148. CD Splinters

I have cracked CDs before because I was really curious about how far they could be bent and how they would finally crack. However, when I decided to do that again to an old CD which was to be thrown away I wasn't at all prepared for such an explosion. Apparently, CDs of different brands behave differently when threatened in such a way. They all fight back, but this one delivered a final blow at me much stronger than others. But the splinters it left looked interesting:

And I love how they shimmer! :)

On a side note: Today, 150 years ago, Alvan Graham Clark discovered the second white darf in the history of astronomy: Sirius B (white dot in the lower left quadrant of the picture), the tiny companion of the brightest star in our night sky, Sirius A.

(photo taken by the NASA and ESA's Hubble Space Telescope)


147. Music Monday #4

Oh dear, it looks like last week's music project was too difficult to figure out after all. Well, maybe I'll just post the solution in a comment... :)

For the one today, I'll give a little hint: It's also (rather strongly) related to a movie...

Just a quick sketch and watercolours. - I had originally thought of something very different for today but that would have required a lot more time and I was at home for about 3 hours total today. Maybe next week.


146. Book Sculpture Star

It worked, finally! This is the project I've been struggling with for days:

Another book that was of no real use anymore (a several years old workshop programme) got put to a new use: decoration. Here's a side view of it:

And this is its story: My mother used to make such book sculptures a while ago and I spent quite some time trying to figure out how I could make one that would look like a star. I did, eventually, and folded approximately 100 sheets (200 pages - that took a few hours...), only to find that the glued spine was impossible to bend. I got only half a circle. :(
Some tips from my mother (and the reassurance that she had somehow made it work before - even with glued spines), made me try again and I sat down with a knife to scrape a part of the glue off - as much as possible without the pages falling off - and scratch thin fissures into it, hoping it would bend then.
The result was better than before but still not a proper circle. I had to use a lot of glue and fixate it over night so it would stay in shape. Now it does and I'm quite amazed at the result! Two days ago, I really couldn't imagine it to ever look like this. :)


145. Snow Cake Star

Unbelievable: We finally got the first real snow this winter! So I had to abandon my studies and go out for a bit.

I went up my favourite mountain - well, depending on what you are used to it could be called 'mountain' or 'hill', but where I live people call it a mountain. I was a little late so the light started to fade before I reached the top; and though I had already made it down this mountain in the dark before, I didn't want to try it again with a ground slippery from snow and (just-about-to-become-ice-)mud. Fortunately, I passed by this beautiful spot just below the top and was amazed to find it still barely touched.

(It's usually a really nice viewpoint but today there wasn't much to be viewed as the air was thick with grey mist.)

I used the snow on the stone table to make a star (almost killing my fingers in the process):

Here's how passers-by might see it from the path just above that viewpoint:

Only then did I realise that it looked very much like a cake - a Snow Cake (beautiful film, by the way). I didn't eat it, though - found myself some other snow to eat.^^


144. Clothes Peg Star

Hooray... Once again, I wasted an entire evening on a project which didn't work out. Honestly, I'm not very happy with all this at the moment. Here's a poor substitute star of clothes pegs I stuck together:


143 Rubber Star

Have you ever cut a rubber/eraser? Well, it probably depends on the type, but it generally is very amazing - at least to someone like me who likes to fiddle around with things.


This one has a long history, it must be ancient, really. And one can see the holes where we used to stick the pens in. (As I found out when cutting it: In some of them there're even pieces of lead left that broke off.

I think the star's points will break off rather soon when it's used, but nevermind. I thought it was a good way to honour such an old and faithfull companion. :)


141. A Piece of Night Sky

As there is no beautiful night sky to be seen outside (and I really could use some of that right now), I had to make my own:

Black piece of paper with tiny holes poked into it in front of my living room lamp. It's the "Random Winter Night Constellation".


140. Music Monday #3

Still raining - inside and outside.
I found a very appropriate music project for this situation. This one is a little harder to figure out, I suppose (unless, of course, one knows the song well^^). But it's also one I had on my mind a lot during the first weeks of my year of stars (though it wasn't raining, then).


139. Coloured Dots

Oh dear. I just had a look at the past couple of weeks and realised that there's hardly any colour in the stars... Here's an attempt at changing that - though it does feel a little pathetic right now...

138. Snow Flake Star

Late again...
Well, I tried, it didn't work, I was frustrated - and forgot about it until I had just gone to bed. Since I refused to get up again, I had to finish it today, which (I think) makes it the first star that is actually late...

