Tipp No. 10: “It is more than just about a bird…” – Anthony Theakston (British Sculptor and Ceramic Designer)

arts, Creatures, Kunst, Tipps

Bird Jug

The Artist Anthony Theakston


Anthony Theakston studied Ceramic Design at Bristol and Cardiff. He has lectured at Camberwell College of Arts and Crafts as well as many other institutions. Anthony captures a bird’s essential traits with minimal detail, using a special ‘speckle’ glaze that he has created. He sprays colour into the glaze, building up areas that he wishes to emphasise.
His work has received many awards and can be found in numerous collections including the British Council, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford and Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.
It also features in several books including ‘Time for Tea’ and ‘Ceramic Sculpture’ and is considered to be highly collectable. Anthony exhibits throughout the UK. He lives in Lincolnshire with his family.

Please, visit his website that includes wonderful art pieces offered for sales…

Website: https://www.anthonytheakstonceramics.co.uk/

Haiku No. 18: “How to lose your life” (Wie man sein Leben verliert…)

arts, Gedichte, Kunst, poems, Psychologie, psychology, Tipps


Early Haiku exercises (beyond 5-7-5 rules)…

Adaptation beyond recognition,
Constant self-marketing and -optimization;
Fake Life.

Anpassung bis zur Unkenntlichkeit,
Ständige Selbstvermarktung und -optimierung;

Haiku / Poem No. 26: Fearless (Furchtlos)

arts, Gedichte, Kunst, poems, Psychologie, psychology


A possibly interesting question: What would YOU do if you weren`t afraid?

Eine möglicherweise interessante Frage: Was würdest DU tun, wenn Du keine Angst hättest?

Face truth
Take responsibility
Feel sad
Let go
Cut Distance
Allow A Hug
Restart dreaming
Take action

Der Wahrheit ins Auge blicken
Verantwortung übernehmen
Traurig fühlen
Distanz verkürzen
Eine Umarmung gestatten
Wieder beginnen, zu träumen

zur Tat schreiten

Tipp No. 70: Water Colour Wildlife & Landscape Paintings by The Artist Ben Woodhams (Denmark / Bornholm Island)

arts, Creatures, Kunst, Nature, Reisen, Tipps, Travel

I totally fell in love with Ben`s work…I would like to share a few of his wonderful water colour paintings.

As you might have noticed from visiting my tiny blog, I am at home in Northern Germany. Northern Germans are often teased by calling them: “fish heads, shell pushers and dike tramplers”.  I suppose, I am touched by Ben`s art because on one hand I know his themes well and because ….I can feel the weather looking at his paintings, on the other hand I seem to share his perspectives and perception of moods, colours, surface structures etc…Besides, the picture composition and other details of Ben`s aquarelles reminds me on Japanese paintings. 

However, I am very glad that I stumbled upon his wordpress blog linked to his website:



Ben Woodhams is an English artist and illustrator currently living and working on the Danish island of Bornholm in the Baltic Sea.

After beginning a career in museums and art galleries as an exhibition curator and designer, Ben and his family moved to Bornholm in 2008, where he works as an artist, illustrator and educator.

Ben’s practice is founded in direct observation and specialises in birds, working primarily in watercolour. Studies of living birds are made in the field, while dead birds are taken to the studio. Moments in time, and the relationship between the process of observation and depiction, are the engines that drive Ben’s work – the tension between the ‘need’ to capture the moment or the vision, and the desire to let the medium speak its own language.

Recently Ben has been studying changes in the landscape through space and time. The patterns made by a passing flock of cranes, the rising tide within a rock pool, shadows moving over a rock during a day, an oilseed rape field blooming over a period of weeks, changes through the seasons and over years.

Of course, Ben is offering original paintings as well as limited printed editions for purchase.

Interestingly, he is teaching aquarell painting  & drawing (in English and Danish language) for private and public groups (all age classes) additionally.  
He focus on observation-based drawing, watercolour painting and relief printing techniques and put emphasis on outdoor drawing and painting.

