Monday, 20 November 2017

Animated Discussions: Wolf Children by Mamoru Hosoda

I am not so much of a wolf ... as I am a rabbit. But you know that I love my cartoons and that I love Japanese cartoons particularly.
Yesterday I watched "Wolf Children"Mamoru Hosoda's 2012 film release, very reminiscent of the Ghibli tradition of fantasy family tales for all ages.

Its story is about student Hana who falls in love with a mysterious young man she sees at her college lectures. But his dark secret is that he is a werewolf, a race long thought to have died out in Japan. Their love affair continues and he and Hana go on to have two young children: a girl, Yuki (Snow), and a boy, Ame (Rain). Fate forces Hana to lose her lover and soon the intrusions of modern urban life prove too much for Hana and her tiny human-wolf children. Hana moves to a rural community and the film follows the family as the children grow towards adulthood. How can Hana raise them as a human on her own? And how will they live? As wolves or humans?

I enjoyed the film very much but somehow it missed something that I find in the Ghibli classics. It's not so much the visuals, I think, as in the story-telling. Ghibli or rather Miyazaki's characters can be subtly drawn in terms of ambiguity or gender "type". In Hosoda's film it seems that boys are expected to be "tough" wolves and girls to be more human "tender" and perhaps woe betide if they do not conform that easily. Mmmnn! (She do say stroking her old-lady chin thoughtfully.) But it's a great story which involved me and The Old Man easily on a wintry evening.

And I wouldn't mind getting hold of a copy of the the next Hosoda: "The Boy And The Beast".

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Kneehigh Theatre's "The Tin Drum"

At last! Another night out  and a chance to see one of my favourite "local" theatre companies.

Kneehigh Theatre are touring their production of "The Tin Drum" (based on the Gunther Grass novel) and are bringing it to the Hall for Cornwall: November 21st-25th. Written by Carl Grose with music by Charles Hazlewood and directed by Mike Shepherd - they describe it as "a folktale for troubled times: one political, profane and profound" ... and an "extraordinary story of love, war and fizz powder".

Well that sounds like my cup of tea, don't it. So... tickets booked and seeing it soon.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Mrs D Finishes Inktober

So Mrs D has worn her fingers to the bone in fulfilling her Inktober challenge of a themed drawing a day for each day of October. She is covered in ink and her room is full of screwed up paper.

She tells me that she enjoyed it very much and has come to understand her drawing a bit better: don't work on it too hard... she do say ... because all of the life drains out of it; working from photos is fine providing she doesn't slip into previous pitfall - and she do love her fountain pen (Lamy Safari with fine nib).

She is pleased as punch and quite unbearable about having mastered (well ... not quite) posting her drawings on to her blog via her new and unfamiliar smart phone. (Yawn, yawn.)

You can see all 31 drawings over at Syb&Me. Go and find them and give an old lady some pleasure in her declining years.

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Short Trip - Alexander Perrin

Well me and The Old Man are off on yet another short trip.

So let me point you to Australian technical artist Alexander Perrin's  interactive illustration "Short Trip".

There you can while away your time, idly traveling a graphite, cat-populated train journey via your keyboard's arrows and spacer key. With its peaceful soundtrack I find the journey reminiscent of Japanese animator Hayao Miyazaki. Or perhaps that's just me because I am a little obsessed with Miyazaki.

Warning: not an experience for gamers perhaps.

With thanks to Brian D Butler's blog "Travel Between The Pages".

Monday, 2 October 2017

Inktober Postscript

Well what do you know! Mrs D has decided to do this challenge of an ink drawing a day and is posting the inky results over on Syb & Me.

Go see 'em there...

I'm off on holiday again soon anyway.

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Inktober 2017

Thinking about doing this. (Having found out about it on WordPress.)
But "think" must be "do".

The Inktober challenge is to make an ink drawing each day of October, posting each one (wherever) with the hashtag Inktober.

You'll find details of Inktober over at Jake Parker's Inktober page ... including its official prompt list of kick-start themes for a drawing.

Today's prompt is "SWIFT" - which I am not - as you can see.
Tomorrow's (Oct 2nd) is "DIVIDED" which I frequently am.

Now let me reach for that pen and paper ... Did he say "Swift"?

Friday, 15 September 2017

Back From Holiday

It was an unduly stressful holiday. Not far... just to Dorset. But we do not travel much and are, it do appear, unduly stuck in our ways. This means that a thousand things have to be taken with us in order to maintain routine. For we is aging and apparently do value both our routine and things familiar.

The short of it is - we haven't screamed at each other so much for ever such a long time. Where to go and what to do and which exit to take at the roundabout. Self-catering brings its emotional and digestive costs also. I have never cooked on an Aga before. Slops and toast do seem to be the end result of my attempts ... and baked potatoes. With bad sleep and bad choices of lunch destinations, I have never been so exhausted by a holiday before.

The upshot is ... that both The Old Man and Moi are appalled at the psychological rigidity what do accompany our stiff legs and backs. There is only one thing to do.

Go on holiday again.
And so we shall.
Quite soon.

Electric Palace in Bridport

PS. Things to enjoy in Dorset in September: dragonflies and swallows, terrific coastal scenery, fossicking for fossils and - Bridport with great food at the Soulshine Cafe and for lovers of jazz, rock and collecting vinyl Clocktower Music.

Friday, 18 August 2017

Holidays - Things To Do

It's me again. The Doll. The Old Man and me have decided to get away from it all. Or some of it at least. Not very far. To Dorset it looks like.

We do not travel much. We do not holiday much. When you are a gold-plated pensioner, every day is a holiday. N'est-ce pas? So I am making lists of things not to forget. Because when you are a pensioner one of the things you do best - is to forget.
And we have been shopping. For the things you need on holidays. Sandals for a start. There are bound to be beaches of loveliness in Dorset. I do know there are.
I have already bought one pair of sandals which, after a few hours of pain are to be returned to the shop. Today I bought another pair. This time ... so far so good. The Old Man is inspired to do likewise and buys a very complicated pair of Northwest Territory beach things covered in Velcro straps ... every which way. In fact these are so intricate that the shop assistant is also not too sure which webbed opening to use for foot insertion. But a solution was found and we have returned from shopping and are wiggling our respective toes.

But now I do wonder if I shall be spending silent, wet, holiday afternoons watching the rain dribble down the panes of glass. Silent that is except for the monotonous ripping sounds of The Old Man adjusting and re-adjusting the Velcro webbing on his sandals.