This one expresses my hope for at least one day of snow this winter. It did snow a little yesterday morning - at least about 10 meters above ground. Upon reaching the ground it all turned to water. That's why I decided to make my own snow out of paper.


137. Repair Work

Motivation: 0.5%
Material: beautiful star I got for Christmas, made of a thick kind of transpaprent paper
Problem: kept falling apart
Solution: 'remake' with glue

136. Howling at the Star

Last night, I had invited some friends over to play our favourite werewolf game. I almost forgot to make a star... When everybody had left, I convinced myself to sit down and make some kind of wolf star even though it was already quite late - and then I realised that my internet connection had decided to break down. So, this post is a little late again, but that gave me the time to darken the background of the picture which made it look a lot better:


135. Star Chocolates

I finally wanted to make use of some leftover marzipan. Since I also had a lot of chocolate coating, this was the result:

I used silicone moulds to make these - a Christmas gift from my sister. :)


134. Card House Centre Star

Building a house of cards with three triangles at the bottom will create a star in the centre: emphasised here with a little help from my computer - and given a more beautiful look with a little help from my friend. :)

La lalala la lala... I'll get by... lala lala la


133. Music Monday #2

Here's the next song - one that is very dear to me. Again, it's rather simple to recognise, but can someone figure out which particular part of the lyrics this is referring to?

Let me tell you that in case you don't know the lyrics by heart they're well worth checking out!


132. Book Safe

Generally speaking, I'm a great lover of books, so destroying one is not something that would come naturally to me. However, there really are some good-for-nothing books out there - and it was rather a delight to let my fury out at this one. At least it was creative destruction:

I made it through 310 pages, then my fingers hurt so badly I decided it was enough. Finally, I've got my own book safe! :)

131. Book Page Stars

I began working on a star today but didn't finish. Fortunately, the process already produced quite a few stars:

The final result will hopefully be completed tomorrow.


130. Laugenstangen Not-Quite-Star

Wow, what a long, long night that was. So this post is a little late because I just fell into bed the moment I got home. Here's a star out of what might be called 'pretzel sticks' in English (they're 'Laugenstangen' - apparently a very German kind of bread), that I backed for a party yesterday:

Alright, while this image does not strike me as particularly star-like, it really was all I could manage - and that's all there is to it.


129. Star Notes

A lot of music-making today, so I've got a musical star:

Ever since I found out about Bach's way of inserting his name into his music (by playing the notes 'b', 'a', 'c' 'h' - which only works with the German names) I was very annoyed by the fact that only two of my name's letters are also notes. That's when I developed my own way to expand the names of notes to include the whole alphabet (which basically ends in most of the notes having two names^^). For the sake of simplicity and structure I used the English name (means: 'b' instead of 'h' for those used to the German ones).

So this is what 'star' might sound like in Music:


128. Multilingual Star

I've long since wanted to make a calligram. Now, here it is:

My lesson for today: Talk, talk, talk! Just talk to people.

I might add a list of the corresponding languages, soon. But it will require many different fonts - that's just too much for now.

Update 2012-01-12:
These are the languages (from top to bottom, left to right - mostly):

Stern – German
כוכב – Hebrew (read right to left! pronunciation: kochav)
csillag – Hungarian
tähti – Finnish
gwiazda – Polish
estrella – Spanish
stjärna – Swedish
αστέρι – Greek (pronunciation: asteri)
ster – Afrikaans, Dutch
stea – Romanian
ستاره – Persian/Farsi (Pronunciation required!)
hotohke – Cheyenne
tauraruwar – Hausa (spoken in several African countries)
stella – Latin, Italian
étoile – French
täht - Estonian
ดวงดาว (duang dao) – Thai
star – English
estrela – Portuguese
zvijezda – Bosnian, Croatian
stjarna – Icelandic
Yıldız - Turkish
seren – Welsh
stelo – Esperanto
nyota – Swahili
réalta – Irish/Gaeilge
तारा (tara) – Hindi
bituin – Tagalog/Fillipino
stjerne – Danish, Norwegian
звезда – Russian, Bulgarian, Serbian, Macedonian? (pronunciation: zwezda/swesda)
hvězda – Czech
星 (hoshi) – Japanese
星 (xīng) – Chinese
별(byul) – Korean

If anybody knows the word 'star' in any other language or has a correction to those in here, please just let me know! I'm happy to learn!^^