Just a few impressions of BORNHOLM – as a teaser that I don`t need anymore….Maybe, we will see each other on Bornholm island in 2019?

Shared No. 70: Cit.: “My Life with Gracie Reminded Me Even Small Gifts Help Keep Doors Open For Those Who Have No Voice” by Dad4Gracie

arts, Cartoons, Creatures, humor, Insights, Kunst, Nature, Oddities

Please, feel free to visit the very charming blog of the artist Dad4Gracie that provides you with funny insights, heartwarming stories and universal wisdoms of his lively chicken family.

The beautifully ilustrated finding below refers to the capital campaign in favor of the St. John`s church in Portsmouth, which is well-known for supporting homeless and other vulnerable members of their local community.

The capital campain shall provide the church with a new roof, repair water damage to the stonework, and replace the knob and tube wiring that could cause a serious electrical fire.

Give yourself a special christmas or seasonal gift

…by making a small donation. You will find a link to the charity webiste on the blog “My Life with Gracie”….simply follow the link at the end of this post.

No, you won`t become visible, you are possibly no member of this community, you might have another religion, you are financially challenged at the time being (like I am due to the sudden death of my car), you wont get any direct payback or feedback …and nevertheless you´re compassionate and willing to be of help without any vanity & shelfishness. That`s true (inner) beauty which might rise you self-respect and -self esteem. Levitate your spirit…and prove that someone who is in need, will be helped — even by strangers at remote places. I am not religious frankly speaking but I believe that the universe wont forget anything….

However, Gracie and her chicken sisters, who are doing their best to support St. John`s too (pls. see the wonderful cartoon of Dad4Gracie below), are clucking: “Danke schön! Thank you! Merci! Xiexie! Gracias! Grazie! Shukran! Spassiba! Domo arigatou!”  

Dad4Gracie`s Blog:   https://mylifewithgracie.com/2018/10/14/my-life-with-gracie-even-small-gifts/

Even Small Gifts

PS: It would be also very kind of you to reblogg and forward this post or even better Dad4Gracies original post to increase the reach….Thx.

Postcard No. 12: “COLOGNE, MAINZ and DUSSELDORF” – The People`s Voice…provocative Carnival Floats in Germany

arts, humor, Kunst, Oddities, Reisen, Tipps, Travel


Blond is the new Brown/Brunette (the brown color is associated  with right-wing extremist parties, nationalists & autocrats)

Hitler (Germany; Hitler could be replaced by Alexander Gauland / current leader of the AfD) – Wilders (Netherlands) – Marie Le Pen (France) – Donald Trump (USA)

By the way, just a small detail, many people abroad don`t know…Adolf Hitler was no German Citizen. He was an Austrian migrant from Braunau.


It is said that Carnival was already celebrated in Mesopotamia 5000 years ago.

Since 12th century, carnival is celebrated in Germany. The German carnival parades in the Rhine-Main area (to be differentiated from the Pagan Fastnacht / Shrovetide in Southern Germany & Switzerland) are absolutely unique due to its historical background & special traditions like the satirical floats, throwing candy, costumes balls, marching bands in historical uniforms of France & Prussia, huge Carnival clubs and so on.

The Cologne Carnival, as well as those in Mainz, Eschweiler and Düsseldorf, are the largest and most famous. The next week of party will start end of Feb. 2019.


On Carnival Thursday (called “Old Women Day” or “The Women’s Day” in commemoration of an 1824 revolt by washer-women), women storm city halls, cut men’s ties, and are allowed to kiss any passing man. This tradition is still alive. Even in other public buildings and corporate offices men should better wear cheap ties on this day of the year…


The carnival parades and floats make fun of individual politicians and other public figures. Many speeches do the same. This worldwide unique tradition has got his origin in 18th century, when the Rhine-Main area was occupied by French troops led by Napoleon and later on by Prussian troops. The Carnival clubs / guilds that create the satirical floats were founded by urban guilds. The handcraft guilds were namely forbidden by the occupiers because the guilds represented free urban citizenship with political Rights, influence & a network of power thanks to their partnerships with guilds in other “free” cities that want to be ruled neitherby monarchs nor by churches. In medieval times, there was a famous proverb: “City Air makes free”. On the Country side the farmers were dependent on the liege lords and the churches, who owned the land and possessed a lot of privileges.  De facto, the rural people were nothing else but slaves.


