Rope swings hanging from trees
Grass sliding burning knees
Riding a Raleigh Chopper
Vinegar bowls soaking conkers
Queueing for a pay phone
Being reminded to say pardon
Going to school in short pants
Digging in dirt & catching ants
Ferrets catch rabbits we eat at tea
Bowl by bed for nighttime wee
Granny coming for the afternoon
Backside smacked with big spoon
Saturday comics, Whizzer & Chips
From cute girls try steal a kiss
Camping out in garden in tent
Knock on door they want weekly rent
Sunday morning paper round
Raiding apple trees can’t make a sound
.22 air rifle, catapults, crossbow
Being sick after eating stew
Door knocking & running
Summer river swimming
Swinging on moms feet
Penny bag of sweets
Little blue bags of salt in crisps
Saturday cinema club never missed
A big shout out to everyone who has supported my Etsy shop Jasper & Pud this year, it means so much to me and I’m grateful to each and every one of you :) I hope you all have an amazing time over the holiday season!
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Spend $10 or more and get 20% off with code: 20XMAS
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+ Every order gets a FREE Christmas Greeting card – just specify what one you would like in the notes section at checkout and it will be emailed to you after purchase :)
Matthew Hardman wasn’t your average Welsh teenager. From the age of 17, he had an extreme obsession with vampirism, and desperately sought out ways in which he could become a blood-sucking beast. Hardman was under the delusion that by killing someone and drinking their blood, he would unlock the secret to becoming a true vampire.
Before committing his truly savage crime, he had begged a German exchange student to suck his blood, as he believed she was a vampire. When she unsurprisingly refused, the deranged teen moved on to murdering an innocent pensioner.
90-year-old Mabel Leyshon knew young Matthew, as he frequently delivered newspapers to her house on his weekly paper round. He climbed through the old lady’s window as she sat in her favourite armchair watching television, and “sacrificed” her. He stabbed her frail body 22 times, collected her blood in a saucepan to drink, and cut her heart out. He placed her heart on a silver platter and attempted to eat it, but the taste was too foul for him. When he had finished, he placed two fire pokers in an upside down cross at her feet. Hardman was caught in 2001, and sentenced to a minimum of 12 years in prison.
Adam Cole is a reporter and producer for the science desk at NPR. He creates short documentary videos, radio pieces, animations, musical podcast segments, data visualizations, and GIFs about science. In 2014, Cole launched Skunk Bear, a visual science blog and YouTube channel that has built a robust audience on social media.
Cole came to NPR as an editorial intern for the science desk in January 2011, and was then hired to stay on as a production assistant from 2011 to 2012.
He got his start in journalism at The Ferndale Enterprise, a small but mighty local weekly paper in Northern California. Before that, he worked as a research scientist, studying the genetics of pancreatic cancer and the physics of mussel beds.
He uses scientific illustrations in a lot of his work. In a short interview, we asked him about his process:
Cole’s illustrations of different types of cells in the human body for a video about human cellular regeneration.
Describe how you learned to draw and your history with drawing/art. When did you combine science and art and how did that happen?
Like most kids, I started drawing before I can remember and I didn’t ever really stop. Before I could really write, I would tell my mom stories and she would write them down, and I would illustrate them. I remember one of my first stories was called “Albert The Alien.” It was a real thriller - some “bad guy” aliens attacked Albert’s home. I remember one detail in particular: Albert’s house was equipped with an alarm that went “BEEP BAD GUYS BEEP!”
I always liked to draw animals – real and imaginary. I’d go through phases - for a while the animals would all look kind of wolfy, and then they’d all start to look like frogs.
I don’t think there was any one moment where I started combining science and art - I’ve always loved both! Looking back at my notes from science class (from like third grade through college) it seems like I was more interested in drawing the things we were talking about than writing them down.
A doodle from Cole’s math notes. “This diagram of the FOIL method (how to multiply parenthetical expressions) became a mustachioed man!”
Who are your favorite artists/influences on your work?
I’m not super literate in the art field - but I do love children’s book illustrations. When I was a kid I read all 36 of Bill Pete’s books. He was a sketch artist and storyboarder on a lot of the early Disney films (from Snow White to the Jungle Book), but he was also a children’s author. One of his stories was an environmental fable about capybara-moose hybrids! That checked a lot of boxes for me.
When I started working at NPR and got interested in animation, I remember coming across a video called “The Thomas Beale Cipher.” I was blown away by the use of texture and light in something that was entirely animated - so that had a big impact on me. Years later, the producer of that video commented on one of my personal projects and it felt awesome.
I generally get a lot of inspiration from short films on Vimeo - I see little animation techniques that people use there for commercial and art projects and think, “Could I use that to tell stories about science?” I stumbled upon some work by Daniel Gies, and learned how to create animated “puppets” from him. I use that technique in most videos.
And of course, there’s Wes Anderson. My old partner Maggie Starbard and I used to say, “WWWAD - what would Wes Anderson do?” It wasn’t about mimicking his quirky sensibility - we admired his attention to visual detail, and the cohesion of his pieces. Years ago we made a couple shorts in more of a documentary style, but I decided that Skunk Bear’s aesthetic would be extremely produced and stylized. Everything in each shot should be composed–there for a reason–and feel like it was cut from the same cloth as all the other shots. WWWAD.
