Saturday, August 30, 2008

just playing with wordle

must be bored wordle is a bit of fun, this is my information / CV?

Friday, August 29, 2008

re-learning to speak french >>

I have probably been to france every year (sometimes more than once) since I was about 10 or 11 years old. some years ago now I actually lived and worked in france. I did have a reasonable ability to speak french while working there as I didn't really have the option (rightly so) to speak english.

when visiting as I have done for the last 6 years with a group of students, or on family breaks it is OK to get by as the people we tend to meet are usually speak english. so laziness often prevails, but I have made a decision I want to be able to speak french properly so apart from just watching french films I am making a conscious effort and have even registered on a language course whether I will have the time to complete it is down to me.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

slinkachu >> street art

hardly new as far as exposure but I have spent some time looking at the photos and work of slinkachu (street artist). and I can't help but like the work and ideas for so many reasons. it is the kind of stuff that can easily be over explained and justified but I simply like it. for more visit slinkachu or more pictures and stuff in the guardian.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

napo river >>

if you have read this blog in the last weeks you will know that my wife carol and youngest son ben have been in ecuador, south america in the last month. the reason for the visit was to be at carol's brothers wedding. having had a wonderful trip they are now back home in cornwall,
they managed a jungle trek staying for a few days in the rain forrest within the amazon basin. carol took many pictures this is just one of sunset on the napo river. while away carol took around 1000 photos some of which are fantastic so be sure a few more will find there way here. as will a good look at a genuine montecristi (panama) hat she got me while in manabi province.

Friday, August 22, 2008

surfing as design inspiration >> second in an occasional series >> hang ten

as the title suggests this the second post in an occasional series pick out things that I have noticed on my design journey I have made. I regularly refer to and learn from surfing branding and design . even working as a designer for surf companies as well. today I am having a look at the hang ten brand (originally set up in california in the early 1960's it soon became one of the major players in the surf industry). 

hang ten (named after the longboard surfing manoeuvre of hanging ten toes over the nose of the board while ridding) has always had a special place in my mind. when I first started surfing in the late 60' s early 70's their shorts were the ones to have, not just because of the advertising hype but they were really good quality. 

almost a victim of its own success it started to licence its brand to any thing and every thing and in so doing diluted the brand so much so its original customers left it to flounder amongst the strength of the Australian based brands of billabong, rip curl, and quiksilver
they licenced prints for all sorts of things including bed linen and even operating theatre scrubs as below, I don't really like the pastel shades (glad dr ciapparelli wasn't wearing one last week)
until very recently the brand was in trouble loosing its place amongst the brand leaders in the major markets of the usa, australia and europe. though managing to keep a firm foot hold in asia, especially japan. it just so happens that I am wearing a pair of 'new' hang ten board shorts today see logo below.

to end this very brief design history of the hang ten brand it is sort of good new as the brand it the process of becoming part of the now large quiksilver operation which should guarantee that hang ten will be set to continue and re-appear and hopefully not go down the road of more bad licensing decisions. below the redesigned logo for 2008

Thursday, August 21, 2008

this is where I wasn't >> today

I spoke to carol and ben last night they are still in ecuador and seem to be having a good time. they were at the coast at montanita a very famous surfing beach on the pacific. I searched a bit on you tube to find a clip of surf there and found this. the waves weren't this big for them but I think they managed to have some fun. along with alan and the newly-weds.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

august day >> it's dull but positive

today has been another day of trying to get things done. having achieved a bit I found myself waiting by the river near home. I was driving luca around in his preparation for his part in the hidden art exhibition (he is off to godolphin house in the morning). as usual while I wait anywhere I always try to find things that interest me. while waiting looking at the river I started thinking about the photo post cards that I first saw in the 1960's as below (I was just a child then). where often the colours were slightly too bright and the layers were sometimes out of registration. I took this photo (above) as the dull light was making any bright colours more prominent. it is hardly a great advert for a summer (august) day in cornwall, but I was pleased with the way its dullness made it attractive.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

hidden art at godolphin house

I have to declare an interest in my plugging for this years hidden art exhibition at godolphin house, cornwall (Saturday 23 - monday 25 august) as my eldest son luca is involved both as a curator and an exhibitor. as I write he is still thinking and working on his piece to be installed as part of 'the courtyard' section, (see hidden art curated).

"This year guest curators from a range of backgrounds have been invited to collaborate with Hidden Art Cornwall on the project. Each curator has selected a room or exterior space at Godolphin and developed their own brief for the project, inspired by the setting of Godolphin House". 
(quoted from the hidden art website)

Monday, August 18, 2008

jimmy & gabys wedding >> ecuador

I had to write a post about jimmy and gaby's wedding in ecuador this past weekend. carol and ben where there. unfortunately I wasn't able to go. but I send all my best wishes from here to them.