During carnival people wear costumes often including a coverage of their faces. There was an attempt to forbid this coverage of faces. And a special police force – called “The Sparks” was founded to enforce this rule of king Wilhelm (?). But this attempt failed. Instead of following the new rule, the German city citizens made fun of it and established a carnival group called the “Sparks” and added the “Spark Mariechen” (Young Beautiful girls) to their carnival dancing groups. These girls in uniform perform risky acrobatic stunts and are often thrown into the air (like Cheerleaders) and are then caught by the group again… It is said that this dancing choreography was understood as a hidden warning in former times….”We – the People – can let you fall”…or: “Kingdoms rise and fall”.

The tradition, carnival freedoms and anonymity allows the people to break taboos, critisize the king & noble houses, majors, elites, bureaucrats and armed forces bluntly. The costume balls and parties provided an opportunity for women & men to meet each other and to flirt without being judged by others.

The tradition to make drastically fun of individuals, organisations and systems in power like politicians, churches / religions, industry sectors / reps (local, domestic and international ones) is still very much alive!

At this occasion , I`d like to outline that it is not my Intention to insult anybody or to promote an opinion by publishing the images of the very popular carnival motif-floats. There are motifs that don´t comply with my taste / style…but the topics are always up-to-date.

Actually, everything & anybody can become subject of the motif-floats. Nobody is safe, and everybody has to be prepared to face derision. The bigger the pain & annoyment, the bigger is the suspicion that the derision possess a core of truth.

I am glad that we`ve got the freedom to design these motif floats, to express ourself not only during carnival season. The parades and funny but sharp Carnival speeches prove that many people are educated, informed, able to question the status-quo, are not afraid  of criticism & expressing opinions and that they are interested in politics & Society topics…and that they are still determined to participate. It namely needs some significant Background knowledge & education to understand the satirical motif floats.

By the way, every year Carnival groups and marching bands of our neighbor countries are invited and join the parades. In my view, it would be exciting if our neighbors would contribute (more) own carnival motif floats additionally.

Let`s have a look at a few examples of the satirical motif floats…


Carnival Club “Rheinische Garde Blau” anti-war motif – “No war in Syria, Iran and in the Ukraine!”


Two big babies trying to impress each other with the size of their…Missiles.


European Hitler greeting arm lifted / supported by Vladimir Putin




Emmanuel Macron (French President) as Napoleon in a vintage car (provided with fuel by Germany) with reference to his idea of an EU Reform – beyond a mere trade union – headed by France.


Berlusconi (former president of Italy), who is well-known for his sex parties, homophoby and close relations to the Italian mafia.


Putin (leader of Russia, who is often present in the media with Images, on which he shows his naked upper body to appear manly), on the left arm: Economy and on the right arm: Military.



Angela Merkel / CDU (chancelor of Germany for already 14 years) as Mammoth and Martin Schulz (former leader of the opposition party SPD), who is unable to challenge her.


Ex-Chancelor Gerhard Schröder with a case full of Money from ROSNEFT (huge oil / energy industry corporation) in the butt of the Russian bear…corruption? After his lost re-election Schröder was employed as a “Consultant”.


The German emblem “The Eagle” (also called “fat chicken”) with a Burning right wing: “Attacks on refugee centres”.


Typical German lawn gnomes…(a well-known symbol for old-fashioned, penny-pinching babbits who are close to Right-wing extremist parties). On the signs: “No mixed cultures”, “Betrayer (of the Bio-German People) go home!”, “Reichs-Gnome” (Reich = Kingdom = Nazi slang), “The Beet is Full/Crowded!”


