Friday, 22 April 2011

Easter Eveready

It's Flashlight Friday again and today Easter Friday too. In keeping with the holiday I picked this nice retro red Eveready out of the vault  to share.  It's color says "festive" to me. 
 It's stamped Made in Hong Kong and is made of anodized aluminum.
Easter well wishes to all!

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

In Memory of a Fine Hunter

This past weekend my good friend Gerry Todd died after a few months bravely battling an illness in the hospital.  This morning I have been walking around the house, reflecting on our loss. Close to the end of his life his heavily medicated condition was causing him to hallucinate and he imagined flocks of geese flying through his hospital room. Gerry lived to walk in the forest and paddle a canoe on the water. He was as great a hunter as any. 
Gerry hunted and found meaning and was not afraid to walk an unbroken path in life.  The life of a hunter can be a difficult one at times but well worth the effort for those that have the vision to open themselves to the experience.
The images you see below...
A small canoe paddle
Some bone and feathers
And my rocking chair and snowshoes with arrows sitting in the morning sunlight....
These are things I think about when I think about the loss of my good friend.
Gerry you will always be remembered when ever the wind blows or the birds call...
Gone but not forgotten....


Friday, 15 April 2011

Eveready 61

In celebration of my second Flashlight Friday here is a classic from the collection.
This Eveready red swivel head lantern is circa 1970.
It was powered by either a large 6 volt battery or 4 D cells.

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Billy up the fire

Yesterday was cold and damp...
So I did what I always do when I need to warm the body and spirit....
I made a hot cup of tea.
There's something about the ritual of boiling water and soaking tea leaves in it that I find comforting. 
When I'm out in the bush I carry a small tin cup for my tea.  I will often stop and make a fire for  tea and then take a moment to sit with this warm drink and enjoy the day. 
 Similar traditions exist elsewhere too. In Australia they call this kind of 
bush tea "Billy Tea" and 
"Billy up the fire"  means put on the kettle.
Coffee or tea, a warm drink is a wonderful tonic for the soul.



Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Look Deer!

People have been known to put all kinds of things on their lawns.  
These "life like" deer are
a selection of wildlife I encountered on my way to town today.



Monday, 11 April 2011

Coleman Lights

It's been overcast and raining hard for a few days now. Last night the thunder and lightning put on quite a show. One of the dogs who is afraid of lightning slept at the side of my bed for comfort. 
This morning it's still overcast but at least the rain has eased up.
In an effort to eliminate some of the "gloom" the weather has been causing I thought I should bring out some of my Coleman Lamps.

W.C. Coleman was a typerwriter salesman with poor eyesight but business vision. In the early 1900's he started producing lamps which would develop into the type of "pressure lamp" 
that you see below in the 1930's. This type of lamp became the standard 
lamp outdoorsmen would 
use for decades and is 
still produced and popular today. They are bright, portable and dependable.

 Today clubs of collectors get together to light their lamps and share information on old lantern restoration.

Coleman Lantern collectors are a special breed .....
(this link is to a youtube video of an especially odd one)


Sunday, 10 April 2011

An exercise in discipline and meaning

It's been called by some "a truly magnificent act of boredom".
Others see it as a stress relief 
and some just as a creative storage technique...
But if you look deep into this magic ball of meaninglessness you will see the makings of a hunter.

Pictured below is my rubber band ball sitting beside a five pin bowling ball
 to give you a sense of scale. 
This ball has taken me eighteen years to make.
It's built entirely out of rubber bands I have collected from my store bought vegetables.

If you want to learn how to hunt , this is a great place to start.....
"Look deep into the ball, deep, deep and tell me what you see?"


Saturday, 9 April 2011

Spring is here

Spring in Canada is a time when you start to notice more animals out in the forest. A lot were there all winter long but were held up in sheltered foraging areas, now free to range farther for food unencumbered by snow. Some animals that are migratory like ducks and geese return home from more southern climates to nest and breed.

Two days ago while driving into town I saw three juvenile "jake" turkeys running along side of the highway, stretching their feet (and their luck).  Nightly when I take the dogs out I  hear flocks     of  geese flying overhead in the dark under the stars returning north.

Heres a decorative tray made by a Chicago company called Multi Products     
that celebrates the ducks back in the marshes. It shows two ring neck ducks flying over cattails and waterlilies. Made from a weird wood product called SYROCO (actually a compression molded sawdust,  wax and resin mixture) it was used for cheaply making items like picture frames and figurines back in the 1930's and 1940's by this company for a hand crafted look for the every man at an affordable price.


