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Tuesday, 24 October 2017

"The Death of Stalin"

Saturday's visit to the cinema. Very funny, very well written, a rather dark comedy, a great cast, particularly good was Jason Isaacs as Marshal Zhukov and Simon Russel Beale as Beria, the head of the NKVD.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Middle East Buildings

Purchased a few weeks ago at the Border Rievers Show

I did some research on colours. In the 1990's I visited Jordan and Egypt and there are books of paintings from artists who travelled in the Middle East in the early 19th century. I looked at some of the ready assembled and painted model buildings on the market - many of those are too bright and pristine, one was so white the buildings looked like they were made from snow.

This is the scheme on which I decided, glue, sand, two coats of Citadel Karak Stone, a dark wash for weathering, dabs of Foundry Boneyard Shade, drybrush Tamiya Desert Yellow and Deck Tan. The figures are 3 Dixon Janissaries and a Hinchliffe Janissary, all now ready for basing.

Different lighting

Tower turned through 90 degrees

This gateway is a model I bought on Ebay two years ago, ready assembled and painted, this is the scheme I have tried to follow.

 I also bought this ruined cottage on Ebay. I think it was made by Jarvis. It was dark grey in colour so I have repainted it.

I enjoyed making and repainting the buildings. I will buy a couple more from Warbases, such as some steps for the wall. I shall also keep an eye on Ebay for more bargains.

Monday, 9 October 2017

BladeRunner 2049

We had a trip to the cinema on Saturday. I have waited YEARS for this. I was very well rewarded. This film is fantastic, for once the hype is true. I was awestruck. The director, Denis Villeneuve, has done a wonderful job. Great acting, great locations beautifully filmed, a really good story that is allowed to develop and evolve throughout the film. Without hesitation - 5 stars, 10/10.

Sunday, 8 October 2017

A good week - books and a course

This week the postman left two books and a DVD, all of which were purchased from Amazon traders.

First - following on from the holiday reading of the book on Saladin, this book covers the period of 1415 - 1575.

Second - this new volume from Osprey, my library of French history continues to grow

Third - I don't know how or why I have not seen this film before, I am a big fan of Ridley Scott and this was his first feature film. Something to look forward to one afternoon next week.

I always feel guilty about buying online from Amazon. The company has been accused of setting up an internal structure in Luxembourg with the aim of reducing its tax bill and I feel as though I am complicit in and encouraging their tax avoidance. To counter that, the pricing is very attractive, the Osprey book was 8.40 pounds, in a bookshop (if they stocked the book) it would have cost 11 pounds, so I saved around 25per cent. In itself, this is not a huge monetary saving, but over a year because of the number of books and films and CDs I buy, the saving is quite substantial. What a dilemma.

October is the start of the new academic year. This week I began a course with the University of York's Centre for Lifelong Learning, "The Spanish Civil War" for the Autumn Term, 10 Thursdays, 13.00 - 15.00 hrs, purely for the learning and for interesting discussions with fellow history geeks. This is the second year that David, the lecturer, has run the course. Last year I was too late with my booking, the course was already full. This year I booked as soon as I could to ensure my place. 

This is the lecture outline for week one.