Monthly Archives: July 2015

Singing: Prayer to a Guardian Angel: Patrick Hawes

Prayer to a Guardian Angel is from composer Patrick Hawes’ album Angels. It’s just the most hauntingly beautiful song. So I sent away for the sheet music. I have been privileged to meet and to be conducted by Patrick Hawes, … Continue reading

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Singing: Now Sleeps The Crimson Petal, Now The White (from the movie Vanity Fair)

This is the best recording I can get of this lovely song by Mychael Danna from the 2004 film version of Thackeray’s Vanity Fair, with Reese Witherspoon in the female lead (Becky Sharp).

The lyrics are from the sonnet by Alfred Lord Tennyson Now Sleeps the Crimson Petal Now the White Continue reading

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A Spookiness of Stones

Further to Eclipses and Cuckoos, a further nine stones, unearthed on our lottie over the past month or so. Where they had lain, are now sweetcorn and globe artichokes (and one cardoon, misidentified by the garden centre and masquerading as an artichoke).

They are very similar, cardoons and artichokes. You can eat cardoons – the stems – whereas it is the bud (the large globe) of the globe artichoke that is eaten.

What’s spooky about these nine stones? Continue reading

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Tumblr Features My Work : The Dust of Life

Tumblr emailed me to say they’d featured a couple of spreads from one of my Arthouse Coop Sketchbook Project sketchbooks in their BS Project. Continue reading

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Flint & Feather Resurrected

Above the laptop is a packet of radish seeds. A ball of string.
Adjustable spanner.
Two staplers.
Secateurs. Continue reading

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A Bad Photo Gone Good

I tried to take a photograph of rhubarb flowers (they’re the blurred whitish things).

Technically, it’s all wrong.

Yet, sometimes, a bad photo can be good.

Funny thing, beauty. Continue reading

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What I’ve Been Singing: Le Spectre de la Rose: Les Nuits d’Eté: Berlioz

I had a first-time try last Friday at singing some of the songs from Hector Berlioz’ song cycle Les Nuits d’Eté (Summer Nights) the texts for which came from six poems composed by Theophile Gautier.

I’ve had a CD for some years of the song cycle recorded by the late great Janet Baker, so I was not entirely unfamiliar with it. I never thought at the time that I’d one day be singing it.

The theme of the cycle is love, its progress from innocence to loss and renewal. The second song of the cycle, Le Spectre de la Rose, began as a work for piano – Afforderung zum Tanz (Invitation to the Dance) – written, in 1819, by Carl Maria von Weber. Continue reading

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Archeology and Hand Dyeing – Some Raspberry-Dyed Fabrics and Papers

Raspberry Dyed FabricsGrowing on our new allotment is a number of raspberry plants. They’re old and neglected, but still producing little fruits, though not particularly useful, food-wise.

Rather than wasting the harvest, I used it to dye some fabrics and papers. Continue reading

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Sunday is No-Spam Day

Sunday is No-Spam Day Continue reading

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A Dyeing Experiment Gone Right: Rhubarb Dyeing and Mordants

This image may not seem very exciting, but I proved something during this dyeing process.

A friend turned up the other day with a huge parcel of rhubarb leaves from her dad’s garden. She’d kept a promise to bring me some for dyeing purposes and had had them in her freezer for a couple of weeks. Continue reading

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