Edinburgh – the return!

But this time the weather wasn’t quite so kind. We’d been having a mini-heat wave in the Midlands so I’d been wearing shorts for at least a week which of course meant when I went to pack for my little trip up north I completely mis judged the clothing I needed. In the end I resorted to emergency buying some jeans, spent the rest of the week wearing them too…

…I did think to pack some much more interesting art supplies this time though. I took a pad of pastel paper with me as well as a box of artist quality chalks. They’re so nice (though messy) to use, just a dozen in a range of greys. With this I went up Arthur’s Seat again…

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…when I finally got fed up of fixative being blown back into my face I broke out the pens…

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Dyslexia actually has some advantages…

Fancy that now….so there is actually a sugar coating to the misery of depression, poor self esteem and lack of self confidence, general under-achievement and serious anger issues that I like many other dyslexic have been left with thanks to our unpleasant brush with formal education. (I’m not including University in this, my uni experiences are almost all highly positive.)

Quite a few dyslexia-positive sites will give lists of the numerous advantages we have but I found the best summary at Dyslexia Advantage, they’d even got a nice acroynm for it, MIND. Apparently your avarage dyslexic won’t exhibit all of these traits but will definitely have one, maybe two if they’re lucky.

Material Reasoning – Reasoning about the position, form and movement of objects in 3d space.

I’ve heard some people describe having video screens in their minds. Personally it’s more like I’ve got an entire film studio complete with multilpe stage sets, lighting and atmospheric control, a few crew, actors, everything you can imagine…and all of it I can manipulate at the drop of a hat.

Interconected Reasoning The ability to spot, understand and reason about connections and relationships.

Absolutely essential for true creative thinking, out-of-the-box creativity. Take two unrelated and apparently incompatible things and put them together in new and interesting ways…and probably why writing cross-over fanfiction really appeals to some people. I will admit it I read things and then think “oh but this would be brilliant crossed with…” Things just click together in new and exciting ways.

Narrative Reasoning Ability to reason using fragments of memory formed from past personal experience.

I’m not sure I quite understand this one, I’m pretty certain I don’t do this.  At all.

Dynamic ReasoningAbility to accurately predict using patterns derived through experincing the future or the unwitnessed past.

Apart from sounding like clairvoyance I suspect that this one is probably very useful for business and the like, being able to think several moves ahead of everyone around you, or how about playing chess…

 

Batman v Superman

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I went to see it on the 25th in 3d and…seriously I need to see it again I think before I can really give a good opinion of it, plus I’m definitely going to view it in 2d next time.

My eyesight and the 3d-ness weren’t always compatible, with things on the screen appearing double in places. One of the trials of being short-sighted, it’s bad enough wearing one pair of glasses, but two?

One thing I am very clear on is that the critics are very wrong, this is not a terrible movie. It is a very dense film that makes no allowences for viewers who are unfamiliar with the source material. You also have to be on your toes as it jumps from character view-point to character view-point. Fall asleep, lose concentration, miss anything at all and you’ll be left wondering what the heck is going on.

It is also very much a DC movie, richly gothic and dark and dramatic and brooding in a way that Marvel’s comics never are, which I think makes a nice contrast. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t lighter moments, like Alfred’s bemoaning the lack of little Waynes running around, and just his general verbal poking of Bruce.

That leads me to the acting, which was brilliant. Affleck got the Bat down in a way that I don’t think anyone has managed before, Cavill was great too, but I really enjoyed Gadot. She really came over brilliantly as this metahuman who was sort of living among humanity but slightly removed, but then things starting happening and Wayne susses her out and she gets drawn back into really living rather than just exsisting. Her conscience won’t allow her to do anything else.

Oh yes, and Lex Luthor is just about the mose twisted evil psychotic sack of dnakey poo ever. You only realise just how far he’d gone plotting and setting everything up to his owns ends somewhere near the end of the film.

It appears I have an opinon afterall…but yes, I need to see it again but preferably in 2d.

 

Keeping my New Years resolution.

