visitors are invited to bring their own bit to add to the reef.
Playing around I made these, the white bit is ment to represent Fan Coral,
it has been hard drying the sugar starch in this weather.
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Friday, 5 September 2008

Sky Watch Friday 4

What an artist Mother Nature is.

All of these photographs were taken over the space of ninty minutes, on the same evening.
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