By tov617, Oct 18 2017 01:03PM

#Inktober Why for millennia should such a simple arrangement remain so enigmatic? A bird perch, a gateway, a frame to hang trinkets, lights or prayers from. The branch-wood versions and principle enlargements into henge forms I have been making around Castor and Peterborough have a rough but elegant beauty - derived both from the natural branch shapes and the arrangement during the build, usually by necessity of length, trial and error. Rather than the phoenix drawn here, collared doves and wood pigeons are the major occupiers of the Torii in the garden. #Inktober2017

By tov617, Oct 17 2017 08:32AM

#Inktober2017 Day 13. Teeming.

The UK government's attempts to extract compensation from councils and developers who had willfully destroyed valuable agricultural land during the first half of the 21st century had proved difficult to enforce; mostly due to the more pressing urgency of population management and emergency food production as sea levels continued to rise. The polar ice caps had melted much faster than expected shrinking vast areas of usable land and forcing other strategies for housing, municipal management and industrial expansion.

2080 saw the new installation of Peterborough's first fission reactor though other forms of tethered electricity generation continued for temporary power supplies as required. Peterborough by this stage had already seen the second expansion of its seawalls. Towable industrial platforms continued to be utilised in topsoil salvage and the new construction projects on the surrounding saltmarshes.

This was the view from the entrance to the old site of the Castor Hanglands National Nature Reserve in 2117, shortly before the Hanglands was ploughed up for desperately needed arable and the landfill waste processing facility built on the adjacent wetlands. #Inktober

By tov617, Oct 17 2017 08:28AM

#Inktober Day 12: Shattered. Friday was spent talking to those who kindly have helped me in sorting out some of the work left outstanding, after which was a family meal and I then went to bed asap, so I'm two days behind now...

Bez, our 11 year old Labrador, and I did get our daily hobble round the lanes and fields, he with his arthritis and me with my (pre and post op) injuries. Both of us usually like to rest when we get to the stile into the horse field and that gave me the spark for today's drawing #inktober2017

By tov617, Oct 17 2017 08:18AM

For over 10,000 years humanity has been trying to harness the biological and chemical alchemy that makes beer using basic ingredients usually: water, barley, hops and yeast. Scientific advancements have only relatively recently understood the complex chemical reactions that occur during the brewing process.

A simple grass known as barley grows grains that exist to reproduce and provide a food source for the new plants. The malting process tricks the barley into germinating creating fermentable sugars and amino acids in the process. Mixing this malted barley with warm water sets off another chemical reaction producing a sweet liquid known as wort. This is known as mashing, much like making a cup of tea. The wort is then transferred to a vessel in which it is boiled, thus initiating another chemical reaction. Hops added during the boil give bitterness to the beer. Hops contain alpha acids and the boiling process helps fix these acids in the solution. Hops also contain volatile compounds giving distinctive flavours and aromas, and boiling will evaporate these compounds, so the art is to add these hops at the latter stages of the boil or at ‘flame off’ thus retaining flavour and aromas. The wort is now a bitter/sweet concoction and needs to be rapidly cooled before the introduction of the essential ingredient: yeast. The ‘run off’ process through a heat exchange reduces the temperature providing the right conditions for the yeast to flourish and instigate the fermentation process. Those sugars released during the malting process now provide essential food for the yeast to feed on, and feed they do, gobbling the fermentable sugars like glucose and maltose, producing carbon dioxide and alcohol as waste products. And three weeks later you’re drinking a cool, refreshing beer full of flavour. #Inktober2017