Pandemic Pondering #195

Change is the prompt word for the Art Group for Saturday.

Is there a word more significant for Pandemic Pondering in a Pandemic. Change is the most unmentioned symptom of this whole Covid-19 period.

Percy the Peacock is the perfect example of the correct way to cope with change.

Most of the time he responds beautifully.

Sometimes he reacts….

Everyone prefers it when Percy responds!!

So being a wise bird, he reverts to responding. It’s better for everyone.

There is so much change for everyone right now, some of it’s pretty unwelcome and reacting is understandable, but it is always possible to upgrade a reaction to a response.

When confronted with change be more Percy!

#bemorepercy

Pandemic Pondering #136

August 2nd. Prompt word for Drawn to the Valley is Seascape. I loaded up a series of random images that represent seascapes in my image file.

None of them are aspirational. Some, like the one above, are fictional. Some are painted. Humdrum would be the word. Seascapes captured in daily life, none involving exotic locations. All within an hour of home or work. All give me the space to think.

An explanation of August Pandemic Ponderings.

Drake’s Island, Plymouth Sound.

This stretch of water is known as Firestone Bay. In this picture, it is masquerading as a Mediterranean Port. As an artist it eludes me. There are more versions of this on my painter/artist ‘Wall of Shame’ than any other single subject.

The next three are my drone-9 fantasy seascapes. In truth they are the drivers-eye view in a car wash.

The Mewstone,Wembury, a cup of tea.

One of the best places I know to contemplate my life. Many of life’s treasures and tribulations get thinking time here.

A recent painting. Still unsold.

Portwrinkle Beach, Cornwall. I have a friend who creates the most beautiful textile art inspired by this beach. Her amazing talent at harvesting the beauty of this little known beach is inspirational.
https://www.rippengale.com/

The next picture is one that illustrates another friends wisdom. He is a wise and talented photographer. I asked him once which was the camera he would recommend?.

“The one in your hand when the perfect shot appears”

Hannah caught this with her phone, at Widemouth Bay.

Finally another painting. Dungeness.


Seascapes just another excuse to ponder…

Advent#6

Why an advent blog? Actually why not, theoldmortuary blog is a flimsy insubstantial thing. A daily pondering of no real significance, so why not ponder productively whilst the evenings are long.

Advent is not solely the possession of the Christian Church, like many things considered to be Christian, it was a pagan tradition beforehand. Advent in the Northern hemisphere belongs to December when the days are short and the weather intemperate. Some days feel as if almost nothing is achieved within daylight hours. The long dark evenings are good for cosy activities like reading or indeed pondering. Advent ponders are whatever crops up in my day that makes me think…
Today it’s baubles.

These amazing baubles hang in a local garden centre. These particular ones have travelled from Slovakia, others from the Ukraine, but most come from China and in particular Yiwu.

This article from The Guardian in 2014 explains their production.
https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/architecture-design-blog/2014/dec/19/santas-real-workshop-the-town-in-china-that-makes-the-worlds-christmas-decorations

Gisella Graham is a bauble designer and wholesaler. theoldmortuary has loads of her baubles, some from the Garden Centre and some from Liberty, London. The ones we mostly buy are London inspired, they also make great gifts for our family and friends abroad. I’m unsure where I thought baubles came from, but it wasn’t factories in China or wholesalers near the Elephant and Castle. Like Yiwu, Elephant and Castle is not a remotely Christmassy location. I only mention this because I once got lost nearby and discovered this bauble Mecca. Just as in China, normal people work there. No Elves. Shame.
https://www.giselagraham.co.uk/contact-us/

I’m sure the baubles of my youth came from Poland and Hong Kong. They were fine and fragile. None have survived my many moves. These random thoughts have inspired me to research the history of the bauble.

Germany was the home of the first blown glass bauble in the 16th Century. Hans Grenier produced glass beads and tin figures in the small town of Lauscha. In the next two centuries, the growing popularity and commercial success of his original decorations inspired other glass blowers in the town to make baubles. By 1880, F W Woolworth had discovered the German baubles of Lauscha and started to import them, despite bauble manufacturing beginning in New York in 1870. This German business grew and flourished until the end of World War Two.

After WW2, the Lauscha bauble factories became state owned and production ceased. However, after the Berlin wall came down most of the companies re-established themselves as private companies. They positioned themselves as high-end manufacturers, not competing with mass production and continue to produce baubles of very high quality.

Meanwhile, to fill the gap created by the closure of the Lauscha producers after WW2, mass production of baubles started, in the second half of the twentieth century, in Poland, other Eastern European countries, Mexico and China.

My recollection of Hong Kong baubles proved to be correct. During the Korean war, there was an American embargo on China. Hong Kong quickly increased its manufacturing capability not only to produce the products it would normally import from China but also produced enough goods to export to the rest of the world replacing China’s output. Glass blowing had been established in Hong Kong in the 1920’s, so inevitably baubles became another mass produced item that Hong Kong could export all over the world.

Bauble pondering, a journey of changing destinations, sometimes caused by war. Fascinating.

Friday

This stretch of mud is one of my favourite sights. It appears on the banks of the Tamar. Pill Creek feeds into the main River at Saltmill; at low tide its serpiginous track into the main body of water is clear to see. There are many others that can be seen from the road bridge but this one is easy to get close to on foot. I never plan my walks to deliberately to see it but serendipity is kind several times a year. Time stops still for a bit when I catch it at perfection. It recalibrates me until the next time.