Friday, 24 October 2008

Fear(s) of the Dark

Fear(s) of the Dark is a magical mixture of dark dreams, dark thoughts and dark places. It's a collection of six French animated films about a little girl's horrific dream, a man who finds shelter from the snow in an abandoned house, a young man's first girlfriend and others. The darkness theme twisted and bound the six separate stories together very well and they complimented each other, although they were made by six different animators.

The animation itself wasn't great as they were all computer animated which tends to look quite clumsy, but the graphic monotone design of all the films was beautiful and there were plenty of bits to make you jump or make your skin crawl. This is a world of weird creatures, strange shadows and depraved lunatics.

The film felt like a comic-book, from the visually arresting red and black title sequence, through a gritty, flickering pencilled world to stark black and white ink drawings.

This is a wonderfully chilling collection of films which will horrify you in a very delightful way.

UK Trailer

Wednesday, 15 October 2008

Blog Action Day for Poverty: Jewellery from Junk

Photo by WE Centers Uganda

I enjoy sewing and selling my creations on Etsy. I feel lucky to have Etsy as an option so that I can make back a little money to help pay for the all the money I spend on craft supplies. I don't rely on it though, I have a 'proper' job to pay the bills. But what about women in Uganda, who live in poverty and don't have access to Etsy, let alone employment that will give them a decent wage. This is where organisations like Bead For Life and Life in Africa have stepped in, to help those poor communities raise themselves out of poverty by making something out of next to nothing.

If you want to help (and treat yourself!), you can buy bracelets from Life in Africa, like the ones shown above, and other items made from their colourful handmade paper beads. Visit their site to learn more about this company.

Photo by Bead for Life

And there's more! Bead For Life have a lovely site with lots of beautiful photography like the one above and better still, more paper beads jewellery to buy, including packs of loose beads, in their shop.

I really liked the fish above which is a 'Peace Tile', made by a participant in The Global Peace Tiles project , which "is a fun way to involve people everywhere in arts-based learning and sharing. To date, more than 3,000 people - from 7 to 70 - in over a dozen countries have produced thousands of works of art that have been combined into vibrant murals. Produced in structured workshops, these tiles have been used in many ways - to respond to urgent issues like HIV/AIDS (advocacy), to explore aspects of community (self-expression), to learn more about a topic like children in conflict (education), to build connections among groups of people (exchange), and to work through trauma (therapy)". There is even a Flickr group where you can see lots of examples of Peace Tiles.

Ten Thousand Villages is a great site for buying fair trade crafts, especially things like the colourful ship kite and the recycled can ornament, above. This company works with communities in the poorest places around the world to help raise their standard of living by selling their handmade crafts. Why buy things from the high street when you can buy beautiful things from the comfort of your home, AND know that you're helping someone in need at the same time, even in a small way - it all counts.

So treat yourself and help someone in poverty at the same time!
Joey x

Etsy Treasury and a Haiku - Still and Quiet Yellow Trees

This is the Etsy treasury I made tonight. Click here to see it in person. And this is my haiku to go with the treasury:

I pass deathly still
golden yellow trees, sallow
leaves clinging to life.

Have you ever tried to write a haiku? If you don't know what it is, it's a poem which expresses a feeling or mood, usually about nature, and should have three lines. The first line should be 5 syllables, the second, 7 syllables and the third line, 5 syllables again.
Here's a quick guide: How To Write a Haiku

Joey x

Monday, 6 October 2008

Raspberry and Chocolate Etsy Treasury

Do you like this treasury? I love these colours together and I was lucky enough to find plenty of great items that go together pretty well. What do you think? Visit the treasury here to take a closer look!

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Sheffield Botanical Gardens in October

I went for a walk and photography outing in my favourite park, the Botanical Gardens this afternoon.

It was a lovely day after the heavy rain all last night and early this morning. There's nothing like a quiet walk and taking pictures when you feel bitter and twisted inside, like I did today. I'm sure you know the feeling, when you get out of bed on the wrong side and everything and everybody in the whole world is out to get you.

Anyway, I was happily snapping away, taking pictures of flowers and bees and squirrels, when the ground - yes, the ground - got me! I slipped on some very very soggy grass, sodden from last night's rain and went "a over t"!

I think it must have looked very comical at the time but I felt ridiculous, embarrassed and silly. My glasses flew off, I was covered in mud and worst of all, my camera went face down, and the lens is still full of grit and muck even though i've tried to get it all out.

My pride was bruised but nothing else. And I have these lovely pictures and a funny anecdote to tell, so it was a good day I think.

Have a great week, everyone!
Joey x


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