Wednesday, 31 March 2010

News, and a Quote

I am now a contributor to The Edinburgh Reporter, a blog that aims to fill in all the news gaps not covered anywhere else. If you've got any local news that you think deserves to be covered, let me know!

Teenagers in Conversation
You can't say chinky, that's racist. [pause] And anyway, he's no a chinky, he's South Korean.

Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Art Lesson

This graffiti is the effort of a n00b. By which I mean amateur.

Spray paint runs when you hold the can too close and spray too much on. What you should do is stand back a little, flick your wrist, and use little bursts of paint to build your tag gradually. Not that I condone this sort of behaviour in relation to public buildings or property, mind.

But anyway, now you know that dribbly bits = n00b. Go ahead, impress your friends. You don't have to credit me. Although obviously you should.

Monday, 29 March 2010

A Good Book

I just finished The Glass Books of the Dream Eaters by G.W.Dahlquist, and am now here on the internet to recommend it to you.

If you like Victorian-era fiction, steampunk, mystery, sci-fi, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (comic not film), or ripping reads in general, this is definitely worth a look.

The book follows the exploits of three outwardly disparate characters who are inadvertently drawn together by the diabolical actions of a pan-European gang of evil aristocrats, who have discovered a way to steal people's memories and put them into glass books. As you do.

There follows a barrage of intrigue, violence, scamming, paranoia, green ankle boots, and sexy pants. If it's made into a film (and if it isn't I will be surprised) then it's going to be a bit like the last Sherlock Holmes. But without the problem of having been done already, and with the added bonus of Monica Bellucci as a sexy - yet malevolent - Contessa. They'd better cast Monica Bellucci...

Arguably the book is overlong, but I didn't find that a problem because the story continually introduced new characters and presented little clues as to what was going on so that I always felt involved with the unfolding plot. The chapters were mega big, which was annoying to start with because I couldn't just read to the end of a chapter in ten-twenty minutes and then go do something else, I had to stop part way through and leave it hanging. However I just read that this is because the book was first published in sections, like a Victorian melodrama, which is quite a nice touch. And it did add to the feeling of being involved with the story.

Also there are lots of naughty times, which can be rather lewd, so don't buy it for your granny. Unless she's into that kind of thing.

Sunday, 28 March 2010


Why is the architect of this tag sorry? Who are they apologising to?

Well. The squiggly bit on the M is where the person was caught red-handed and ran away. His name is Reese and he upset his mum by eating all of her special biscuits. He will come back and add the 'um' some other time. Reese is tenacious like that.

Saturday, 27 March 2010

Haaa Ha Ha

This is another hilarious Newington graffiti. What will they think of next?!

Friday, 26 March 2010

Well, Maybe Just One More...

When you choose to go drinking till close in an establishment where this is one of the best offers, you have only yourself to blame for how you will feel when you arrive at work at 8.45 the following morning.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Links and Comma Splicing

I was going to go to Edinburgh Twestival today, but a thing happened and now I'm not. But maybe you should. What it is, right, is an event being held in Ghillie Dhu that has been organised and publicised on Twitter, all in the name of charidee. Or charity, for those who prefer correct spellings.

For £8 a ticket (or a little bit more on the door, not sure how much) you get several bands (including Idlewild, who are DJing, Shooting Stansfield, who played with DanDanDan the other month, and Mitchell Museum who are playing with Kid Canaveral next month at a gig organised by Peekno and Ayetunes); fabulous raffle prizes, and lots of cake. All of the money goes to Concern to help very worthy charities in places like Haiti.

In other news, the Guardian Edinburgh Beatblog, of which regular readers have seen me write, is now live here. I will be following with interest.

Tuesday, 23 March 2010


It was my last class at ECA tonight. I float mounted the rat king for the exhibition. That isn't rude. It means I stuck a bit of foam to a bit of card, then put a print of the rat king on the top so it's kind of floating. Gives it depth, apparently.

I used PH neutral tape. But only cuz I have the file saved and can print it out again, k? Don't be using it to float mount your original Kandinskys.

Monday, 22 March 2010

Juxtaposed Wit U

A nice thing about Edinburgh is the cobbled together look of it. You're forever finding lots of small businesses dotted about in weird and unexpected spaces.

If I were a prude, this could be one of the more jarring juxtapositions; Organic Pleasures ("the world's first eco-erotic boutique for women and their partners [which sells] non-toxic pleasure accessories, organic body care and eco-luxe lingerie") is above a nursery. Of the type where little children are looked after, as opposed to one for plants.

As it is, I am not particularly prudish, and I sort of like the dissonance of these two disparate places being on top of one another. But not in a pretentious way, as I like to keep things real. Like Westwood, yo.

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Spring Has Sprung

The Botanic Gardens are home to a war between the squirrels and the pigeons, as the magpies look on in disinterest. But in spite of the carnage it is also nice to note definite signs of spring.