Friday, August 15, 2008

ecuador >>

I was pleased to get a call from carol today. (my youngest son) ben and carol travelled to banos, today after a few days in quito and a trip to the ecuadorian jungle. they seem excited and happy to going to jimmy and gaby's wedding tomorrow (saturday). even though I will be here in cornwall I sent my best wishes to the happy couple.
image: courtesy google earth

Thursday, August 14, 2008

bow wow wow >> c30/c60/c90

I am not sure what got me thinking about bow wow wow today, but it is an era I remember well. for short time in the early 80's I worked on the very fringe of the mclaren machine. perhaps more interesting is the then prominence of the cassette tape and the fact that is was damaging record sales! (ipods and downloading was not even on the horizon in those days).

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

another long day >> pretty much just this view

I know I am making a fuss about a dental procedure I had yesterday which in the scheme of things was pretty small and routine but I have spent the day today feeling swollen and absolutely rubbish. I had some surf writing to finish for tomorrows deadline which I did at the same time as watching the beijing olympics. so the only real view I had all day was the one below sitting at home with my mac balanced on the arm of the sofa. I am hoping for a good nights sleep tonight if the painkillers last.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

it has been a long day (at the dentist/endodontist)

I spent the afternoon having some surgery on my mouth (an apicoectomy) so I am not feeling that talkative, well type-ative. though I have to say that dr ciapparelli (the endodontist) was a nice man and it has only started to really hurt in the last few hours (after the procedure). have been told to take it a bit easy for a day or so. was going to post some pictures but that seemed to self serving, never mind gross. so it will be extra painkillers for me then.

Monday, August 11, 2008


I hadn't really intended to post today but I got back home cornwall from sussex (& brighton) today and checked through some of the pictures I had taken whilst fleeting from cornwall to the midlands (fri) birmingham airport down to west sussex (sat) for lunch, then spent a day in brighton (sun). brighton is a great place a place I have spent lots of time in the past, my younger sister lives just outside brighton the rottingdean side. was in her garden yesterday afternoon when I took this picture on my mobile. as you can see it is a summer scene without the summer if that makes sense. between showers and a strong wind her son was playing in their garden I just thought this little picture. summed up the summer well this (august) weekend just passed, so well.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

off for a few days

I am off to birmingham airport on friday morning taking carol and ben to catch a plane to amsterdam then their connection on to ecuador for their exciting adventure in to the jungle as well as the reason for the trip jimmy & gaby's wedding. sorry I can't make it to the wedding with them but hope you all have a great time over there. I will hopefully be able to add some ecuadorian stuff about it here sometime soon.

once they are safely off, its down to sussex for a couple of days seeing family before returning home to cornwall so a fair bit of driving for me in the next days. I should (all being well) be back updating sometime next week. 

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

another day >> more surfing stuff

I really spoke too soon as regard the rip curl boardmasters this week. I haven't driven over to watch from the beach & now feel guilty abut making any bad comments about it here or to others. I have been watching it pretty much all day today online

have to say that lee barlett (pictured above) did & is doing a fantastic job this week. talking for more than 10 hours today (commentating on the surfing through the day). it was like listening to test match special as a lot of on the time was spent talking around the facts, interesting as well as funny. I was pleased to hear dave reed (contest director, pictured below) explaining just how important the contest judges are. as a surf judge I do the (british and open) kneeboard contests as well as the the cornish schools and some of the lesser qualifying events, it is always good to know that people realise how important the judges are. any way it was a great days surfing today where ever you were watching it from. hope the rest of the week is good too.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

a rainy day in south east cornwall

well what ever I said yesterday about the rip curl board-masters championships in newquay I found my self watching a lot of it on the internet today. it was surprisingly addictive I must have watched three or four heats, even checked back tonight and watched some more stuff on tv mpora if you are interested in competition surfing it is well worth a look. the rest of the day was spent driving around south east cornwall taking 10 year old ben to an archery lesson (real arrows!) as well as changing his pocket money (at the post office) for some $'s to spend on his upcoming trip to ecuador with carol, for uncle jimmy's wedding. 

Monday, August 04, 2008

rip curl boardmasters 08 >>

I am normally excited around this time of year I am either on the way on foreign surf trip (as last year) or at minimum on my way over to the board-masters in newquay. as a surfer and a writer about surfing I usually drive over (it is quite close to where I live). but I am not planning to go over this time well not unless the surf picks up a huge amount. strange really but I am beginning to feel that its a bit like the two weeks of wimbledon you know when every one in the uk plays tennis for two weeks. only to forget about it three weeks later. perhaps I am a miserable old git but surfing is a year round thing and much as it is very important to cornish surfing and the local surfing industry. it is more than ever full of people who are there to be seen rather than to actually watching the surfing. but who am I to criticise I will probably go later in the week, perhaps I am just wishing that I had been asked to judge some of the heats then I would be over there like a shot. all that said if you are over at fistral hope you enjoy it. 

Friday, August 01, 2008

side tracked

I have got completely side tracked tonight as my wife's laptop (windows vista) decided to not recognise its cd-dvd drive! all she was trying to do was install a web cam! on well I might be some time! 
update: at about 2am BST (saturday) morning it is effectively sorted. I have to say that working with a windows XP based networked machines; and a lot of microsoft software in my day job. as well of course as using mac systems through choice. 'vista' as an operating system seems more than a little bit annoying.