Tuesday 17 January 2012

Excuses: A Luxury Assortment Pack

Pick an excuse; any excuse.  I've got loads for why I've lost "First 12 for '12" so badly, and you can take your pick as to which (if any) you feel like accepting.  What follows is a list of other stuff I've been doing instead of winning my own blog race...

Drawing big geometric doodles with Sharpie pens - as mentioned earlier.  Iteration 4 is now in progress.  No Sharpie yet, but I've plotted out the basic forms in pencil, and so far it looks more like a grapefruit than anything else.  Might show you a WIP photo eventually, but not yet.

Trying to design aliens - part of an ongoing (if intermittent) effort to work out what the major races of Universe XGT look like, in collaboration with Tim.  The designs range from ones sprung entirely from my own imagination, via some intermediate co-designed ones, to a few species where Tim has said what they look like and I've taken it upon myself to interpret that in pencil.  I've got one or two species presenting headaches at the moment, but once they're sorted out I might do a post featuring a selection of the drawings.  Maybe.  Watch this space.

Occasional cooking lessons - I haven't set fire to the kitchen yet, but I've had a go once or twice.  This afternoon's masterclass was in the preparation of pasta bolognaise, which turned out more or less edible.  However, I can't say I did it all myself, and I've got my doubts over whether it'd have been anywhere near as non-poisonous if I had.

Developing a bit of a musical superiority complex - I was given two CDs for Christmas, little sister got one too, and I have to say I think I got the better end of the deal, not just quantitatively but also qualitatively.  She had something by some chap called Michael W. Smith - whose parents, I can't help thinking, were rather clumsy to have missed out the 'H.' that everyone knows should come between the 'W.' and the 'Smith', but that's another story.  I had Jurassic Park OST by John Williams, and Karl Jenkins' Requiem.  From what I've heard of MW(H)S, he sounds like just-another-pop-singer sort of thing, and I can't say I'm especially impressed.

Jurassic Park, on the other hand, is John Williams at his finest.  If you let me count a whole film series (e.g. all six Star Wars episodes) as a single musical opus, then I'd probably say JP is outclassed by SW, and maybe also Indiana Jones, but in terms of musical achievement within a single film, I think I'd vote JP as Williams' masterpiece.

Requiem, meanwhile, is a bit of an odd album, but quite a fascinating one.  It actually comprises two unrelated suites of music, setting three separate text cycles in a total of four languages (Latin, Japanese, Welsh and English, in order of appearance).  The first, and by far the longer, of the two suites is the eponymous Requiem, and I've found it fascinating listening: considering that a Requiem, by definition, is a funerary work, a mass for the souls of the dead, it's a lot less sombre than you might expect.  Elegaic in places, yes, but in the end it's actually rather uplifting.

Keeping up with Sherlock and stuff - I've seen episodes 1.1 and 1.2 twice each, and 1.3, 2.1 and 2.2 once each, plus read the script for 1.2, so my do-list for the rest of this week includes catching up on 2.3 before it goes off iPlayer on Sunday evening.  Between Moffat and Gattiss writing at their best, and the brilliant casting and acting of Cumberbatch and Freeman, I've found all five episodes so far to be very good.  Much looking forward to the next one.  Before you ask, I can't make any comparison to the recent feature films, as I haven't seen those.  But I can compare Sherlock to Doctor Who, and I'd say the latest series of S (so far) has been much more rewarding viewing than the latest series of DW.

Completing the Root Hill DVD 2011! - yes, at long last.  The discs are in the post (well, most of them; I ran out of disc labels so the last few copies will be sent in a few days)... after four-and-a-half months in the planning and execution 8p

Writing the pilot script for a new animated series which might be the successor to Arbitrary Stopframe - when I laid AS Series 1 to rest back in December, I don't think I'd even come up with this idea.  It grew out of the production of Smells Interesting a couple of weeks later if I remember right.  The general concept is that it will feature three characters (new ones created specifically for the show), paper-cutout animation, and dialogue, with less emphasis on technical virtuosity relative to AS, and more emphasis on strange, random humour.  Maybe as much as 2 or 3 minutes per episode.  No idea how many episodes (if any) will end up getting made.  We shall have to wait and see.

  • First 12 for '12 status: 9 down, 3 to go - I've lost. Oh well.
  • Latest book read: the end of 2 Samuel from the KJV
  • Latest film/TV watched: Middlemarch (1994 BBC version), part 6 of 6
  • Latest music listened to: Requiem by Karl Jenkins
  • Latest edible item eaten: that spag bol
  • Predominant colour of clothes: shabby blue-greys again
  • Programs and web pages currently running: Microsoft Office Outlook and Word 2007, Firefox (tabs: MatNav 6.1; Blogspot Dashboard; Blogspot Create Post), Skype
  • Webcomics posted today: Fort Paradox Backstage

- The Colclough


  1. I had a fright when I saw you'd been working on a "New Animated..." I'm glad it's not that. 8] I'm intrigued by this. Once I'd realised that you weren't on about you-know-what, I was 99.9999% percent sure what you were on about, until you said "new characters", and that lost me. Again. Bother it, I wanna see NOW!

    1. well, my old fellow-conspirator, get yourself onto Ye Olde Skype and i'll spill the beans B)

  2. You forgot to mention that you watched the original 1954 Godzilla. You could have included the Music of Akira Ifukube in your music part.

    The new Sherlock version of Hound of the Baskervilles is OK but it is better with the original story. My favourite version of the story is the 2002 BBC Production starring Richard Roxburgh.

    Bolognaise is not too hard to cook, I may do a recipe of it on my blog.

    When I get the idea behind this new show idea of yours could I maybe write an episode?
    When you say dialogue do you mean speech bubbles or actual voices (or both)?

    Finally where did you come last year when it was just between You and Hannah?

    1. i knew i was forgetting something! well, i'll just have to give Godzilla a whole post of its own to compensate, won't i. although i might wait until i've finished watching the extra features on the DVD (which will hopefully be soon).

      by 'dialogue', i mean actual voices. i've got a USB microphone. and i'd be very happy to let you write an episode. the script for ep 1 is finished, and i'm working on 2 and 3; if the storylines work out alright then i'll start animating and let the world see what i'm up to.

      last year, hannah still beat me, but only by 1 post instead of 8, so it was a bit less embarrassing!