Monday, 21 December 2015


Owlhoot on the hill.
One by one the stars take up
their rightful places.

There was much talk of a magnetic storm last night, at least over on Twitter, and the aurora was heading south. So I got out the camera and tripod and set up on Smelly Bridge, the closest vantage point that I could get to without squelching through fields... as you see, a thirty second exposure gives a nice view of the skyline, the Plough, and... no aurora. Hey ho. Maybe Smelly Bridge isn't high enough, and maybe it isn't north enough.

Prelim sketch for a tattoo design for someone. Hares' faces are an interesting mix of colours.

This morning the sky is clear as anything, Venus is so bright that I thought at first there was an aeroplane with a searchlight on, till it hadn't moved for long enough to make that improbable. Before I could detect the first signs of dawn, the heron crooked from the river as it does every morning - a single cronk as it sets off to work - then the crows answered, and presently the bare trees on the skyline showed against the sky, and the robin began singing. Soon, if the last few days are anything to go by, the mistle thrushes will be calling all up and down the valley, holding firm in their belief that if they call loud and slow enough, we'll understand.

Happy solstice! We've reached the turn.