Saturday, 27 August 2016

Brindister from the air

Finally managed to fly my kite and use the GoPro. Just enough wind to keep both kite and camera up in the air. Here's the link to the film I shot:
Again it needs a good edit.....
Here are a few shots I grabbed from the screen
I'm on the hill in Brindister so there's the occasional glimpse of the voe. I like the way the kite strings float in and out of view, and the sound of the wind as the kite 'swooshes' through the sky.


Tuesday, 23 August 2016

More kite flying practice - sort of

J Kerr, flying with the Fulmars. Photo taken by Prof Steve Poole
Yesterday I learned that you can't fly kites in a fog... but that Fulmars can fly in anything. 

Went over the Sandness and walked along the headland looking for a suitably open space where I would terrify the sheep. Arrived at Scaaga, an area below Sandness hill and set out my kite. Then spent about half an hour trying to launch...finally managed a few turns in the sky before it came down too many times and I gave up. Long enough to attract a couple of passing and very interested Fulmars though.  

Fog is not good - it suppresses any air currents and certainly has a similar affect on sea. Still, it looks quite dramatic with the cliffs disappearing as the fog drifts across them. 
Banks Head, fog and Fulmars Photo by Prof Steve Poole

So I packed off and stomped off to draw ( can do that in any weather). I sat on the edge of this dramatic bit of coastline, watched Fulmars taunting me by flying close and wheeling overhead, and listened to the singing of the seals somewhere below me.
Photo by Prof Steve Poole
Managed a couple of drawings which turned into part drawing - part watery mess, and then sat trying to dry out a very soggy sketch book, which in a fog takes some doing. 
Sketchbook - Sandness 1

Sketchbook - Sandness 2

Sketchbook - Sandness 3

Will load my attempts to film the Fulmars (if it's any good) at some point... if I can work out how to get the film off the GoPro and onto my computer.

Fact of the day: Did you know you can catch fog.......
Large nets are used to 'catch' the fog, with tiny 1mm openings accumulating the tiny water droplets which drip off into a gutter which collects the water.
An average size fog catcher of 40m3 can capture up to 66 litres of water a day, plentiful enough to supply a brewery which creates 24,000 litres a year of its signature beer Atrapaniebla (meaning "Fog Catcher")

Monday, 22 August 2016

Shetland - summer 2016 - Brindister Voe

I've been back in Shetland since mid July and busy working in my studio making paintings for two forthcoming exhibitions - one in a group show of the Sea at the Kilmorak Gallery in Inverness-shire
And the other one is my solo show at Cadogan Contemporary in November... more on this at a later date.

I've also been out drawing - walking along the Brindister Voe - which we see as part of our back garden. Occasionally a fishing boat chugs along on the far side or even more rarely a kayak glides past, but most of the time there's no-one else around apart from the sea birds and the seals, and the occasional glimpse of an otter. 
Evening, Brindister Voe   
The light changes constantly, cloud passes swiftly, mist drifts in and across the hills.
Water-proof paper and charcoal/pastel and water
Thought I'd experiment with waterproof paper; using charcoal and pastel - the surface didn't seem to want to take this until I poured water over the surface and this happened.
Face of Neeans, Neeans Neep, Brindister
Thought I'd attempt a neat drawing (the artist Karen Wallis' influence - she was staying with us for a few days) but not sure that the word 'neat' is in my vocabulary when it comes to drawing. Enjoyed drawing the Fulmars wheeling around over the cliff.