Friday, 4 July 2008

The John Keats Show

After wandering around lovely Liscard for the beginning of the afternoon, I found my way into WH Smith and purchased another Skecthbook...I seem to have more sketchbooks than i know what to do with at the minute, oh well it's not like I won't use them. I thought i needed a bigger sketchbook for getting more 'finished' ideas down. I felt like the books I've been using are a little on the small side for finished things. anyways, blah blah blah, I spent the rest of the afternoon sitting on my Dad's veranda in the sun doodling away, got a few bits and bobs down and found myself enjoying what I was drawing properly for the first time in a while. I also discovered that the first page in all of my sketchbooks seems to be the worst one. not that it really matters to much as it is just a "sketch" book after all but maybe from now on I'll start from the end of the book and work backwards...just a thought. 

One of the things I drew this afternoon, think it needs a little more development but I do like it.

I started to pack my stuff for the Morocco trip but i got sidetracked here again, but I won't be able to blog again for about 3 weeks so I suppose I should make the most of it. Tomorrow me and Dad are off to Chester to pick up the last few things we need for the trip and to meet my sister for lunch.

This evenings song? erm..."Cool and Unusual Punishment" by NoFX

Until tomorrow, fare thee well.

J.A. Birch

We regret to inform you that there are no ghosts...only cardboard cutouts of Ted Danson.

Good day. Three days left until we set off for Morocco, this year our trip to Morocco will be a bit more "holiday" oriented with us supposedly working on the electrics in a small centre in Midelt for about a week and then having over a week to travel through Marrakech, Meknes, Fes and the Atlas Mountains by whatever means we can find. I should imagine I'll have plenty of stories and photographs to show when we return on the 23rd of July.

I've still been struggling to get any of the photos from the hat party so this collection put together using Photo Booth and Photoshop will have to suffice.

A selection of hats of the hat party...(left to right) 
1. Indiana Jones hat.
2. Jack's Russian hat (not a very summery option).
3. Moroccan Shepherd's wintertime hat.
4. Unknown.
5. The Illustrious and 100% official Moroccan Fez.
6. Bah Humbug hat (origin unknown)
7. My Cycle Helmet
8. MG cap.
9. El Gringo hat.
10. Lou's Princess hat.
11. Jamaican Rasta hat.
12. Australian hat (origin unknown)
13. Mike's Scottish hat (complete with "Flower of Scotland" tune)
14. Another Scottish hat (origin unknown)
15. Unknown Wicker hat.
16. Fluffy Beret (origin unknown)

So I'm fairly sure that it's rather obvious to the reader that I have a lot of time on my hands at the moment, what with being able to sit around making photo montages of me wearing numerous hats and all. So when I get bored I find myself drawn towards watching rubbish on youtube and I figured it was probably about time that I helped to dispel a few urban legends. Yeah you guessed it, there are actually no ghosts...just cardboard cutouts of Ted Danson so there's no need to worry anymore, now you can sleep soundly huh? Sorry to disappoint all of the believers out there but there's no ghost in the film "3 Men and a Baby" just a cutout of the Ted-meister and don't even get me started on the idea of a munch-kin hanging himself in "The Wizard of Oz", come on now people, this is just getting silly.

There, are you happy now? No ghosts, okay?

Okay I've got things that I should really be sorting out for the Morocco trip on Sunday, so I shall stop procrastinating and be on my way. No doubt I'll be on again later spouting more rubbish.

This Morning's Song -"The Invisible Garden" by Bright Eyes.

J.A. Birch

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

A Collage of Senselessness.

"and if it seems like an accident, you weren't looking hard enough"

Hello to one and all, so I decided that the "news" section on my website wasn't particularly effective for updating regularly and so on, basically I couldn't be bothered going in and out of the file uploader to post some fairly banal news. I also enjoy Jen's Blog quite a bit and so wanted to start one of my own.