These here are some flowers. There was a MASSIVE bumble bee kicking around the pink and white ones. It was pretty much the size of your face. But sadly my attempts to get a photo were thwarted by its decision to hide inside them, getting its pollen on. Such is the bumbly wont.

There were also lots and lots of frogs. Nature-tastic.

Friday, 19 March 2010


If ever you run out of dolls heads, you can buy more in a variety of sizes at Unicorn Antiques.

Hope that's put your mind at ease.

Thursday, 18 March 2010


I've been meaning to find out about this for a couple of weeks now...

- It's a painting in the window of the Axolotl Gallery on Dundas Street which I go past on the bus every time the 8 doesn't turn up.
- It's by a Scottish artist called Kirsty Whiten.
- It's pretty weird.
- But a snip at £3200.

Reflection-less view here.

Another Thread

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

A Tale

I meant for March to be Flash Fiction month, in the same way as February was supposed to be Sketch a Day - that is, I would write a story of no more than 250 words every day.

Then the lurgy happened (today is officially the last day of week three, and so far no respite). This put paid to my grandiose plan, as they say on the street.

However, today at my evening class my tutor showed us a very simple technique with text, and I thought (in italics, as one does), hm, perhaps I could combine this with the flash fiction idea. Basically, you use pen tool to make anchor points from which you devise a squiggly line - never let it be said I don't pay attention to the technical terminology - and you can set the text to follow it. Therefore, the plan is to fit a teeny story onto a different length of squiggly line every day (or thereabouts).

Beats expectorating.

Sunday, 14 March 2010


I am fed up of being ill. Today I coughed so much I somehow triggered my gag reflex and coughed up half a glass of water along with the expected phlegms. In a restaurant. A nice one.

In other news, if like me you often get asked to make promotional literature in a hurry, with no graphics software in sight, you can use pixlr. It's a basic photoshop style program that opens in your web browser, and you have the option to save stuff onto your computer or as a URL. The URL option proves useful when you happen to be on a work PC, because of course USB sticks are now password protected which means for unknown reasons you can't save anything onto them, and naturally on Sundays the intranet doesn't work so you can't get onto your staff email to send the file to yourself... that's not just me, is it?

Saturday, 13 March 2010


Below is website worth looking at, if you ever read popbitch, heatworld, go fug yourself, or anything in between:


Look at the Eclipse decoded article. It's funny.

Friday, 12 March 2010


Thanks to twitter, the journal of Jhonen Vasquez is my favourite link today. Recently he has been writing interesting facts about Invader Zim, one of my favourite cartoons evarr.

I came across Vasquez via Roman Dirge / Lenore, through his blog I think. Dirge worked on a couple of episodes of Zim and the style of the two is quite similar. Vasquez is probably darker and a little bit more grown up whilst Dirge is a little cutesie at times though. Not that that's a bad thing, something I covet most is an original piece of Dirge artwork. He sticks it up on eBay sometimes but I've never yet been solvent / fast enough to get anything. One day...

Thursday, 11 March 2010


Film Cow - the website of the chap who created Charlie the Unicorn, which I first saw when I was at university.

He basically makes surreal, funny, dark animations. Often these feature cute animals doing horrific things, frinstance check out Detective Mittens, and Llamas with Hats. Or you know, just watch all of his stuff. Why not, you aren't busy.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010


BB guns are not for libraries. Sake.

In other news, remember weebls-stuff? I used to be on it all the time, but haven't looked in ages. There are now 18 episodes of On the Moon and 19 Catfaces.

This got me thinking, and sure enough David Firth has made another Burnt Face Man since last I looked - here.

Tuesday, 9 March 2010


Currently I am not very well, for the third week in a row. No human person should be so full of mucus, it's most unbecoming. It also detracts one's enthusiasm for writing, so I thought in the interim I might post interesting links so you can read the writing of other people instead.

Today, then, Neil Gaiman's blog. He's a hell of a name dropper, but then he does drop the names of some pretty cool people. The site is of interest to anyone who likes the work of Mr Gaiman himself of course, but also to anyone who has an interest in beekeeping, or Amanda Palmer. And he is quite good at flagging up random people and articles of interest too.

Monday, 8 March 2010

Beat Blog

You can follow the Guardian Edinburgh beatblog on Twitter now, but the main site hasn't gone live yet. Leeds and Cardiff are up and running though, so I assume it will be around the start of next week for our one.

Friday, 5 March 2010


Sign at the newly refurbished Nicol Edwards. It's not called that anymore actually, it is The Banshee Labyrinth. But there are signs outside with both names on, which is verging on confusing. Still, good sign work.

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Do Not Cross

Home made police tape, part of my Crime in the City display at work. The other pillar is wrapped in strips of paper with coloured fingerprints. Like you might find at a crime scene, yeah? Yeah. I'm cool.

Monday, 1 March 2010

Aaron A Aaronson

This copy of the yellow pages has been on top of one of the bus stops on my route to work for several months now. Will anyone ever remove it? I think not. It is like some kind of tenuous visual metaphor for these troubled times.