127. Left-Handedly Ripped Paper Star

Very simple cause I'm very tired:

But I tried to make it at least a tiny bit of a challenge and used my left hand to make this (it's not exactly easy to rip a star out of paper using only one hand, so yes, I did use both... you know what I mean...) - which can be considered challenging because I'm normally quite right-handed (even though I like practicing the use of my left hand. ... I feel like I wrote this here before, very recently... Can't remember... Probably my brain really is tired. OK, I'm going to shut up now.^^)

P.S.: That paper is a note I found in my letter box this evening, telling me that a package had been delivered for me at my neighbours'. So - yay! - I've finally got a new printer/scanner! That's why the paper had to be honoured. :)


126. Music Monday #1

I've long since been planning to insert a little music star project into this project. There are plenty of songs about or at least mentioning 'stars' one way or another - so I'm going to fill Mondays with music related stars now. Here is the first one - and it simply had to be the first because this song was stuck in my head during the first weeks of my Year of Stars: Whenever I thought 'star' this song would start playing in my mind; no way to stop it.

I thought I might make those Music Mondays a little quiz (although the first one is quite obvious - at least for those who know the song^^). So, who can give me artist and title of this song:

Colouring will have to wait. Long day, it's late and I really need to catch up on some quality sleep. (By the time I colour this in I might even have a scanner and thus get a proper picture of it! :D)


125. Nail Polish Stars

I've never painted anything but plain colour on my nails, so this is a rather crude first try - but I was bored and there are only so many things one can do while sitting/lying on the sofa trying to ignore the pain in one's back.

While I like practicing the use of my left hand, this was already difficult enough to paint with the right hand so I didn't paint the other nails.

However, I like this better than I thought I would and I might get back to it at some point - with some more appropriate tools than just an ancient paint brush.^^


124. Little Star Puzzle

Still sick and spending the largest part of my days in bed or on the couch - and consequently lacking energy to create much... On the bright side, though, my brain seems to start functioning properly again, so I took the chance to get back to a computer game I hadn't played in quite a while (and still the only one I did play in a really long while...), which basically consists of puzzles to solve. ('Professor Layton', anyone? Great fun!) That's where I came across a puzzle including a star, and since I solved it I'm letting it count for today's star.

Here it is in case you want to have a go at it:

It's not that hard, but if you want a little hint (if you don't: stop reading here!): You don't even need to figure out the shape in order to answer the question.^^

Have fun!


123. Mirror Star

I always knew mirrors were more than a mere device to see oneself in. Here's what a bathroom mirror cabinet may also be:

A salute to the mirror stories - happy anniversary!


122. Rubber Band Stars

I learned this a while ago:

 single star

double star

There's also a triple star, but it's not as clearly recognisable, plus the rubber bands I could find were too short for that. ;)


121. Apple Core

One cut - one star:

Quick, simple, natural, nourishing, and what have you.


120. Haematite Streak Star

Today's star is drawn with a broken piece of haematite on the tip of a pestle:

In order to identify a mineral's streak colour one has to scratch it over an unvarnished piece of ceramic. The interesting thing about a haematite is that while the stone is of a dark grey colour with a distinc metallic shine to it, its streak is brown or even red - hence one of its (many) German names 'Blutstein' - translating to 'bloodstone'. My piece, though, made a rather dark brown streak and, frankly, I would have preferred a lot more 'blood' in the 'colour'...


119. "Sterntaler"

Today's star is one I had thought of very early on in this project. I had not made it until now because, 1. I needed to get to my parents' place for that, and 2. it somehow is a winter star since it is related to a winter fairy tale: the Grimm Brothers' 'The Star Money':

For those unfamiliar with the Eurpoean currency: This is not an actual Euro coin! :D It's an old collector's coin from my Grandfather's coin collection. While the Euro was implemented in 2002 this coin was apparently minted in 1997... Anyway, it was large and silver (and out of one piece instead of two), and thus ideal for my plan.
I used some of my mother's old goldsmith tools and my father's advice to saw a star out of the coin. Surprisingly, it took less than an hour - template, sawing, filing, taking pictures and all.

This was the frontside before I destroyed it:

I forgot to take a picture of the backside but it showed the beginning of the German national anthem.

I'm a little astonished and really glad it worked seeing that I had serious doubts when the idea first occured to me. I'll keep it in my wallet now. :)


118. New Year Fireworks

Happy New Year 2012!

I spent almost an hour making lots of stars with friends last night.