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 Post subject: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Mon Jan 01, 2018 12:11 pm 
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Location: Portsmouth
A new balloon project starting on January 2nd 2018, I will be taking a virtual journey around the world visiting a different country each week.


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 Post subject: Re: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:33 pm 
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It's a Balloon World After All - France

Bonjour and welcome along to my brand new balloon challenge for 2018. For this project I am going to be making a virtual journey around the world visiting a different country each week. For my first week I am starting off fairly local to my home country by visiting our neighbours, France.

France is really well known for its fine dining and wine so I felt I needed to include some of these in my picture, as you can see I have the grapes which eventually get turned into wine plus I have included the croissant and baguette. The little man I have made is not wearing the traditional national dress of France, and I must confess that during my many visits to France I have never seen anyone wearing the stereotypical stripy jumper while riding a bicycle, it is however what many people think of when they imagine a Frenchman so that is what I did.

Finally I had to include one of the most famous landmarks in all of France, the Eiffel Tower, This marvel of engineering stands in the centre of Paris and has dominated the skyline for 130 years. I made my Eiffel Tower in red so that the complete picture includes the 3 colours from the French flag.

Next week I will be travelling a bit further from from my home to a country that is home to the Volcano Rabbit.

http://www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/balloonworld/


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 Post subject: Re: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Mon Jan 08, 2018 11:37 pm 
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IT'S A BALLOON WORLD AFTER ALL - MEXICO

Buenas tardes a todos, I hope you are all well, This week we are taking a look at Mexico, or as it is officially known The United Mexican States. Mexico has a diverse landscape of mountains, deserts, jungles plus some wonderful beaches on the Pacific and Gulf coasts.

One of my favourite traditions is the Mexican holiday of the Day of the Dead, A festival to remember and pray for friends and family members who have died and to help them with their spiritual journey, to honour this event I have included my Day of the Dead Skull.

I have always imagined the food in Mexico to be full of flavour and colour, I know that Corn is a major ingredient however I felt that the Chilli was an iconic Mexican food ingredient which I had to include. The Guitar represents the amazing music of the country including the well known Mariachi bands, and with over 1000 different types of Cactus found in the country I felt that a Cactus would be perfect.

This week my little balloon man is wearing his Sombrero, the perfect hat to keep him cool and shaded in the intense Mexican heat. Next week I am heading back to Europe to the home of the Grandiosa frozen pizza.

Hasta la próxima semana, Adiós

http://www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/balloonworld/2018/1/5/its-a-balloon-world-after-all-mexico


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 Post subject: Re: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Tue Jan 16, 2018 12:45 pm 
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It's A Balloon World After All - Norway

Hei alle, hvordan har du det? This week I am taking a look at one of my favourite places in the world, it is Norway. Norway is a country full of fascinating history and culture, it is also one of the most beautiful places in the world.

The main thing I wanted to include was a Norwegian troll, here I have made a cave troll, very different from the current popular troll seen in the movie and as toys as those originate from Denmark. Norwegian trolls date back thousands of years and come in all shapes and sizes, they are often dim witted and slow but can sometimes look a bit like human beings too. These days Trolls are described as dangerous and they should be avoided.

Tourism has become a huge business in recent years and part of this is due to the Whale watching trips that take place throughout the year. There are 21 different species of Whale that visit the waters of Norway from Dolphins and Orca to Blue Whales and Humpbacks. As you can imagine fishing is also a major part of the cuisine with Salmon, herring, trout and cod being the main catch.

The history of Norway is dominated by the Vikings, the Viking age started in the year 793 and Viking settlements could be found all across Scandinavia. I have included a viking shield in my picture along with the whale and the school of fish.

Finally my Norwegian lady is wearing the traditional Bunad, an elaborate costume with embroidery, typically it is worn with scarves, shawls and hand-made silver or gold jewelry known as sølje.

Next week I am heading somewhere much warmer than Norway, it will be my first African country and is the worlds largest exporter of Sardines.

http://www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/balloonworld/2018/1/13/its-a-balloon-world-after-all-norway


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 Post subject: Re: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Wed Jan 24, 2018 12:56 pm 
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It's a Balloon World After All - Morocco

Ssalamū 'lekum, This week I am taking a virtual trip to my first African country, it is Morocco, I have never been to Morocco so it has been very interesting researching it for the project.

The first things I made for my photo were the moroccan slippers, when I started researching the country these were one of the first things I discovered and felt I really wanted to have a go at making them. In real life these slippers are often made of leather or covered in fine embroidery and decoration but I have gone for a plain pair.

The next thing I made was a Moroccan lamp, I have made mine to have brightly coloured glass, these are often highly decorated and the sides have elaborate shapes and patterns cut into them. The Ship of the desert was an obvious choice and in Morocco the camels are mostly dromedaries (one humped) and are usually owned and domesticated to a certain degree.

The Tower I have made is based on the tower from the largest Mosque in Marrakesh, the Koutoubia Mosque. This mosque has been standing for well over 800 years and stands at about 77 metres high.

Lastly I have my Moroccan man, when I first started to create my little balloon figures I knew I wanted to make a Fez and this led to a discussion about the origin of this well known hat. I knew it was named after a place and it soon became clear that it is named after the City of Fez in Morocco.