Friday, 8 April 2011

Flashlight Friday

 "Flashlight Friday" is here! A dedicated day to post about all that is "Flashlight". Weekly I will choose a flashlight or flashlight related item from my collection to feature for all my "flashlight followers".
Todays selection is a Rayovac Sportsman. This shiny vintage light was made circa 1965 and features a miners head (octagonal to prevent rolling), and ring hanger. It takes 3 D cell batteries. 
Although our collection is extensive with items dating back to the 1930's we are always looking for donations.


Thursday, 7 April 2011

Heaven on earth?

Along time ago, in an era before "Google earth",  men travelled the country taking aerial photographs of rural farm properties and then sent unsolicited door to door salesmen to these properties to sell land owners these images. Often these pictures were hand tinted to make them look like paintings. Proud residents would display these "works of art" in their homes.

Yesterday I bought this wonderful "artwork" to display in my home. If you look close you can see a dog in the dog pen at the back of the yard and clean laundry on a clothes line blowing in the wind. What a lovely suburban home, complete with picture window, two car garage and of course in ground swimming pool. The house is plunked down in the middle of a sanitized country field flanked on one side by a clean slab of country highway. How idyllic! The surreal colours you see are because this black and white photograph has been hand tinted with Marshall watercolors. The only thing near natural about this picture is the real oak frame that embraces it.


Wednesday, 6 April 2011

"Old Timer"

I'd like you to meet an "Old Timer". It's a pen knife that sits on my kitchen table in a sugar bowl when it's not in my pocket. I remember first finding this knife at a garage sale and feeling the desire to carry it with me for utility. Pen knives first appeared as tools for fashioning Quill Pens. They were originally one piece, thinner and didn't fold but morphed into what you see here over time. In early American history they were often referred to as Barlow knives and were affordable and common. These knives get mention in Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn and Barlow even produced a Mark Twain version of the knife.

Last week the dogs tracked a thorn into the house and with my luck I stepped on it, embedding it deep into the bottom of my foot. Without hesitation out came "Old Timer" to assist in me digging out the sliver. A sharp pen knife can cut string, peel an orange, skin a rabbit and open the mail.  Carrying a pen knife is as much about utility as it is about tradition. You should try it some time.


Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Wisdom on Wood

Cedar novelty plaques are an undiscovered source of wisdom and wit. They became popular travel souvenirs after World War Two when gas rationing was eliminated and road trip vacations were common. Today often dismissed as tacky kitsch, people could learn a lot if they gave this "low brow logic" half a chance. Too these mementoes are often real pieces of Folk Art that are just asking to be collected and cherished.


Monday, 4 April 2011

"What I Wore"

Flashlights and Arrows is less than two weeks old and has been quite a learning experience for me. Prior to starting on this adventure I didn't really know what a blog was or how one worked... I haven't seen many blogs, so I have just been designing this site from scratch. So far I have encountered a few interesting problems that are slowly working themselves out. One is the fact that my original  intention was to create a dialogue that was as much about experience as it is about objects...this I think will work itself out over time. Another relates to my lack of sophistication when it comes to the computer...I think this too will work itself out in time.

Today is a blustery day outside. It's overcast and raining. I have already lost electricity once -this happens often where I live....very isolated and rural. This morning I have had to adjust my blogging plans because I have been photographing my collections on a white table by the window and today the light is very poor. When I am done with this post I am going to have a look in the shop for materials to make a light tent so I won't need to check the forecast before preparing to post.

The image above is a typical chain store catalogue page from the 50's with a nice selection of outdoor items. When the weather improves I may revisit this image with some examples of some of  my own vintage gear .

I titled this post "What I Wore" because I do often wear clothes that seem to have come out of a 50's ad like the one above (albeit very well worn, faded, and sometimes patched)  and also because "What I Wore" seems a common theme out there in the blogosphere.  I doubt though if my idea of fashion is shared by many.


Sunday, 3 April 2011

Word is Out

This morning I was surprised to find that Flashlights and Arrows was mentioned and reviewed by another blog called Tea & Chickadees.  How wonderful to be noticed! 

Saturday, 2 April 2011

The Library is open

Today I built a Library into this blog to archive some of my favourite books and feature their covers. What better title to start off with  than Robin Hood. From time to time I may take a title out of the Library and offer  it as a "Book Club" title to my followers. Interested followers can read the title on their own and then offer up their own comments. If this idea appeals to you then let me know.


Friday, 1 April 2011

Night and Day

Years ago I developed a fascination with old flashlights. To my mind they represent the perfect blend of form versus function. Models from the 1930's onward were often given rugged names like Hunter, Sportsman, and Captain.  Having a sturdy flashlight to see with when it's dark at night is not only handy but a comfort too.