Welcome

Hello and welcome to the Wirral Bonsai Society Blog - an ongoing diary & newsletter highlighting the adventures of the society & its members

Society Diary-We meet at 8pm every 2nd Wednesday of the month at the RAFA club in Oxton (CH43 1UU).

  • 13th January
  • 10th February
  • 14th February Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 28th February Workshop - Gordale
  • 9th March - Monthly meeting - Topic TBC
  • 13th March Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 27th March Workshop - Gordale
  • 13th April - Demonstration - Andy H
  • 17th April Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 24th April Workshop - Gordale
  • 8th May Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 11th May- Monthly meeting - Topic TBC
  • 29th May Workshop - Gordale
  • 4-5th June WBS Flowering Bonsai Show - Port Sunlight GC
  • 8th June - WBS Member trees critique
  • 12th June Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 26th June Workshop - Gordale
  • 10th July Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 13th July- Monthly meeting - Topic TBC
  • 31st July Workshop - Gordale
  • 10th August- WBS Show tree selection
  • 13-14th August - Wirral Flower Show
  • 20th August - Japan Day, Liverpool
  • 27-29th August WBS Annual Show - Gordale
  • 14th September- Monthly meeting - Topic TBC
  • 11th September Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 25th September Workshop - Gordale
  • 9th October Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 12th October- Monthly meeting - Topic TBC
  • 30th October Workshop - Gordale
  • 9th November- Monthly meeting - Topic TBC
  • 13th November Workshop - Port Sunlight GC
  • 26-27th November - Potter Workshop with David Jones (Walsall Studio Ceramics)
  • 27th November Workshop - Gordale
  • 14th December - Club Party

Membership

New members are always welcome, just come along to one of our monthly meetings at the RAFA club. You can even 'try us out' for a few months before you decide on joining as an official member. The meetings are informal (there's a bar!) and the club members are (mostly) friendly, approachable and happy to pass on guidance and information to anybody interested in bonsai- whatever your level of experience.

Friday, 22 June 2007

Gordale workshop -7th & 8th July

I'm sure all members need no reminder that there is a Club Workshop being held at Gordale Garden center on the weekend of the 7th/8th of July.
This is the same weekend that Gordale have their 'Great Fun Days' so there will be plenty of things for other members of the family to enjoy while you bend, pluck and burn!!


Check out the website for more info. and bear in mind you can always go on the bouncy slide and have your face painted if you need a distraction from your trees!!

(Les -resist the temptation to go for the geisha look!!!)
-

Thursday, 14 June 2007

Tree of the Month- June

Well done to Lee who was awarded TotM for this beautiful Satsuki Azalea.
Lee, you should view it as a small consolation for being forced to leave your loyal work colleagues and go 'on the sick' again!!!!
-


-

Lucky ****!

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Les 'does' Japan


Following Les's recent freebee trip to Australia, his latest junket was to Japan.
By way of a taster for his talk at our meeting in September a brief description of the trip is found below.

Ladies & Gentlemen,.... I give you Les....

The trip was organised by Yoshihiro Nakamizu of J-bonsai.com who took me to the gardens of Mr Kimura and Mr Kobayashi, as well as the following nurseries-
Mausei-en owned by Mr Saburo Kato
Toju-en, Mr Hamano teacher of Mr Kimura
Fuyo-en, Mr Takeyama, chair of Nippon Bonsai Association
Seiko-en, Mr Yamada
Yorozu-en, Mr Fukano (shohin)

Many of the nurseries (en) have been owned for generations by the same family and passed from father to son. Trees collected over 150 years ago are being tended by great grand children of the collectors.
The quality of the raw material makes our trees look like twigs in pots. Each of the gardens had high quality trees and the owners specialised in various styles, species or variety of trees, in Mr Kimuras garden you are blinded by the white deadwood and stunned by the spectacular twisting and turning trunks.
Mr Kobayashi was displaying wonderful satsuki and a wider range of trees with spectacular nebari also at this nursery is a brilliant museum displaying a number of tokonama and ancient pots and display stands.
In addition to the bonsai tour I also was lucky enough to go to Kyoto to visit temples and shrines which had spectacular gardens, even travelling through Tokyo and the suburbs you see outstanding garden trees that have been styled and refined to a high standard.

Les Storey

Here are a few pictures to wet the appetite.
-
Les with.......well, you know who it is!!
-

Les and a shohin he discovered!..... the perspectives a little strange, don't you think!

Nice!!

.....makes you want to put a torch to your own collection!

A view of Yorozu-en. The nursery where Les found his three new trees.

Stunning pine


Culture, S & M show, unusual training technique or an attempt to 'feel' what its like to be a tree????
---

So, be sure not to miss Septembers meeting as its bound to be enlightening. (I believe Les is already booked in for a mini tour of UK bonsai clubs.)

But before you attend hide all matches and lighter fluids at home, as you might feel different about your own collection afterwards.


June's meeting- Workshop

Accents n' Ale- A taste of life at Wirral Bonsai.
-

.....sorry, it'll never make a Mame.



Friday, 8 June 2007

Virtually June- Adding foliage 2

Continuing with the theme of adding foliage to a tree via cut and paste (as per May's tip) you can also use this method between different pictures!
If you select a section you want to copy from one picture, copy it (Ctrl & C) then open the picture you want to add the section too & paste it. (Ctrl & V)
Simple!!

Obviously this can also be used to copy anything onto a picture, but I find it most useful when trying to match a pot to a tree. (I've built up a library of pot pictures, all nicked off potters websites/ebay etc.)

Now thats clear (?) I will show you what I think is a better way of doing it! This is a useful tool but can lead to crude 'cut outs.'

For me a better alternative for copying foliage is to use the clone stamp tool.This tool 'clones' or copies a section of your picture (the size is varied by the brush diameter) in a more subtle manner.

Actions:
1. Create a new layer within the picture (so that what your 'cloning' will be on a sheet of tracing paper over your original picture).

2.Next you click the clone stamp icon and if necessary adjust the brush size according to the size of detail you want to clone. Do this by going to the brush size indicator (top left on your horizontal tool bar) clicking the little arrow and selecting/adjusting the diameter.

3. Ensure that the sample all layers box is checked (middle of top horizontal tool bar.)

4. While holding the Alt key down, click on the area you want to clone then release Alt. (NB. The cursor will then go back to the size of the brush diameter selected.)


5. Then move to the area you want to clone to, hold the left mouse button down while moving the mouse around. Magically, the brush will apply a copy of the picture,following your movement but copying what was under the path you would have been on when you clicked Alt!!!!! (Trust me- it makes sense when you do it!!)


You can then copy anything while you hold the left button down. You can do it as many times as you like & even change the selection area by holding down the Alt key again.

Good luck!

NB. If you get real clever you can even clone between pictures, just have both pictures open and sample from one while cloning onto the other.

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Bonsai Site of the Month -June


This month's site comes from Australia and is largly dedicated to bonsai videos.

(This probably means its more for those with broadband, because if you don't it will probably take forever to download!!)

http://www.bonsaifarm.tv/content/category/4/13/37/

There is even a series of videos taken in Kimura's garden... so you might even get to see what Les should be viewing in the flesh (or is it leaf?)

Monday, 4 June 2007

Apologies....

...for the lack of input recently, I've been away daubing paint on a a recent house acquisition that I trust will become a future base for raiding yamadori from the Pyrenees. (-the family suggest that there are a few other uses!!)