Monday, January 28, 2008


I used to make comics back in the 80's and 90's, mostly for mail art 'zines or projects. Seeing Joe's nice cartoon/drawings at ( see previous posted comments ) I tried to upload some of mine too but the computer kept crashing so I have given up and will add some to my blogs instead.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Norway Film

Hazel took all these film snippets and Ive just cobbled them together and added a soundtrack as the original seems to vanish for some reason I can't quite fathom!
In it you see a clip of the train journey ( not steam ) to Lillehammer passed the frozen Lake Mjosa then a candlelit Esther's house which isn't that gloomy and lots of laughing and giggling- more trains and then a mistake as Hazel attemts to snap Esther's lovely pizza she made on our arrival.

We can't quite imagine that we went now a week or so later - seems a bit like a dream. Back to reality. Hazel has been washing and ironing like mad to catch up with the back-log from our week away. Archie is back on Rune Scape. I have been catching up with a few blogs but not this one. Some new pages on Boot Sale Sounds. Have been to town a couple of times to check out the charity shops and market but no bargains to be found though everything seems so much cheaper after Norway.
Found a DVD about Hannah Hawkswell and her lonely life up in the Yorkshire Dales running a sheep farm on her own back in the 70's.She became quite a celebrity and her fortunes changed after that programme and she wrote book of her life and went to New York etc. Nice story.

It's been quite mild here - sort of grey and overcast today. Might go and feed the ducks as Archie has bought a whole white loaf from Aldi to fling at them.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Hazel Jones posing at the entrance to her exhibition at the Kustbanken gallery in Hamar, Norway. She only expected a small room and found she had three small rooms to fill and eventually by some clever arrangement and deviousness got a further room with a TV to play her DVD she had taken along! Not bad considering the work just took up part of a suitcase ( the 17 photos were sent ahead by air ).

Here's Hazel with a selection of her "found objects" used for inspiration - the icing nozzles, the string cutter, the padlocks and keys, the pipe cleaners etc. mostly all found in charity shops and flea markets and some sent by kind friends overseas.

Archie demonstrating a tin foil compactor I think?
Or it could be a pea polisher!Hazel with the box of "string too small for use" that was the main inspiration for latest sets of gadgets and metal objects for holding, storing, winding string. They all sounded very exotic translated into Norwegian for the leaflet and amused the gallery staff no end as they tried to figure out what words would be appropriate!

Monday, January 21, 2008


Just back from a nice week in Norway, helping Hazel put up her exhibition in the Kunstbanken Gallery in Hamar. We stayed with our good friends Esther and family nearby. It took longer to put up the exhibition than Hazel first thought but despite the setbacks were able to enjoy some days out in the beautiful Norwegian countryside. We had previously only experianced Norway's natural wonders in the summer and this was out first visit in the depths of Winter. Around Xmas it was apparently 15 below zero so we had taken many layers and stocked up with thermal underwear and appropriate gloves, scarves and other woolies but it turned out to be one of the mildest January's ever and raining! The rain froze so the pavements were quite trecherous! It's a wonder any of us didn't fall over during our stay but managed a few nifty dance steps!

Above is Hazel on one of our "days off" at the end of our stay up in the hills around Hamar where it was snowier and more like what we imagined it would all look like. We spent a lovely day sledging and careering down hills on various toboggony craft. Below Archie is building a snowball from part of a glacier!
Two days before we went to Lillehammer by train which was similar and very cold but crunchy underfoot. Went to the Art Gallery or Kultur Haus or whatever it was called but they were changing exhibitions so we got in free so see some amateurish daubs from the permenant collection. Hazel bought a nice folk art looking tapestry from the only charity shop in the area for her Mom. I looked through some old Norwegian records and tapes but none caught my eye and they were rather expensive.
Hazel also found some metal gadgets for her blog - some old xmas tree candle holders.