German chancelor Merkel as a turtle

Rosenmontag am Rhein - Düsseldorf

Schulz / SPD, who was popular and caused an upturn of the SPD for a short time, failed to challenge Merkel because of his own fault. Today, the SPD (coalition partner of the CDU)lost her credibility completely and is continuously losing her supporters.

Traditional Rose Monday carnival parade in Duesseldorf

“The next one, please!” – A reminder never to underestimate chanceleor Merkel. In fact, she was able to block all of her Critics and competitors silently. On the skulls & bones the names of German politicians.


On the bear: Russia Affaire


On the sausage “Democracy”, the animal (I cannot identify): Polish goverment and the dirt: “Dictatorship”


Former communist countries Poland & Hungary shift to dictatorships led by conservative nationalists, autocrats and their supporters (right-wing extremists).

Both countries that are EU members, are critisized for not accepting a fair share of refugees.


Angela Merkel / German chancelor and the former German – American Relations. Since the election of D. Trump there is a wind of change. today, the German Government is talking About becoming more Independent and is admitting that there are competeing interests, of Course. In the past, German politicians and public media were always talking about “our friends” (the States) like using a prayer wheel.


“Rotten/ bad credits” – Banks are purging on the German tax payer, who was betrayed by the financial institutions (that caused the financial crisis, triggered by the breakdown of the Lehman bank) and then had to rescue the Banks by providing tax money.


Greece went bancrupt. The EU took over the debts of Greece and provided billions of  financial aids two times, as far as I know. A debt cancellation was no option because it would have resulted in a downgrade of the creditworthiness rating of other struggling Southern European EU members like Italy and Spain. Greece is still blaming Germany for its economic crisis because Germany insists on “Saving Money” (reduction of governmental expenses) like the German government is doing it for many years (see the Slogan on the arm of Merkel “you have to save money!”) Greece called the German politicians Nazis because of this precondition for further financial injections. Again, Germany (who is providing > 1/3 of the EU Budget) is simply the scapegoat in my view.

Actually, Greece falsified documents and balance sheets to gain the EU Membership – without Meeting the Basic requirements. Greece was living from credits and unfortunately didn´t reinvest the credit money in his infrastructure and new Industry as urgently needed. Besides, Greece is suffering from a high level of corruption and nd other money drains, such as a widely accepted tradition not to pay any taxes.

It is also critisized that the Greek People don`t take benefit of the financial aids because the Money is transferred directly to the Banks to cover at least the interest rates of the Greek (bad) credits. I think, it is true. Actually, we are rescueing again the banks only, who provided rotten credits to not creditworthy countries – speculating on the tax money of EU countries, which will step in to avoid another economic crisis. The system is completely insane!

TOP priority should be to get the financial institutions under control. Maybe these parasits should be simply nationalized. I am not willing to minimize their business risks and to secure their profits by paying taxes.


On the side of the float: Support of Banks.

Greece receives financial aids for survival but the money is forwarded directly to the wealthy elites, who don`t pay ny taxes and sabotage Greece recovery. The EU money  is rather transferred to banks abroad (see above), while the People of Greece are facing a breakdown of their HealthCare, economy, pension schemes and public infrastructure etc.

Italy could become the next candidate…As you can see, there are many provocative motifs for future floats.


The major of Dusseldorf City is hunting the head of a financial Institution based in Dusseldorf, who wants avoid taxes on profits.


German economy (Merkel) and France (ex president Sarkozy)


On the feather tail of the tiny, naked, vain cock: “Your Berlusconi (ex president of Italy) is back.”


“Refugee Graveyard – Mediterranian Sea” – On the boat: “This is the true downfall of the Occident”


The States and the Mexican migration issue.


The wave of refugees might let sink the CDU Government led by Merkel


Islamic Terror doesn`t intimidate us.


Satire cannot be killed.


The Pope Franziskus: Beating…but with dignity.


