Copycat (and copydog)

Those little chinese cats, the ones that slowly wave their paws in the air, are often to be seen in gift shops. But I never thought I’d see one of these pretend cats being copied by a real cat.

Dogs will copy, including copying their humans, like in this bit of video at the same Twitter feed, but I never knew that any cats were also this way inclined. I didn’t know that there were actual copycats.

I guess my surprise comes from me not having known any cats who were growing up in the company of other cats, and hence still at the stage of learning how to be a cat, by copying those other cats.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

Up on the roof

The view from on top of my block of flats is jot quite high enough to be really great, like, say, the view from the top of the Tate Modern Extension. Plus, there is the great lump that is Hide Tower, right outside my front window, which blocks off a huge chunk of London.

But if the light is playing games, things can get entertaining. While grubbing back in the archives looking for a shot, from my roof, of the now deceased New Scotland Yard building just off Victoria Street, I came across this shot, taken just under two years ago, looking from my roof along Chapter Street, towards Battersea Power Station:

Cranes, roof clutter, vapour trails. Lovely.

I find that I can best photo a sunset, not by photoing the sunset itself, but by photoing it with and behind buildings, and showing what it can do to buildings. In the right light, the most commonplace of buildings can be transformed into something far less commonplace.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

Another London logo (and a selfie)

I have spent my day fighting against infrastructure overload and now I am tired.

Here, instead of nothing, is a selfie that I took, on a train, exactly one year ago:

That reminds me: I could now use a haircut.

But I wasn’t really photoing myself there. What interested me was yet another of those London logos, in this case in aid of all this, with a random selection of Big Things, this one featuring the Gherkin, the Wheel, and St Paul’s. The Shard, oddly, didn’t make the cut.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

Elina Cerla

After a hard afternoon yesterday, exploring Churchill and his wartime government’s subterranean lair, I was, in the evening, in no mood to do much else. But Christian Michel had one of his 6/20 evenings (yes I know, on the 5th (there was a reason but I have forgotten it)), and I forced myself to attend, knowing that I would not regret this. And I didn’t.

The highlight of my evening was undoubtedly getting to talk with an artist and art teacher by the name of Elina Cerla. We spoke about how we were both fascinated by the difference between how two eyed people see things, and how one eyed cameras, or camera-like gadgets used by artists, see things. Summary: very differently. Also about how she is more concerned to help people solve the artistic problems they consider important, rather than to shape them all into her preferred sort of artist.

She gave me her card before we went our separate ways, so I’m guessing she will have no problem with me linking you to that website.

You could become one of Elina Cerla’s pupils by doing what this says:

Having already wandered about in the website, I was particularly struck by that naked figure when I came across it elsewhere on the website, so I was intrigued later to find that she chose it to illustrate her teaching advert. I think you will agree that this image inspires confidence that the time of pupils will not be wasted. This is someone with definite skills to impart.

I am presently listening to this YouTube interview. Refreshing absence of art-speak bullshit and political infantilism, of the sort commonly emitted by those who practice (or who are attempting) shock-art.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

War and peace

Today me and GD2’s Dad, who will return to Brittany tomorrow, visited the Churchill War Rooms and the attached Churchill Museum, underneath Whitehall. Very good, and a lot bigger and more elaborate than we were expecting. A lot of time, trouble and expense has been passed, taken and spent on this show, with its tiny and insignificant looking entrance in King Charles Street, just off the right hand side of St James’s Park.

I took a ton of photos, most of which came out pretty well.

I was also out this evening, so I’ve time to present only one photo now:

I was fascinated by the war, of course, but also by the numerous items of peaceful technology that were also also needed to fight that war, like telephones, fire extinguishers, standard lamps, electric fans, chairs, and the three pin power sockets they used then. And the cooker, above.

A lot of these devices looked very familiar to me, me having been born in 1947, and the Cabinet War Rooms having the sort of kit that regular people often only got a bit later.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog

Yet more photoers

Yes, I don’t think I’ll ever get totally tired to taking photos of photoers, like the ones below, all taken during a recent walk with my friend Tony (who is GodDaughter2’s Dad) along Victoria Street, past Westminster Abbey and Parliament, and then on over the River and past the Wheel.

Lots of woolly hats and gloves and furry clothes, and hair. I especially like how the hair of the lady in 2.2 is lit up green, and also a bit of red.

Click and enjoy:

Seven smartphones. Two old school cameras, like my one. Smartphones have totally swallowed the dedicated-but-little camera market, although you do still see them around.

Originally posted at Brian Micklethwait’s Old Blog