Friday, April 29, 2016

6 word spring

joining Miriam for her 6 word story and photo meme

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Snap more animals

I have a third collection of animal statues from around town this week

The giraffes are made out of bits of junk metal by a sculptor who is a friend of friends (I've used them before on my blog)

The heraldic unicorn is on top of a tower in a park - I guess it was a gateway to something at some point in the past

The scottish decorated cow is outside a pub in the centre of town - I had to wait a bit to get a shot with no posing tourists

The dog satue was a gift from San Diego - a twin city to Edinburgh - to mark the fact that both cities have a story of an adopted stray dog - Grey Friar's Bobby in Edinburgh and this vagabond dog in San Diego - called Bum

enjoying all the weekly snap collections

Monday, April 25, 2016

Monday Memorandum musing on camellias

I thought I'd better snap some of the camellias I see on my walk as the current wind will probably blow a lot of the blooms off the bushes - such a delicate flower.

I do like to see all these anonymous looking bushes suddenly bloom for a short time each spring. 

But I'm more used to seeing white blooms as those were dominant in New Zealand where they are also used as a symbol of women gaining the vote.  They even feature on the $10 note which has a picture of Kate Sheppard who led the suffrage campaign.

Back in October 1893 when the campaign to give women the right to vote had succeeded in legislation being introduced in parliament, the women campaigning gave each member of parliament who they knew would support them a white camellia to wear on their lapel. 

The legislation passed- the first country to remove a gender qualification for parliamentary elections.

The day is still marked in New Zealand with many women attending a celebratory suffrage day breakfast, including several hosted by government ministers and senior women in other walks of life.  Often these include singing several suffrage songs.

I attended may such breakfasts while I was there and all the celebrations of the 100 year anniversary of women's suffrage in 1993.

Amazing what thoughts a pretty flower can trigger

Waving to you all and wishing you all a good week

Friday, April 22, 2016

6 word storied - enough

I couldn't decide which was the important question when contemplating buying a 3D pen

joining Miriam in her lovely meme

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Snap in flight

I always have my camera with me when I walk by the river but recently I've been walking with it in my hand rather than my pocket because the swans seem to be flying a lot recently and I want to capture them.  Due to their size they make quite a noise when flying which provides a good trigger to get the camera ready and then try to focus on the correct bit of sky.  They also make quite  a splashing noise as the walk on water as they gather speed to take off.

Last week there were several swans who seemed to be flying up and down the river - perhaps they are youngsters practicing.  It did mean that I had several opportunities to capture lift off, flight and the clumsy landing skid.  In amongst the many out of focus / empty bit of sky / obscured photos I did find a set of 4 to share

Big thank you to everyone who is joining in with snap - I do enjoy looking at all your visual sets each week

Monday, April 18, 2016

Memorandum Monday in 3D

Hello everybody and big waves on a blustery morning.

I had a fabulous new experience this week - a 3D party which involved a nice mix of techie geek, futurism and creativity. 

A lovely lady brought a 3D printer along to the house and set it printing while she talked about how it works. 

it took about 20 minutes to print this chain - fully interlocking links with no assembly afterwards - yes the printer can leave a small gap between the bits it prints and it can print a layer onto air - not just the platform or existing printing.  The flat layer at the bottom - called a raft - is broken off afterwards but is printed to provide a stable base for the shape. 

Good to be able to watch the printer at work without having to look over the heads of kids or past crowds as has been the case when I've seen 3D printers before at the science festival or makers faire.

Then we played with 3D pens - yes I know all pens are 3D in shape but these pens let you draw in 3 dimensions - they extrude plastic that dries immediately so you can draw on air - draw a line straight up - create a shape that will then stand up. 

The plastic comes in lots of lovely colours. 

I'd watched some videos and looked at images before hand and thought I'd make it easier for us all by printing out some basic shapes that we could use as templates - the dragons, sun, butterfly, paperclip and initials were all done this way.  Lots of fun and we all had a play.

This 3D party was our birthday gift to my Mum who is fascinated by 3D printers.  I came across the woman who runs the parties when browsing the people who would be at the makers faire and noticed she offered kids 3D parties so I contacted her and asked if she would do one for adults - and of course all family members were keen to be involved too.  She is now going to advertise that she will do adult parties too.  A fun new event enjoyed by all of us.

Hope you all have a good week

Friday, April 15, 2016

6 word laugh

Joining Miriam for her lovely meme - a photo and 6 words to tell a story

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Snap crafting

As I mentioned on Monday, I spent a lovely few hours at the Makers Faire on Sunday and tried my hand at 3 crafts that I had not tried before

Needle Felting (top image) - my piece is a bit bigger than a business card. I decided to go abstract and play with the lovely colours rather than try to create a picture of something recognisable.  A nice easy form of felting where you lay a piece of the wool fibre over your solid base and then stab it repeatedly with the special needle (keeping fingers well out of the way).  The colours mix nicely when layered and you can create different textures depending on how much wool you add and how often you stab it.  The lady showing us how to do it mentioned that wool keeps needles sharp so I intend to make this the top of a pincushion. I left some whispy bits hanging over the edge as I like the contrast of un-stabbed with stabbed.