So far, so good. This one has been sitting around for months at just a rough outline waiting for me to do something with it. So this week I attacked it with several 8B pencils 🙂 The board that it’s pinned to is more or less A1 sized. I’m not sure quite what I was thinking when I started a drawing this large of Comet 67p, I think I’d just been really impressed by some of the utterly gorgeous images that Rosetta sent back with all the jets of material coming off. This isn’t just some barren lumpy conglomeration of rock, it’s got its own life-cycle thing going on.

Still loads more to do to it of course. I was thinking of switching to a 4B to do the more detailed parts but the more I look at it I may just drop to a 7 or 6B.

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It’s so hard to explain dyslexia when you actually have it…

…the best description I’ve come across is on the British Dyslexia Accosiation website.

Everybody of course understands it as difficulties with reading and writing, maybe maths as well; though it is increadibly irritating the number of people who automatically assume this means I have no functional literacy skills, especially when it turns out my spelling is better than theirs, which happens more often than you’d think.

It’s the other less obvious and less will known problems that dyslexics share with many others with what are termed Specific Learning Difficulties…

Information Processing.

  • Difficulties with taking in information efficiently (this could be written or auditory).
  • Slow speed of information processing, such as a ‘penny dropping’ delay between hearing something and understanding and responding to it.

Memory.

  • Poor short term memory for facts, events, times, dates.
  • Poor working memory; i.e. difficulty holding on to several pieces of information while undertaking a task e.g. taking notes as you listen, coping with compound questions.
  • Mistakes with routine information e.g. giving your age or the ages of your children.
  • Inability to hold on to information without referring to notes.

Communication skills.

  • Lack of verbal fluency and lack of precision in speech.
  • Word-finding problems.
  • Inability to work out what to say quickly enough.
  • Misunderstandings or misinterpretations during oral exchanges.
  • Over-loud speech (which may come across as aggressive) or murmuring that cannot be clearly heard.
  • Sometimes mispronunciations or a speech impediment may be evident.

Literacy.

  • Lateness or difficulty in acquiring reading and writing skills. Some dyslexic adults have severe literacy problems and may be functionally illiterate.
  • Where literacy has been mastered, residual problems generally remain such as erratic spelling, difficulty extracting the sense from written material, difficulty with unfamiliar words, an inability to scan or skim text.
  • Particular difficulty with unfamiliar types of language such as technical terminology, acronyms.

Sequencing, Organisation and Time Management.

  • Difficulty presenting a sequence of events in a logical, structured way.
  • Incorrect sequencing of number and letter strings.
  • Tendency to misplace items; chronic disorganisation.
  • Poor time management: particular difficulties in estimating the passage of time.

Direction and Navigation.

  • Difficulty with finding the way to places or navigating the way round an unfamiliar building.

Concentration.

  • Weak listening skills, a limited attention span, problems maintaining focus.
  • A tendency to be easily distracted, inability to remain focused.

Sensory Sensitivity.

  • A heightened sensitivity to noise and visual stimuli.
  • Impaired ability to screen out background noise or movement.
  • Sensations of mental overload / switching off.

Lack of awareness.

  • Failure to realise the consequences of their speech or actions.
  • Failure to take account of body language.
  • Missing the implications of what they are told or interpreting it over-literally.

(Quoted from bdadyslexia.org.uk)

Not all of these apply to me but many of them do unfortunately; parts of Sequencing, Organisation and Time Management haunt me constantly. I still have difficulties reading clocks especially when I’m tired or stressed, which can be extremely embarrasing. Lack of awareness is also a problem in many ways, it’s not that I mean to set out to upset or unnerve people but apparently my sense of humour isn’t always appreciated, and as for facial expressions, they’re pretty meaningless to me. And that’s before we get onto the fun part about getting lost in the town centre I’ve known all my life…

If there had just been greater understanding of this when I was a child my school experinece would have been rather diffrent from the bleak depression laden black-hole of bullying that it was, and wouldn’t that have been nice.

 

New Year’s Resolutions

Finish all those drawings, paintings whatever you started…

Seriously, its like I’m drowning in them. I start things and then part way through I get way laid by something else and I never quite get back to them, and it’s building up a little and getting in the way.

I’ve started as I mean to go on with this little piece. I’ve actually been trying to do something nice with this rat skull that I found ages ago for a while and not really got any where, but this time I think I’ve suceeded…

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