In August 2013 we set sail from Stromness on our second Sea Change expedition, aboard Lerwick community boat The Swan, with a crew of 27 artists, scientists and informers. More ›

The Crew

The expedition crew of 27 includes a wide range of scientific and creative folk.
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Who is our Hercules?

Sofar crew 2 has been challenged by the elements, and one in specific; wind.
In our (my) daily city life I never make decisions based on the elements. You can’t suddenly not go to that meeting if it rains (though you want to this is generally not accepted a a great argument) or not go to the supermarket because there is Wind outside.
When it comes to boats this is all different. All your decisions are based on the elements. The tide, the wind, storms, rain, they will all massively affect your journey and if you don’t take them into account they could kill/severely damage you.
This is the reason why we haven’t sailed to Foula yet, the island we were supposed to go to yesterday. It would have been too dangerous. Instead we went to film amazing cliffs and toured around the island to admire the landscape and had a great lecture at the Marine centre in Scalloway. Today we still couldn’t sail to the island out but we went for a ‘small sail’, to get a ‘taste’. The small sail already included pretty rough waves, rain, cold and seasickness (not a great taste) so this afternoon I went a the local cinema to see a film and warm up (of course it was a boat related film, otherwise I wouldn’t have allowed myself to do so). With Ursula I went to see Jason and the Argonauts, a 1963 film by Don Chaffey and visual effects by Ray Harryhausen.
Jason is a young man with a quest, he goes on a voyage to the end of the world (Colchis) to find ‘the Golden Fleece’, a very important kind of blanket that brings peace and looks a lot like Christmas decoration. Like we have the weather that challenges us, Jason has the Gods. Zeus thinks its quite amusing that Jason faces all these battles, – like fighting a giant bronze Titan-, while Hera wants to help Jason and his friends find the Fleece.
Hera and Zeus don’t agree on this matter and leisurely discuss Jason’s life threatening journey hanging around fountains in their lovely white robes. Zeus allows her to give Jason 5 tips during his journey. Hera shows up on Jason’s boat in the shape of a stunning statue with hot flaming lips who whispers cryptic messages into Jason ear how to get to the Fleece.
The crew on board of the boat is carefully chosen by Jason. He selected them on based on their amazing qualities and skills. Some are strong, some are smart (one), some are great at throwing stuff. Together they can conquer the world. I think about my friends and how we probably more or less have the same qualities and skills and how useful that would be if a disaster were to happen. We know when is the best time of the day to put something on Facebook to have a maximum amount of ‘likes’ instead of knowing how to make fire. I think about our boat, our crew on the Swan and our different qualities. I feel we have a lot more smart people on board than Jason did, but I bet no one could push that big rock out of the way like Hercules did. Would we survive this voyage to the end of the world to go and get the Golden Fleece? Do we have a Hercules in our group, and what would my contribution be, now my IPhone is out of battery?





Author: Yasmine Ostendorf


Joins the expedition for week 3 Yasmine Ostendorf recently joined the Cape Farewell team.
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James Brady’s expedition blog for ecoartscotland

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See James Brady’s blog here:   http://ecoartscotland.net/    

Leaving Fair Isle

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Andy Crabb’s Sea Changes Part 1 now on vimeo

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Sea Changes, part 1 featuring Karine Polwart from Andy Crabb on Vimeo. Part 1 of a film about Cape Farewell’s Northern Isles expedition, on board the Swan LK243. The Swan is a traditional Shetland fishing sail boat, restored and operated by a community based trust in Shetland swantrust.com/. She is a truly beautiful boat. The film... Read more ›

Carbon Cycle

1.carbon sink
CARBON/SINK Site-specific organic drawing, North Haven pier, Fair Isle (peat and fresh water / 12” x 120”)     A musing on the ecology of the Carbon Cycle and the human intervention within it’s system: the symbiotic links between the entropy of organic matter – moorland as a carbon sink – fossil fuels – carbon... Read more ›

Wind, stone

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Wind, stone: by Teresa Elwes

Fish For The Table

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FishForTheTable 03 vimeo from Tam Treanor.

Microcosms: Eons, Tides and Dreams

‘I go to the rockpool at the slack of the tide to mind me what my poetry’s for.’ –      Jen Hadfield (from the poem, Daed-traa*)           ‘The parent materials were gathered together as volcanoes poured them out in fiery streams, as waters running over the bare rocks of the continents wore... Read more ›


bunk and deck
quota n 1. the proportional or part of a whole that is due from, due to, or allocated to a person or group 2. a prescribed number or quantity, as of items to be manufactured, imported, or exported, immigrants admitted to a country [from Latin quota pars how big a share?, from quotus of what... Read more ›

Freedom Come All Ye” performed by Karine Polwart in The Italian Chapel, Orkney August 2013.

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“Freedom Come All Ye” performed by Karine Polwart in The Italian Chapel, Orkney August 2013. from Andy Crabb on Vimeo. In August 2013 members of Cape Farewell’s “Sea Change” project explored the landscapes, history and future of the Orkneys whilst sailing on board The Swan, a beautifully restored Shetland Fifie. The group consisting of artists,... Read more ›

Pelagic Gannets

When the seas calmed and I was no longer confined to my sick bunk, it was wonderful to be on deck and to observe my new watery surroundings, I saw gannets flap and glide past the Swan and was amazed to see their large wingspan for the first time. They truly are a majestic bird!... Read more ›

Sea change See change

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Poet. Climate change.  Environmentalist.  Scientist. Carbon economy. (Ex-)soldier. Renewables. Conservationist.  Fishing quota.  Artist. Sustainability. Writer.  Everyday words susceptible to our own interpretation, predisposition and characterisation.   Words that can be polarising and divisive.  So what happens when you mix them with a few associated ingredients?  On the one hand there is the potential for an explosive... Read more ›

Big words + Lumpy times

scalloway map
LUMPY adj lumpier, lumpiest full of or having lumps (Transport / Nautical Terms) (esp of the sea) rough confused seas We headed south on ‘lumpy’ seas from Scalloway towards Sumburgh Head.  Our direction towards the East side was guided by the weather forecast and I was pleased to be moving at last. I have been... Read more ›