Saturday, 30 August 2014

All The Things...

the volunteers of magic torch are delighted with a busy year
We have been really fortunate this year to receive support from a whole range of funders. We have loads going on over the next few months, and so we felt it was important to just stop, take a wee breath, and remind you about each of our projects individually...but yknow, also all at the same time.

13 Commonwealth Tales is supported by the Celebrate Fund, created to help communities recognise the Commonwealth Games in different ways. We've already had some storytelling days and right now the project is just finishing production on two books, 13 Commonwealth Tales, an illustrated childrens book collecting traditional stories from Commonwealth countries and Uncommon Tales, a comic in which Sir Glen Douglas Rhodes explores some of the darker folklore of the Commonwealth. Thanks to Lottery funding, limited copies of both of these books will be made available for FREE in September and October.

Time and Place is supported by Awards For All Scotland, and is sharing creative responses to Inverclyde past, present and future. Exhibitions and music created by the project will be on display in The Dutch Gable House throughout October and November.

Achi Baba is supported by Heritage Lottery Fund and will explore an important part of Inverclyde's World War One history in comic form. The comic book will be published in July 2015, on the centenary of the battle.

Alongside that, we have our own self supported project, The Battle of Largs, which has created an exhibition based on John Galt's gothic poem, using artwork from Andy Lee and woodcraft created by local social enterprise Newark Products.

And of course you can still access our kids book Wee Nasties on scribd and ibooks, and our vintage horror comic Tales of the Oak, from last year's project Tales of the Oak, supported by Heritage Lottery Fund Our Heritage.

So aye, busy times. Good times too. Probably our most action packed year since we started. It's worth noting, that all of the grants above, are under 10k, awarded through funding streams which are ideal for smaller groups. I wrote a wee blog post at the start of the year with my own thoughts about funding, and if you, or your group has an idea for projects, why not try making them happen?

Hopefully we'll see you at some of our events over the next few months.

Wednesday, 27 August 2014

13 Commonwealth Tales - Cover Reveal

With props to our artist Mhairi and our mysterious designer Black Cassidy, here's the rather sumptuous cover for our new 64 page book 13 Commonwealth Tales, supported by the Celebrate Fund.

Packed full of monsters, fair folk, superstitions and even a limerick, there's something for everyone in this journey around Commonwealth folklore, undertaken by our own questionable folk hero, Captain Kidd.

The book will be launched on Thursday September 11. If you would like to come along to the book launch on Thursday evening to hear some of the stories and enjoy a few refreshments, we have some tickets spare, simply email us with the answer to the following question...

What is the name of the spider god and King of Stories we have recently featured on our blog?

Answers to aulddunrod@gmail,com

However, don't worry, for if you miss out on Thursday, further FREE copies will be available exclusively from the Dutch Gable House during Doors Open Days on September 13th / 14th. Our two previous FREE books have been snapped up quickly and our now only available as downloads. So don't miss out!

actual photograph of Captain Kidd's famous logbook. kind of.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

13 Commonwealth Tales...Soon...

what secrets are hidden in Kidd's mysterious journal...

Tomorrow we will reveal the cover for our new book 13 Commonwealth Tales, and let you know how to get your hands on a copy before anyone else.

Be sure to check in with us on Wednesday...

Monday, 25 August 2014

Time and Place - Restorations

Magic Torch have long been fans of the band British Sea Power, and so we were absolutely delighted when they agreed to work with us on our Time and Place project to create an exhibition for The Dutch Gable House.

For this part of the project we wanted to take old footage of the town, some of which people may be familiar with, and use it to tell a slightly different story about some of what the town has lost, both positively and negatively, in the name of progress and regeneration. The main footage we have used comes from Greenock Plans Ahead, which many local history and heritage buffs will be familiar with. Primarily using a high quality version of the footage from Greenock Plans Ahead, sourced directly from Scottish Screen Archive, local historian, folk singer and general Renaissance Man, Louie Pastore, has edited the footage into something new to accompany two specially created pieces of music from British Sea Power.

The short film with exclusively recorded soundtrack, will be premiered in The Dutch Gable House in the autumn as part of an installation there. For now, here's a very brief glimpse of what to expect.

Do check out more from British Sea Power, here's just a wee taster below...

Here's a clip from the wonderful From The Sea To The Land Beyond

And here's the band's classic No Lucifer

Just a wee disclaimer though - in these increasingly exciting and polarised times in Scotland, something as straightforward as a band's name can be seen as a political statement. Well in this context, it isn't. As we've said before, Torch involve a broad mix of folks, from archivists to anarchists, atheists to devout catholics and Yes supporters and those who say No Thanks. We'll all be voting in our own ways, with our own hopes in September, and so the reason we've involved the band British Sea Power, is because we really like their music. Just so everyone's clear. Sheesh.

Monday, 18 August 2014

13 Commonwealth Tales - Sketchbook Nightmares

Chickcharney! Chickcharney attack!
A few wee glimpses into Mhairi's sketchbook for 13 Commonwealth Tales. Mhairi will be bringing her sketchbook along to our book launch and Doors Open Day if you want to see how the book artwork all came together...or...yknow...get freaked out...

Monday, 11 August 2014

Time and Place

Magic Torch are pleased to announce that we have been successful in receiving £8900 support from Awards For All Scotland for our project Time and Place. This project will explore creative responses to the past and future of Inverclyde, using a variety of media. Local people will be involved in a range of creative activities and the project will culminate in a month long exhibition in The Dutch Gable House. Elements of the project include...

Snapshots of yesterday ; Acclaimed photographer Alastair Cook will run a community workshop on the art of Victorian collodion photography, in which local volunteers will create their own photographs. Alastair will also curate a selection of portrait photos for the final exhibition, contrasting older photos with the new ones created.

Restorations (Greenock Plans Ahead) : A Greenock corporation film made in the 1950s to show post war reinvention and investment opportunities will be re-edited and a brand new contemporary soundtrack provided by award winning band British Sea Power.

Postcards from tomorrow : Community groups and schools will be invited to send postcards describing or illustrating life in the area in 20, 50, 100 or 200 years time.

What You Leave Behind : Through a series of community workshops, a new science fiction comic strip set in the Inverclyde of the future will be created and published digitally.

The project and associated exhibitions will be running throughout September and October and we'll be sharing more details on each of the projects soon. Meantime, here's a wee teaser...