Wednesday, October 31, 2012

I Finally Sold My Old Bike

Yellow bike, Cambridge. Photograph by Tim Irving
A nice Bike in Cambridge
On Sunday I removed the front wheel from my bike, put the bike in the car and drove to the outskirts of Cambridge. There I removed the bike from the car, replaced the front wheel and rode my bike for the last time. I rode to the train station to meet a man who had travelled from London, by train to buy my bike.

I owned the bike for over twenty years but rarely (never), rode it. It moved houses when I moved, moved countries too. That bike has been all over Europe, but never ridden. It's gone now to a new home, to be ridden around London by a man who said he'd ride it with pride. Strangely I miss it.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Re-Incarnated Organist

Victorian Church Organ - Photograph by Tim Irving

Victorian Church Organ - Photograph by Tim Irving
I'd like to thank the vicar and organist for making me smile yesterday.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Minnie Riperton

I'm listening to the 1970 Minnie Riperton album 'Come into my Garden'. I'm grateful I discovered this album, it's fresh and joyful. Here's a sample for you, 'Les Fleurs'.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Trampoline Bridge over the Seine

Un nouveau pont sur la Seine! Je pense qu'il est merveilleux. (Today's blog has been completed with the help of "Learn French in your sleep"), Ooh la la. 

This is one of the proposals for a new bridge across the Seine in response to an ideas competition. It's constructed using three inflatable PVC donuts with trampoline material stretched in the centre.

Paris has 37 bridges spanning the Seine, a new bridge isn't essential to get traffic or pedestrians moving, however this bridge is just up my alley and I give my full backing.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Ski Photos in The USA

Ski Lift Photograph by Tim Irving
It's been a good month! I've sold 17 large (30" X 30" inch), Ski Lift photographs, and another 17 large Alpine photographs. They've been bought by a dealer in the US who is framing them as I write this. The dealer is a woman of few words and the deal was conducted via a few short emails. I don't know where the photographs will end up all I know is that the photos will be offered to architects and designers.

As a working photographer who has to eat I really don't mind where the photos hang. But of course it would be nice to know where they end up, then I can choose whether to use the information for blatant self promotion, or not. So if you see the Ski Lift photo on your travels in the US or Canada please let me know.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Art Materials

Paint box - Photograph by Tim Irving
I had the pleasure of browsing around a really good art shop in a part of London I rarely visit. After enjoying the smell of linseed oil for an hour I bought a paint brush and a putty rubber that I've been meaning to get for months.

I saw a very useful sketch book and now I'm kicking myself that I didn't pick one up. They were piled up near the entrance with a reduced sign above them. They were in various sizes from A3 to pocket size, spiral bound with plain hard board covers containing four types of paper, ten sheets of each type. Smooth cartridge, smooth watercolor, rough watercolor and oil canvas textured paper, brilliant!

The Art of the Tea Room

Cragg Sisiters, Aldburgh - Photograph by Tim Irving
Cragg Sisters tea room, Aldburgh Suffolk. Highly recommended for it's individual style and the quality of food, drink and service. Now it's not difficult to make a pot of tea and toast a crumpet, the Cragg Sisters have been doing it well since 1949, I can even do it myself. So why are there so few good tea rooms and cafe's?

Yesterday I had tea in a new tea room that opened close to my home in Clare, Suffolk, here's a mental list I made of the experience:

The place is empty
Too many tables and chairs, it feels cramped
Radio playing too loud
Waiter asks for order as soon as I sit down and before I look at the menu
Served in silence (except for the sound of the radio) and without a smile
Industrial white cups and saucers (made in China)
Small steel tea pot that pours tea on the table, in saucer and finally in the cup
Weak, cheap tea
Steel milk jug
Homemade raspberry sponge cake that is not homemade
Portion of cake too large
Cake is dry, filling tastes synthetic
It's cold in this tea room
My chair is uncomfortable
The bill: One pot of tea and one slice of cake £4.50 ($7.20)

In short my experience in Clare was negative and  miserable. If someone can mess up serving tea and cake should that person be doing something else? A good tea room is a wonderful place where the atmosphere is warm and you leave with a smile on your face. As I've said it's not difficult.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Barker English Brogues - My New Shoes

Barker Brogue Shoes - Photgraph by Tim Irving

Barker Brogue Shoes - Photgraph by Tim Irving

I've just bought new shoes, seduced by the sight of the purple leather linings. They really are the apples of my eye at this moment and I confess that I can't stop myself from picking them up, sniffing the leather and admiring the details. They're made by Barkers of Northamptonshire, England, boot makers since 1880.

Always self conscious in new shoes (Am I walking funny?), to get used to these I'm wearing them around the house for a couple of hours a day just to loosen them up, but already they feel comfortable. From previous experience of leather shoes I initially avoid long walks. In a couple of days I'll venture outside in them for a short walk with the dog, and if there are no problems I'll be skipping the streets of London next week.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Beautiful Photograph by Tom Lennon

Warwick Farm racecourse, Sydney, Australia. Photograph by Tom Lennon, 1 January 1934
Courtesy of Powerhouse Museum, Sydney, Australia.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

An Oil Sketch

oil sketch of Southwold lighthouse by Tim Irving
A small 5x5 inch sketch from yesterday.

The Lighthouse

It's been a busy week! I've just returned from Southwold, where I spent a couple of days sketching, painting and photographing the lighthouse from all viewpoints in the town. The lighthouse as you can see is very much part of the community and together with Adnams brewery, dominates this little seaside town.

The weather was kind and provided an excellent mix of lighting from flat to dramatic. Culinary delights included Norfolk pork pie and a pint Adnams bitter, and very good coarse pate with slices of white toast. I managed a thirty minute nap on the beach and produced thirty six photographs, twelve drawings and four oil sketches.

Tomorrow I head north to Liverpool and Wales, so I'll  I wish you all a happy and productive weekend, I'll be with you next week.

Me at the Adnams Brewery Southwold. Photograph by Tim Irving

Lighthouse,  Southwold Suffolk - Photograph by Tim Irving

Lighthouse,  Southwold Suffolk - Photograph by Tim Irving

Lighthouse,  Southwold Suffolk - Photograph by Tim Irving

Lighthouse,  Southwold Suffolk - Photograph by Tim Irving

Lighthouse,  Southwold Suffolk - Photograph by Tim Irving

The beach Southwold. Photograph by Tim Irving


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