Thursday, 28 June 2012

Artblogging: three pretty scrapbooks

Form is Void is a picture blog that I’m not sure how better to describe. Above, from a post of Richard Oelze images. Another post that stood out for me was on Robert John Thornton’s Temple of Flora botanical prints.

Similar picture-heavy and word-light is But Does it Float, where this and other engravings by Albin Brunovsky can be found.

Chaudron is likewise an eye blog. Here’s someting from a post collecting photographs of wind instruments.

Extra - added 7 July 2012:

Ampere’s And: Books and bits.

All My Eyes: Some words as well as pictures, of tennis in Zanzibar, and gunpowder labels, and submarine insignia, and ahh, ugly tomatoes.

Gibbon: A selection of daubers, scratchers, and snappers, snipped and stuck by Limbolo.

Tigerloaf: A very lovely blog by one Dylan Thomas Hayden.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Twit Archive - 10-30 April 2011

Lots more on Libya, plus a couple of links to the Weimar Art blog to posts Ride a Bike and With Love From Russia. The above image comes from that Russia post, a photo by Dmitry Debabov, The “Krasin” ice-breaker in the Arctic, 1936.

Tweets below the fold.

Twit Archive - 1-9 April 2011

Lots of Libya tweets, and one moon tweet. Above is a detail of a jolly Soviet moon illustration from 1965, one of hundreds of images in this Man in Space! Flickr set, tweeted by Tom Gauld.

Tweets below the fold.

Twit Archive - 21-31 March 2011

These tweets are from the start of NATO action in Libya, plus a few on Syria, Yemen, Egypt, and even a little art for relief. Above, an illustration by Czech animator and artist Jiri Trnka, from this 50 Watts post.

Tweets below the fold.

Monday, 25 June 2012

Pilot Sadie! Wake up!

A painting from my 2007 picture book, Sadie the Air Mail Pilot, with some of the preparatory work.

Artblogging: rockets, jackets, and sprockets

Dreams of Space: Non-fiction children’s books about space flight from 1945-’75. The above image is from You and Science (1955). A bibliography here.

Marble River’s Ephemera: 20th century popular illustration, records, toys, and suchlike. Above image from a series of posts on Dell Mapbacks.

genedeitchcredits: Animator Gene Deitch blogs on people “who were vital to my advancement and my growth” as he explains in the Overture. So far I’ve only read his post on Maurice Sendak, which includes a treasure trove of detail on their work together.

Sunday, 24 June 2012

A full day in London

Yesterday was another of those saturdays filled with running around with the kids to various arrangements. Peggy was invited to her friend Maddy’s birthday party, so the first thing on my list was to walk down to the Owl Bookshop to get a present. For a midsummer birthday I picked Moominsummer Madness.

Back at the house, cousins had arrived to go to a drama class with Peggy while I took Bo to get a haircut, and then on to his guitar lesson.

After guitar, lunch in hand, we took a bus into Marylebone where Bo was playing in a little piano concert with fellow students of Paul Tame. Susanna met us there, having picked up Peggy and cousins from drama, passed cousins on to grandparents, and Peggy on to Maddy’s party which was to begin with rock climbing and end with a sleepover.

The piano concert was for a small audience of family members, a presentation as part of preparing for grade exams. We listened to some wonderful young players. There’s no shortage in this world of children able to do clever things, given the chance.

After the concert we had to buy a cricket helmet. Bo has inherited an unusually think skull from his father, so none of the helmets at his cricket club fit him.

On the way home, we passed by Gosh Comics, where Bo got a Lucky Luke comic and I bought a children’s board book for myself, Little Fur Family by Margaret Wise Brown and Garth Williams, pictured above. I love the work of both of them, but had never before read this hirsute classic. It was as wonderful as I’d hoped.

In the evening I left the house again, going to the Strand for a very enjoyable ‘droggy blink’ get together arranged by Bob from Brockley and attended by Francis Sedgemore, Jams O’Donnell, Flesh is Grass, Carl Packman, James Bloodworth, Michael Ezra, and more. A particular pleasure was meeting transatlantic visitor The New Centrist for the first time.

The night ended with Bob talking about the central part played by Communists in America’s 20th Century folk music movement. This was in reference to Burl Ives, subject of one of my recent guest posts at Bob’s Beats. In turn I talked about Forest School Camps where singing folk songs, both American and British, is a central part of their wild camping trips for children. I enjoyed hearing Bo come back from his most recent camping trip singing Process Man and Blackleg Miner. Thankfully the experiences described in these songs are as remote to my children as those in Burl Ives’s whaling songs were to me as a boy.

Peggy and Maddy have a favourite FSC song too, Queenie, AKA Strip Polka. Oh dear!

Illustration from Little Fur Family, story by Margaret Wise Brown, pictures by Garth Williams. Copyright 1946 by Harper & Row Publishers, Inc. Illustrations copyright renewed 1974 by Garth Williams.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Before and after torture

“Until now, as far as Syria goes I have always defended the principles of Westphalian law and those of national sovereignty and no intervention. I have denounced neo-colonial wars in Afghanistan, in Iraq or in Libya, led by economic motives and geostrategic considerations, whose ‘humanitarian’ aims were no more than crudely dressed-up pretences. 
“But in view of the horror I have witnessed, for each of those men I have seen atrociously mutilated by barbarians serving a dictatorship whose outrages and degree of ferocity I could never have imagined, I now join in their call for military intervention in Syria, which will overthrow the abominable Baath regime: even if the country has to sink into civil war, if that terrible descent is necessary, it must be pursued in order to put an end to forty-two years of an organised terror, of whose proportions I had no idea.”
From Syria - A Journey to Hell : in the heart of the Syrian Intelligence Service prisons by Pierre Piccinin, Belgian historian and political scientist.

On his most recent visit to Syria he was imprisoned and tortured. The article contains his graphic descriptions of the torture he experienced and torture he witnessed. Prior to this he had been a vocal opponent of military intervention and had portrayed media coverage of the Syrian protest movement as Western propaganda. For examples see this August 2011 article at Global Research, this January 2012 article from SANA, the Assad regime's news agency, this March 2012 article at Counterpunch, and this May 2012 article on RT Russia Today.

Via Michael D Weiss.

Sparky and Soda

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Flipping sides at Bob’s Beats

Above, Carmen Amaya performing in the film Los Tarantos, 1963.

I’ve recently contributed a couple of guest posts to Bob’s Beats, a music blog offshoot of the renowned Bob from Brockley blog. Bob is currently going through a ‘First and Last’ theme, explained here. My posts are First and Last EPs, Country Guitar Vol. 6 and Gunpowders, and First and Last LPs, flamenco dancers and sea shanties, musicals and clowns.

Please have a look and a listen, and I hope you enjoy them!