Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Ducks North Fife March

Eight of them giving 4 or 5 eggs per day, 2 drakes and an unknown (hatched in the summer). Here they are free ranging the garden lawn. Each have a place in the pecking order as can be seen in the dominate drake. Fantastic characters each in an ever evolving group dynamic which is fascinating to observe. The Lawn is free of wee invertebrates and the like, just needs cutting.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Google Street View North Fife

Google Street View North Fife, Today I noticed this video camera car in the High Street Newburgh North Fife, coincidentally tonight on channel 4 news covered the subject. The driver grumbled a wee bit about out of date maps were since he had to cover all byways and highways on his patch. Apparently, yesterday the vehicle recorded my own house with the family sitting in the garden who were shocked to hear on the news tonight that in Britain faces and car number plates have to be obscured. How silly, carried through to all photographic, video and film footage that has and is produced is a very odd proposition. Fear of the new. There is nothing wrong with transparency, it is the essence of how it honestly is or was if viewed later.

Spot the difference, is this really how some people would have it? A far more and potentially pernicious aspect of British society is the profusion of surveillance cameras everywhere. We are the most watched peoples in the world.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

St Andrews North Fife Spring Day

St Andrews North Fife Spring Day. Entering West Port along South Street to St Andrews Cathedral turning and into North Street on a very pleasant spring day.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Yvonne McLeod North Fife

Yvonne McLeod and The Three Legged Dug Ceilidh Band.

The Three Legged Dug Ceilidh Band with the renowned Yvonne McLeod on Accordian playing at The Tayside Institute Newburgh North Fife Scotland. A wonderful evening in aid of Newburgh Community Trust.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Tay Riverside Dundee

Tay Riverside Dundee, A blustery day on the River Tay. Might already have been said by the worlds worst poet, William McGonagall. Looking across to North Fife and The Tay Road Bridge. You can see it will not take much of a sea level rise to inundate much of riverside Dundee.

Tay Road Bridge heading to North Fife. It's a joy that the bridge tolls have been removed but an impediment still remains. Today it was the wind.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Steeple Arts Raku

Steeple Arts Newburgh North Fife. Yesterday, Moyra Stewart a studio holder and potter Raku fired pieces and tested various glazes which when conditions are just right in the firing, temperature, surrounding atmosphere, the metal oxides are reduced to their original metallic colours giving amazing lustrous qualities.

Moyra transferring a red hot 960c raku ceramic bowl onto a bed of shredded paper which is then covered with more and the whole sealed with an inverted cover to exclude oxygen. Raku clay is a mixture designed to withstand thermal shock of which it has plenty.

The outcome of this particular firing. It's a fabulous technique and anyone interested could benefit from reading the publication below.

Ceramicists searching for new ways to fire their creations now have a wealth of options. Authors James Watkins and Paul Wandless, along with a group of distinguished artisans, demonstrate in detail how to build low-cost, low-tech, yet high-quality kilns and varied firing techniques. The plans range from an easy, affordable and versatile Raku Kiln to a unique wood-fuelled Downdraft Stovepipe Barrel kiln. These clever devices make it possible to produce rich surface effects from alternative reduction firing techniques. In addition to showing the basic procedures for using each kiln, easy-to-follow directions for many fast-fire methods unfold in color photographs: you'll see how to achieve terra sigillata surfaces with direct chemical application and how to do traditional crackle-glaze raku and smoke finishes.Alternative Kilns and Firing Techniques: Raku - Saggar - Pit - Barrel (Lark Ceramics Books)

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Teapots North Fife

Teapots North Fife photographs. Part of my plunge into the archive material of Tibetan Peoples and artefacts. These are good examples of Tibetan craftsmanship, copper bodies with gilded decoration. The stem cup has a ceramic bowl, H.H. Karmapa has a jade one.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Rumtek Monlam

Rumtek Monastery Monlam preparations. Part of north fife photographic archive is this photograph showing the main Temple with the summer palace behind and beyond that the retreat centre and the temperate rain forest. Interestingly the trees are or were festooned in orchids and philodendron like climbing plants which provided fodder for milking cows.

Spring Ploughing North Fife

Spring Ploughing North Fife, although today was very cold with light snow showers the tractors are out getting ready for spring sowing, as always when the ground is turned birds follow for a feast of wee beasties just as in the garden usually a robin will be close by when one digs the earth. In the case of the fields and this instance, it's seagulls.

Monday, March 02, 2009

Nepal North Fife Photographs

Within months of moving to north fife from the borders I spent 3 months undertaking a photographic commission to create an archive of Tibetan Monastic culture. In Nepal I took a holiday and walked most of the way to Annapurna base camp this was a typical village in early April where most rooftops were covered in peas to dry.

Fuel for cooking is wood, wood that is getting more scarce and since this photo huge deforestation is in process and consequent soil erosion. This is how it's transported.

At an altitude of 8 to 9 thousand feet forests of Rhododendron prevail massive compared to garden examples I and maybe you are used to. I remember that the only way to find the trail through was noticing crushed ladybirds from previous walkers.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Historical Handbook Scotland North Fife

The Historical Handbook to Scotland. North Fife has many entries. In alphabetical order and covering 380 pages, integrated between the 260 entries for the Cities, Towns and Villages; are 420 Castles, Palaces and Stately Homes; 70 Cathedrals, Abbeys and Churches; 90 Battles, Rebellions and Invasions and 110 Distilleries and Golf Clubs. Each entry starts with the subject, region and location, and is followed by the historical beginnings, historical developments and a modern day summary. It's size and diversity is likely to appeal to tourists, while it's conciseness and chronological order makes it a useful tool for academics and it's variety with detail will further enrich the sense of history of native Scots. Along with it's very reasonable price relative to the content, the Handbooks size, conciseness and variety encourages the reader to explore more in and outwith the book. The Historical Handbook to Scotland A very good reference book.

Folk Opera Sikkim North Fife Photographs

North Fife Photographs. These views relate to earlier posts of Tibetan life at Rumtek monastery Sikkim India at New Year. This folk opera takes place in a terraced garden in front of the Summer Palace backed by a peach orchard and enacts the lifetimes of H.H. Gyalwa Karmapa. It is repeated daily at the end of which everyone has learned the history of The Karma Kagyu Lineage. It has much dancing and song. The 1st incarnation was Dusum Khyenpa 1110-1193 AD and through to the 16th Ranjung Rigpe Dorje.