The exhibition looked great and Hazel was surprised to find she had four rooms to fill and not the one she expected! Somehow with devilish cunning and inter-active enginuity she managed to fill the space very well. Some more about that tomorrow. I have earache due to cabin pressure so better add more when I feel less jet- lagged and deaf!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

The Dancing Pea

A new animation by Archie hot off the press.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


The last few days have been a bit of a blurr. I can't remmeber much about them except that the weather has been very dull and grey, drizzly and depressing. Archie went off to Durham on a school trip overnight and stayed in a creaky house just after going on a "ghost tour" of the old town in a hailstorm. Trying to illicit anmore information is like trying to get blood out of a stone. One is confronted by Kevin the teenager. Due mainly to tiredness- staying up til 4 in the morning talking.
Hazel is back at college and all the drama and stress that involves. The stories she tells make your ears curl and I couldn't possibly tell them here which is a shame as they would liven up this dull blog quite well!

Went into town yesterday and tried to exchange Hazel's new ipod for another as this one seems to freeze up every five minutes. The Mr. Bean type character in Currys said it was easy to fix - juts go to the Apple website and download the relevant software - he made it seem so easy and we were idiots to be bothering him with this small matter.

Found some old silent movies on DVD and video in a charity shop. "Birth Of A Nation" by D.W. Griffiths and two features by Harold Lloyd "The Freshman" and "Safety Last".

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Fun & Games

The Timberwise chaps came today to rip out our mouldy skirting boards and squirt some gunk behind them and drill a few holes etc. which disrupted our quiet morning somewhat. Everything is covered in a fine layer of dust now and it took ages to put the book shelves back and try and remember where everything was. Typically ended up with a few books left over and no spaces! Now Archie is tidying his room and sorting out stuff for the charity shop to make way for all the xmas stuff.
crash bang!
There is a smell of plastic filler and sawn wood in the air. Hopefully now the damp will be banished from the corner behind the TV.. I painted the wall again to cover the mouldy mildew stains. Nice.
Above is a collage I made for a theme of "games" at Scrapiteria but too late I am. New theme of "Goddess" already stated it is. I seem to be turning into a Star Warts character I am.
Feel a bit in limbo in this period after New Years and before all the decorations and lights come down this weekend. Looking forward to everything being normal again.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

First Day Of New Year

Woken without a headache after several glasses of rum and coke which is amazing. All I remember from last night is the drizzle and looking out the front door to see copious explosions and rockets at midnight and Hazel in a conga line going down the street with some drunken neighbours. I quickly retreated to the safety of the living room and the last of Jools Hollands Hootenanny. Seasick Steve being the stand-out this year.

Hazel has gone into her workshop today to finish off a few things. Archie slept until the afternoon and is watching some animation. Uploaded some new tracks to Boot Sale Sounds using my new toy.

Looking back in rhyme to 2007 with the aid of my diary I see that-

January started similarly with rain.
Now the months come round again.
My resolution for a collage a day
Started well but faded away.
It was the Regal's last show
Our cinema closing was quite a blow
Extras at end of month for zombie flick
In the old Regal before it got sick.

February started badly
No Regal auction lots sadly.
Nasty flu' attack which lays me low
Hazel off to Berlin she goes
Now really feeling rough
Not sleeping well enough
Up and down like a yo-yo
Crying and then a big ho-ho!

March is very much the same
Someone has re-wired my brain!
Thankfully help is nearly here
Sleeping pills take away the fear
Writing lost and lots of lists
Nearly sent me round the twist
I tell the ducks on Shackerly Mere
The fisrt boot of the Spring is here!

O dear! I can't keep this up for much longer! I think I'll stop while I'm ahead. Other highlights included getting book printed at LULU which was a tortuous affair I'll not repeat in a hurry! Archie started piano lessons at Bruces down the road. I tried to learn but realised I was incapable of playing any kind of musical instrument- even the ukulele ties my fingers in knots! Going to see the film "Dead City" in Knutsford was good too- mainly because we were in it but if you blinked you missed us!

It's been quite an eventful year thinking about it but traumatic at times. Hoping for a less stressful 2008 for all of us!