Rag weaving (bottom image) - a real up-cycle of waste material here.  We used pieces of cardboard for the 'loom' and would around crochet cotton then wove in strips of fabric cut from old bedlinen (all smelling nicely of laundry soap).  It takes lots of strips to create a nice solid fabric.  I have woven onto cardboard before but using wool.  I found the fabric rather cumbersome to weave.

Inner tube jewellery (middle image) - those black strips are cut from the inner tubes of bicycle tyres - another great up-cycling craft.  The rubber is very easy to cut with scissors or a rotary cutter  - you can use paper punches on it too.  It feels surprisingly nice to handle, soft and pliable and you can then knot it together or knot it to strips cut from old t-shirts.  The ladies said that they got all of their inner tubes free from cycle shops as it saves the shop from paying to have them sent to waste.  If you have any inner tubes lurking in the garage or know people who do and you like a bit of crafting with scissors then I suggest you have a play.

3 interesting materials to play with and a good visual set for my snap - win win.

Loving all the snap sets you are sharing

Monday, April 11, 2016

Memorandum Monday after a busy weekend

A big wave to all you lovely Monday wavers.

I've had a busy weekend which included trying my hand at 3 new crafts and participating in some scientific research in the Antarctic.

Sunday was one of my favourite events of the year - the makers faire - a faire full of people interested in making things with a lovely range that includes making things with your hands and on computers.  I love an event that incorporates all these different forms of making things and where you can see a stall with a 3D printer next to one turning old fabric strips into rugs and then another inviting people to make a stop go film burst.

And lovely to see so many people eager to have a go - adults and kids. I'll share my new crafting experiences with you for snap on Wednesday.

This year there seemed to be a strong theme of using materials that would otherwise be thrown away - I loved this fire breathing spider made of metal scrap that was overseeing the courtyard

And then there was my research work on penguins.  I saw an item on the news about a University research group that is studying penguins but has so many photos from all their cameras that they need assistance in spotting the penguins.  You can go onto their site, look at a photo and then you are asked to mark the centre of every penguin that you can see - if you see a chick, an egg or another animal you mark them too

As well as using all this clicking to count the penguins they are hoping to use it to teach computers to identify penguins.

I thought I'd have a look - fun to see some penguin cam - and I must say I found it quite addictive.  Its a bit like those computer games where you have to find the list of objects.  and they cleverly show you the next photo as soon as you click to finish one - and then you start clicking on penguins again and before you realise half an hour has gone - at least it is helping research.  You can join in at
at penguinwatch .  You can mark a few images without signing up - I warn you it is addictive.

Hoping you all have a good week - I'm off to study penguins.

Friday, April 8, 2016

6 word dream

There is a display of various tiny houses in the middle of town as part of the Science Festival.  Some are used in post disaster aid and some are designed to replace static caravans and some are for urban living. 

Interesting to look at but I cannot imagine choosing to live in one - actually the living in a small space and turning the sofa into the bed etc would be OK but I would need another building at least the same size to keep my stuff in!! 

Joining Miriam for her 6 word story meme - with an epilogue this week.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Snap the Royal Mile

Another Edinburgh scene for you this week - taking in the Old Town and Salisbury Crags.

The Royal Mile is the main street of the Old Town and goes from the castle far right of photo and far right small photo

down the hill to Holyrood Palace (monarch's Edinburgh residence) which is off the end of the photo far left behind the bush.

Just next to the Palace is the new Scottish Parliament building - featured int he small photo on the left - I did walk further along the road for a good angle on the building

The middle small image shows people walking on the Crags - I always like seeing the little dots silhouetted against the sky

In the foreground is a good example of the mix of very old and moder architecture found all over Edinburgh

Monday, April 4, 2016

Memorandum Monday eclectic mix

Good morning to Sian and all the Monday wavers and readers.  I was sitting here thinking of something new I learnt or did and came up with a rather eclectic mix of lessons learnt or remembered

1. tulips can smell odd - these look lovely but have a slight peppery smell, not strong but the kind that you catch from time to time

2. but they don't smell as bad as rotting cauliflower - the first time my food waste caddy has smelt in the 6 months that I have had it 

3. that cheese would have been an easy discovery for our ancestors - according to the cheese maker giving a demo - unpasteurized milk in un-sterilized containers will form a simple cheese if just left to stand.  I often wonder how cooking discoveries were made.

4. that it really is a good idea to put a towel between the piece of wood you are screwing screws into and the table you are leaning on - I did remember before I started so a lesson remembered

5. that there is a glitch between blog comments and email - I am receiving a 'failure of mail delivery' message after I leave a comment on several blogs and several bloggers are not receiving email notification of comments.  I investigated online a bit and it seems to be due to new security measures and domain authentication - in my case an issue with all yahoo from New Zealand domain !!!  so not something I can remedy

A big wave to you all and hope you have an eclectically good week

Friday, April 1, 2016

6 words SUN

joining Miriam for her fun meme challenge to tell a story with a photo and 6 words