Have you got a favourite painting? Mine is ‘A Portrait of the Countess Golovine’ painted by Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun, sometime around 1797. It is, unsurprisingly, a portrait of Countess Varvara Nikolaevna Golovine, a talented musician and artist from Russia. Elisabeth and the Countess became great friends and I love the way the Countess is smiling in the portrait, with a red shawl draped around her shoulders and her dark curly hair swept up in behind a scarf. The painting belongs to the Barber Institute of Fine Arts, Birmingham, which is one of my favourite galleries.
I love going to art galleries and looking at paintings, but at first I found it quite a daunting thing to do. Have you ever been to an art gallery and not known where to start? Or heard art critics talking about symbolism, composition and form but not understood? Sometimes looking at art can sound difficult, and talking about it can be a whole other language!
But looking at art doesn’t have to be complicated. Things like symbolism, where objects in paintings are used to represent something that’s happening, like a skull symbolising death, can be important and the composition, or the way things in the painting are arranged, can tell us a lot about the artist and why the painted what they did.
Until 3 billion years ago, Mars was a wet planet much like Earth. It had land, an extensive atmosphere and an ocean that covered two thirds of the northern hemisphere as well as smaller bodies of water. But significant climate change caused the water and atmosphere to boil away, leaving Mars a dry and arid planet. Or so we thought… then came the news from Nasa – Water found on Mars!
It has been reported that a computer program has passed the famous Turing Test by pretending to be a 13-year-old Ukrainian boy called Eugene Goostman. But just what is the Turing Test and why is this development so interesting? Sam investigates.
Tuesday 26th of November
Today was match day! England v Italy.
The match was at Telford Stadium so we had a 50 mile journey from St. Georges Park to get there.
It was a rather cold day to be outside but it wasn’t shown by any of the excited school children that flooded the ground, ready to watch the game. Before the match began outside the stadium, Continental Tyres were running a Conti Fan Zone. A variety of football activities were being run for the energetic children.
I had a go at measuring the speed of my kick. On my first go I fluffed it and didn’t even hit the target (that’s why I play in goal!) but on my second go I managed to get 29mph which was quite good.
I had to do a piece to camera about what went on before the match and interviewed two Birmingham City Ladies who were taking part in the activities.
Me and my cameraman David positioned ourselves by the team dugouts, ready and waiting for kick off. When the game finally kicked off it was a fast, exciting game.
Both teams were equal and no team was particularly dominant. The England captain, defender Leah Williamson was a stand out player as she was clearly comfortable on the ball and lead the team with ease.
At half time it was 0-0. For the second half me and David retreated to the press box, due to the days coldness, where Simon and Dad had been watching the game and famous footballer spotting.
I had to do some reporting to the camera at half time about how I thought the match was going. The second half was just as gripping and as nail-biting as the first. Unfortunately England conceded an untimely goal off a deflection. England continued to battle throughout the second half and continuously tried to win themselves back a goal, they came staggeringly close to scoring again but unluckily when the final whistle blew, Italy won 1-0.
The score didn’t reflect the game, a draw would have connoted the game more suitably. After the game, I got the chance to ask Lois Fidler a question at the after game press conference.
Following the press conference I then got the opportunity to interview the current England Ladies Manager, Brent Hills, who was lovely and chatty, I still can’t believe I got the chance to interview him.
I was also fortunate enough to be able to interview Alex Scott, England international, Dave Sampson, Bristol Academy Ladies Manager and four of the Under 17 girls, Leah Williamson, Keira Walsh, Chloe Kelly and Molly Rouse.
I was overwhelmed by the people I got the chance to talk to about the game. As the day came to a close it was time for us to go back to St. Georges Park after a long, jam-packed, thrilling day.