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.

Wednesday 16 December 2015

another starry picture

fireball over Alton Barnes's Leo, and a fireball, and the Alton Barnes white horse as seen from the canal near Honeystreet. Just a picture I wanted to do; and the generator charged up the boat batteries while I had the big computer running so that I could do the digital processing....

Been v busy sending off Christmas orders lately. I did a small print run of cards for my own use, like this- life on board nb Eve...

Christmas Eve

...I scanned it before I coloured it; was thinking I might do a colouring book, as they seem quite popular at the mo. If that is your thing, feel free to download the pic and have a go!