Today is Thursday as I'm sure you all know and it's July, I am aware that I'm stating the bleeding obvious but I'm just sorting my head out as I type. So to begin, June was an extremely eventful month, to list a few things that have happened, there was graduation, my birthday, a trip to london for D&AD Newblood, an extremely enjoyable "Hat Party" and moving out of my flat in Dundee. 

My Birthday
This year my birthday fell on an awkward day of the week - the day before my graduation and so as a result my birthday got spread out over most of the month of June which I can hardly complain about too much I suppose. There's been lots of enjoyable days and nights of drinking and merriment with friends and family over the past month, probably a few too many to account for here (also the fact that I can't remember many of them), the picture above is from the card my sister got me, awesome (I got lots of swell cards and even a handmade badge but this card was the only one I had to hand at this moment in time). Then from the birthday month came the 2nd annual hat party...

Hat Party
Let's just say as a family the Birch's know how to party. Last year whilst travelling in Morocco me and my Dad decided a "Hat Party" would be a great idea for my birthday party, so much more simple than fancy dress as there's much less dressing up involved and let's be honest, who can resist wearing a fine hat? Last years party went down a storm, it consisted mostly of my close companions but we had a heck of a time. This year we decided that the Hat Party would become an annual occurrence and that the event would be a three pronged celebration - My birthday, my Dad's birthday (as we are in Morocco on his actual birthday) and my graduation. It was a swell party. We worked out the day after (whilst hungover and all) that around 64 people came over...that's a lot of hat's. Oh and we had a mass sing-a-long, we sang such numbers as "The Leaving of Liverpool", "Dirty Old Town", "Don't Look Back in Anger" and "Valerie", I'd like to say we pulled it off but to be honest i was rather inebriated and all of my concentration went on trying to remember what chords I should be playing on the Banjo so I would hate to lie to the reader.

This was the only photo i could get my hands on to illustrate the hat party...

Graduation took place on the 19th of June (the day after one's birthday), got up early to greet Dad into Dundee and have breakfast with him. After getting all dressed up had to go and get "Robed" up and photographed etc. Felt quite rough for most of the day, think that the build up to the whole thing made me rather nervous and I couldn't stop thinking about falling over on stage, luckily I didn't though. Vivienne Westwood also graduated at the ceremony as us, she only got an honorary degree mind, I'd say I was awestruck by her presence only i found her a bit scary looking if I'm totally honest.

London (D&AD Trip)
Journeyed down to London on the 22nd of June with people from University on the overnight Megabus which I can hardly say I enjoyed. However had such a fab time while we were there that it kind of nullified the ridiculous amounts of time that we spent on the bus not sleeping. D&AD consisted of putting up work for people to look at, looking at other people's work and then swanning around London when we'd finished doing that. All in all, much fun was had by all, at least I think so.

Whilst in London our tutor Mick pointed us in the direction of an awesome comic book shop in Tottenham called "GOSH!" where I managed to get my hands on  two books by my favourite comic book artist/author Jeffrey Brown, two books I'd been intending to get for a while and not been able to get my hands on. They complete my Jeffrey Brown collection quite nicely and I can easily say I have thouroughy enjoyed reading them both!

A small example of how swell Jeffrey Brown really is.

After London Jen and I travelled ourselves back to Wallasey to spend a few days together before I head off to Morocco on Sunday. Jen has gone home now though and I won't get to see her until August (sadface), however we did have a swell few days, being lazy, drinking, tea, partying, wearing hats, eating cake, playing Nintendo, watching films, eating pasta, walking on the beach, going to Liverpool, going to Museums, going to Manchester and exploring rock pools. Fun times (:

Anyway, I should wrap this up now, just wanted to fill out what happened for the whole of June in one go, wanted to write it down somewhere, it has been a highly enjoyably month and July promises much of the same! 

Sincerely, Faithfully, Lovingly and whatever else,

J.A. Birch