IS Terrorist calls an AfD politician (AfD = newcomer right-wing party in Germany that fuels hatred on muslims) “useful idiots”.


ex US-President Bush (Christian extremism vs Muslim extremism)


Turkish president Erdogan – not ErdoWahn ( = Erdo-delusion, writing on the turban) -who is accused to be a right-wing Islamist & autocrat, who cannot stand criticism and other opinions (he accused all kind of people – like politicians, journalists, Judges, police etc. – to be terrorists in order to silence and imprison them if required), Erdogan is causing great tensions in Germany – not only he used to Insult Germany and its reps by calling them Nazis etc. but also by alienating and taking influence on the huge Turkish community that lives in Germany (often in 3rd Generation) and becomes more & more conservative and religous. The majority of Turks in Germany (with or without German passport) seems to be more loyal to Turkey than to Germany and is critisized for supporting and cit.”loving”  Erdogan who is establishing a corrupt dictatorship in the view of many bio-Germans, who don`t understand why their Turkish neighbours love an authoritarian, islamistic autocrat, while enjoying the Benefits & prosperity of  a liberal, tolerance-based democracy with all kind of freedoms and a clear separation between religion and state/government. It is said that the Turks in Germany love Erdogan and its rude nationalism due to an inferiority complex. Besides, they think that Erdogan is responsible for the economic upswing in Turkey that was very much less developed and poor compared with Europe.  Today, Turkey is in the middle of an economic Crisis due to his high Inflation and his high Levels of governmental but also private debts.  Turkey has to ask Germany and the EU for financial support now. Among the Turks in Germany it is not tolerated to critisize Erdogan. The social pressure is high. The Turkish Government has estblsihed a Hotline – for German Turks to denunciate Turks who critisize the Turkish Government.


“Carnival for All!” … all Kind of religions including atheists.


IS and Erdogan (president of Turkey) clinking glasses with the blood of the Kurds.

The Kurds are a minority group in Turkey, who are aiming for an independent state within the borders of the former “Kurdistan” – a country that was divided after WWI and covers territory in Turkey, Syria, Iran and Iraq.
The Kurds don`t support the Government of Erdogan and are accused to be terrorists due to their separatism.
Same time, the Kurds are successfully fighting back the IS troops – and prevent the expansion of the IS (also in direction to the Turkish territory). The Kurds are known for their bravery but suffer from high losses, very limited resources and poor Western support. Western countries namely try to maintain good relations to Turkey. Turkey is a NATO member of geostrategical importance and the EU is dependent on Turkey that blocks increasing refugee flows (coming from the Middle East, Africa, Afghanistan but also from Pakisthan, Bangladesh & India).  In fact, Turkey is paid well for closing its borders. Furthermore, it is the aim of the West to avoid that Russia and China gain more influence in the European backyard utilizing Turkey as an entrance. The Kurds have to pay the bill. They are caught in between the lines of fire. Enemies like Turkey and the IS are easily agreeing on a common foe – the Kurds.

By the way, the still biggest migrant group in Germany are the Turkish people (since the 60`s/70`s) and of course, Germany gave home to a huge amount of Kurdish migrants as well…


“Cultivation of Traditions / Heritage” (writing at the side of the float) – Cardinal Meissner (a very conservative German catholic) is burning a Woman, who confessed an abortion. Abortions till the 12th week (I think) are legal in Germany. Abortions at a later stage of pregnancy require an exemption and special justification.


First suicide bomber: REALITY; second one: Chliché / stereotype.


Thousands of people attend the carnival parades, that you can watch on TV as well, every year. The party continues in bars & clubs, ballrooms or at home. Many People take holidays for a week.

Map with Carnival and Fastnacht Locations in Germany.



Helau (Dusseldorf)!  Allaaf (Cologne)! …These are the two most common Carnival Greetings.

More Rural Fastnacht

The Fastnacht with ist local rituals, fairytales and very old handmade costumes (that are forwarded from one generation to the next one) is a completely different story.