Each of your projects takes on a distinctly different illustration style. Can you talk about one example where the story dictated the look of the animation or illustration?
Form definitely follows the content. Our latest video was about the history and science of pencil lead, so of course I wanted the animations to be pencil sketches.
And that’s pretty much how it goes for every piece - we created characters and entire sets out of marshmallows in a video about finding the speed of light with peeps, I drew images with pumpkin seeds and pumpkin guts for our video on pumpkin facts, I used paper and book cover textures from a dictionary to talk about eponyms.
For those, the form was pretty obvious - we were talking about a thing, so that thing informed the aesthetic. Sometimes, its more about tone.
We did a collaboration with Robert Krulwich about an immortal animal. It had a very fairy tale feel to me - and of course Robert’s voice is perfect for narrating a story. So I went with watercolor illustrations for that - I wanted it to look like pages from a picture book.
Another time, I did a radio piece about dune restoration and I wanted the corresponding video to have a very retro-PSA feel. I put on an old-timey voice for the narration, and I looked to 1960’s era design for visual inspiration.
What challenges do you have as an illustrator and how do you work through them?
I’m not really that good at drawing compared to most illustrators, so I try to cheat as much as possible. I look at a lot of reference images, I draw rough and then trace my own work, trace over footage we’ve shot, I clean things up a lot in photoshop, I composite things. I don’t have any pride about that - I’ll cheat in whatever way I can to get the result I want.
I’m also a bit of a perfectionist, which clashes with my lack of skill. The result is I have trouble creating animations like look casual and loose - that great sketchy look. I’m still trying to work through that.
Is there anything specifically that you find challenging to draw?
When I was a kid, there was this girl named Sarah in my class who was really good at drawing horses. And I was always really jealous of her. My horses always ended up looking like weird dogs. Horses are crazy looking! What’s with that head? Where do the eyes actually sit? How do the legs bend? I still can’t draw horses.
One of Cole’s early drawings - “Instead of coloring books, I liked these books where there was just a blank space you got to fill in.”
I’m jumping in a bit late, but it’s for productive reasons at least.
Last week, I presented at my school’s Graduate Conference as part of a panel on current thesis research. I kept putting off preparation going, “It’s not till March!” Of course, I realized rather abruptly that it was March now, and oh crap the conference is the second weekend, not the third…
Fortunately, it went well. Despite not telling my advisor I was selected, he was still there to see the panel, and was pleased with my work. So all things considered, I’m happy with the week’s worth of work I put into it, and with the results.
This week I have to catch up on too many things to count… Today’s list: - research, outline and draft a 6-8 page paper - organize weekly tasks in my journal so I don’t forget anything - wash the dishes, goddamnit
So every week for my online Medical Law and Ethics class I have to write a weekly one page reaction paper. This weeks was on asking about the law banning employers from asking about criminal records in employment applications and first interviews in Pennsylvania. It’s illegal to btw. After the first interview employers are then allowed to do background checks and either hire or deny someone the job. But they must send the person a copy of the background check and a statement as to why they were not hired.
The teacher only gives a short sentence and then tells us to apply these ethical views to the situation. It’s hard especially when you don’t have any examples. So I came up with one on my own. Guess what was the first thing to pop up in my mind?
Yeah that’s right. I centered my reaction paper on Ant Man. But it was the perfect example! The laws are the same in San Francisco as in Philly, so why the hell not? We’ll see tomorrow if my teacher excepts it or not. He says as long we understand how we reached the conclusions we did with the ethical theories than we’re good. But he’s tricky and this is a college class so here’s hoping!
UPDATE: My teacher posted my grade. He gave me a 100% and said this:
From Entertainment Weekly (with Cumberbatch on the cover), scan from @zoshjo on twitter:
From the moment John le Carre’s The Night Manager was published in 1993, producers have tried to bring the spy master’s tale about arms dealing to the big screen. But a film never materialized, and for good reason: time constraints. “This is a fabulous book,” says le Carre’s son, Night Manager exec producer Simon Cornwell. “It’s got a vast scope to it. It just doesn’t fit into two hours.” The story is finally getting what it deserves as a six-episode miniseries, starring Tom Hiddleston as MI-6 field agent Jonathan Pine and Hugh Laurie as Richard Roper, a morally ambiguous weapons dealer whom Pine is tasked with bringing down.
“The best way I can describe the story is the thriller equivalent of a bromance.” says exec producer Stephen Garrett. That isn’t to say that The Night Manager is female-free - updating the story for 2016, the producers gender-flipped the role of Pine’s MI-6 handler, Leonard Burr, into Angela Burr (Olivia Colman). Fittingly, Hiddleston and Laurie formed a bromance of their own during the project’s development and over the course of the intensive 76-day shoot, which took them to Morocco, Majorca, Switzerland, and London. “[Laurie] can’t address me by my real name,” Hiddleston says, “I sign off emails to him as ‘Pine’, and he addresses me as 'Pine’. I don’t know why, but it makes us laugh.”