Next week I am off to a country whose capital city is home to over 100 Sushi restaurants making it the city with the most sushi restaurants per capita after Tokyo and NYC, it also hosts a rollerblading party every Tuesday night.

http://www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/balloonworld/


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 Post subject: Re: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Wed Jan 31, 2018 7:46 pm 
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It's a Balloon World After All - Israel

Shalom, Mah Ha’Inyanim? This week I am in the country of Israel, the land of milk and honey.

The star of David was something I just had to make, I think it was actually my friend Danny who suggested I make this for when I visited Israel and it is lucky that the Star of David is such an easy shape to make with balloons, all it took were 2 balloons, each one with 3 simple twists in them.

The next thing I wanted to make was a menorah, a sacred candelabrum with between 5 and 9 branches depending on what it is used for, this one is a 7 branched menorah and should originally be made out of solid gold.
According to the Times of Israel "Becoming not only Judaism’s oldest symbol, but also the Western world’s oldest continuously used religious symbol, the menorah once stood in the Holy Temple of Jerusalem. The seven-branched candelabrum (nine-branched for Hanukkah) has been a source of fascination and illumination for Jews, Samaritans, Christians and also Freemasons for three millennia."

Below the menorah I have made a diamond, Israel is one of the world's three major centers for polished diamonds, diamond cutting is a traditional Jewish craft going back centuries. At the top left of the picture I have created a balloon version of one of the most familiar buildings in Israel, The Dome of the Rock is an Islamic shrine located on the Temple Mount in the city of Jerusalem. I am not really a religious person however I am always fascinated by religious sites like this.

Last but not least we have my little Rabbi, He actually came about by accident, I was trying to make a different character and then suddenly this little chap appeared, a very happy accident.

Well that is it for Israel, I found it a difficult country to research and I really didn't want to get anything wrong so apologies if I have made any mistakes with this country.

Next week I am off to a land made up of over 6,800 islands.

http://www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/balloonworld/


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 Post subject: Re: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 12:48 am 
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It's a Balloon World After All - Japan

Konnichiwa, O-genki desu ka,

Hello everyone, This week I am having a look at Japan, the land of the rising sun. I have always wanted to go to Japan, I am sure I will do one day.

So first off I wanted to recreate the Japanese Torii, this is a type of gate that is found at the entrance or within a Shinto shrine, it marks the transition from the profane to sacred. Personally I think the most famous Torii is the Itsukushima Shrine, found in the city of Hatsukaichi in Hiroshima Prefecture, at high tide it appears to float on the water.

I love the architecture of Japan, there is something so wonderful about the traditional Japanese designs and I just had to include an element from the Japanese Rock garden (or Zen Garden). Rocks are an important part of the Japanese garden and as you can see I have created a small pile of balloon rocks.

Every year in spring an incredible natural event sweeps its was across Japan, starting in the far south of the country the cherry trees come to life with their amazing pink blossom, slowly moving north over the spring months the cherry blossoms attract thousands of people to partake in hanami, which literally translates as “looking as flowers” and refers to flower appreciation picnics under the trees.

The folding hand fan was invented in Japan and may date back to the 6th century, here I have made a hand fan, they would typically be made from Japanese cypress and paper or silk. Finally I felt I had to make a Geisha, a traditional Japanese female entertainer who would act as a hostess. They have many skills including Japanese classical music and traditional dance, witty games and conversation. I always imagine them performing the Japanese Tea ceremony.

I do hope you are enjoying my project, do you have a country you would like to see? Let me know by commenting on this post, it would be great to hear some suggestions. Until next week, sayōnara.


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 Post subject: Re: It's a Balloon World After All
PostPosted: Tue Feb 13, 2018 3:10 pm 
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It's a Balloon World After All - India

नमस्ते ।
Hello everyone, I am certainly covering some miles in my virtual journey around the world, If I was actually doing this journey then I would already be over 25000 miles of travelling. This week my virtual journey is taking me to the very colourful country of India. (I must stress here, I am not actually visiting these countries, this is a virtual journey around the world)

India is such a diverse country with many different cultures I found it hard to pin down and choose the items to make from balloons, Items which I thought represented this beautiful country. I first started by making one of the most sacred animals in the country, the Cow, Worshiped by millions of Hindus across the country, the Cow provides life sustaining milk and therefore is seen as a maternal figure, a caretaker of her people. The cow is a symbol of the divine bounty of earth.

Another sacred animal is the Snake and I could not resist making a snake in a basket, Snake charming has been a form of performance in India for hundreds of years and although it is still practiced today Snake charming has become less and less common on the streets of India.

The musical instrument that looks a bit like a long guitar is called a Sitar. it was first developed in the 7th century and seems to be a very complex instrument with either 18, 19, 20, or 21 strings (and I struggle to play my 4 string ukulele).

One of the most famous sights of India is of course the Taj Mahal, Situated in Agra, this 365 year old mausoleum stands on the banks of the Yamuna river and was built by the Mughal emperor, Shah Jahan, to house the tomb of his favourite wife, Mumtaz Mahal.

Finally I have my little Indian princess in her Saree with the Bindi decoration on her forehead.

Next week I am staying in the exotic far east so until then, जल्दी मिलेंगे ।
http://www.bowtieballoonguy.co.uk/balloonworld/


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