Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Dying roses

I went to a place called Lady Dixon park in Belfast to see their rose gardens. The roses all looked like they were on their way out and quite a few were actually infected or rotting, but I really quite like the patterns on the sick flowers. I'm a sucker for anything slightly decrepit.

This conjoined twin rose is a mutant flower but somehow romantic because it has two hearts. The one below it is infected but I think the spots are pretty.

I'm not really much of a fan of roses though, I go for something more exotic. (Just in case you were thinking of sending me a bouquet).

DIY Recycled party decorations

Here's a variation on the tissue paper pompoms I've made in the past. They're made out of old newspapers so are considerably cheaper and better for the environment. Win!

I'll be demonstrating how to make these and other recycled paper party decorations at the Crescent Arts Centre in Belfast on the 23rd September at the official launch of the amazing sculpture installation that weaves its way through the building.

Monday, 15 August 2011

Today's finds

Here's what the cat dragged home today....
A beautiful (if unironed) table cloth/shawl, five glasses with foxes hand-painted on them and most excitingly of all, a terranium. I've always wanted a terranium.

£5.50 well spent I think. Here's what I might do with the terranium:

Adventures on planet Earth: Rome

I was just looking through some old photos and found these ones from a holiday a few years back to Rome with my parents and sister Helen. I'm critically in need of some more adventures on planet Earth right now.

Below, my parents in the Pantheon which dates from around 126AD and whose dome is still the largest unreinforced conrete dome in the world, almost 2000 years later.

St Peter's Square in the Vatican City. Below, a crazy statue of the ancient fertility Goddess Cybele in the Vatican museums, Michelangelo's famous Sistene Chapel ceiling which you're really not meant to take photos of, and the domes of the basilica.

The Gorgeous gothic facade of the 14th Century Orvieto Duomo in Umbria. And below, a detail from the side chapel of the Madonna di San Brizio which has some quite frightening frescoes depicting the Apocalypse and the Last Judgement.

Always nice to end a blog post with a bit of fire and brimstone eh?

Monday, 8 August 2011

The Giant's Ring

A rare afternoon off together resulted in Danny and I driving out to the Giant's Ring - large ancient earthworks just a few minutes drive outside Belfast. It is roughly 200m across and a beautiful example of a 'henge' monument built around 2700BC during the neolithic period.

There were once three rings of tall wooden posts within the earthworks (lines just visible in the spliced photo I think) and the site was most likely used for ceremonial meetings back in the day.  Nowadays I think it is looked after by the council but it keeps quite a low profile and is mostly frequented by local dog-walkers rather than tourists. Fields of gold surround the Giant's Ring and general loveliness abounds.

Despite years of ploughing and horseriding competitions over the last few centuries, this dolmen survives in the centre of the enclosure. Just after we arrived a female harpist arrived for a photo shoot for her album cover in front of these old rocks.

To finish: a picture of a rather large mushroom.