Gavin Pretor-Pinney is the founder of the Cloud Appreciation Society, an organisation with a growing international fanbase that aims to fight `blue-sky thinking'. He has given talks about the sky for TED (over 1.2M views) and Google, and organises cloudspotting trips and international sky gatherings. He has presented television documentaries for the BBC and Channel 4 and is a Visiting Fellow at the Meteorology Department of Reading University and winner of the Royal Meteorological Society's Michael Hunt award. Gavin is a co-founder of the Idler magazine and the author of the internationally bestselling Cloudspotter's Guide and Cloud Collector's Handbook. His third book, The Wavewatcher's Companion, won the prestigious Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books. He lives in Somerset.
This really is the most gorgeously scrumptious book, showcasing some truly beautiful and awe-inspiring skies. 365 photographs and paintings, information, science, poetry and quotations all sit inside this rather lovely cover. The book is a great size, not too unwieldy, and after the introduction, which also gives some handy page numbers of some of the highlights, every single page is adorned with clouds. Did you know there was a Cloud Appreciation Society? I didn’t, but of course it makes complete sense! Gavin Pretor-Pinney started the society and says: “Having your head in the clouds, even for just a few moments each day, is good for your mind, good for you body and good for your soul. This book aims to show you why.” It certainly does show you why, you can open it at random, return again and again, and just soak up the images. The next time you head out, you can look up and know a little bit more about our beautiful skies. A Cloud A Day is a stunner, visually and mentally stimulating, it has been chosen as a LoveReading Star Book.
A cloudspotter's interactive journal. Our interest in clouds is more profound than we ever thought. Gavin Pretor-Pinney, founder of the Cloud Appreciation Society and author of A Cloud A Day has been spreading the word via social media and hugely popular TED talks, and the response has been revelatory. Following on from his very successful A Cloud A Day book, he wants readers to take time each day to look at the shifting skies. To take a moment, as he says. Then, using the prompts and space in the journal, record the cloud, weather, and importantly their thoughts on that day. It is the perfect mindful occupation. To help readers understand the clouds they are looking at, the book includes a hugely useful pin wheel device - a cloud selector - at the back of the journal. The device allows the reader to visually match the cloud they see in the sky with the cloud in the selector device, which has all the information about that particular cloud they need. From the cloudlets of the altocumulus clouds to the rarer Lacunosus cloud (holes surrounded by fringes of cloud). In amongst the prompts and spaces are stunning images of clouds with bits of poetry, science and folklore. It is the ideal interactive journal for those interested in clouds and the weather but also for those looking for the perfect way to spend 10 minutes of the day to reconnect with nature and the passing of the seasons. Praise for A Cloud A Day: '[This] charming little volume reminds us that self-care is as available as a glance out the window, no matter your age or infirmities' The New York Times 'A confident celebration of our ever-changing skies... I defy anyone who reads it not to start taking furtive peeks out the window.' Robert Leigh-Pemberton, Daily Telegraph
One bright February afternoon on a beach in Cornwall, Gavin Pretor-Pinney took a break from cloudspotting and started watching the waves rolling into shore. Mesmerised, he wondered where they had come from, and decided to find out. He soon realised that waves don't just appear on the ocean, they are everywhere around us, and our lives depend on them. From the rippling beats of our hearts, to the movement of food through our digestive tracts and of signals across our brains, waves are the transport systems of our bodies. Everything we see and hear reaches us via light and sound waves, and our information age is reliant on the microwaves and infrared waves used by the telephone and internet infrastructure. From shockwaves unleashed by explosions to torsional waves that cause suspension bridges to collapse, from sonar waves that allow submarines to 'see' with sound to Mexican waves that sweep through stadium crowds... there were waves, it seemed, wherever Gavin looked. But what, he wondered, could they all have in common with ones we splash around in on holiday? By the time he made the ultimate surfer's pilgrimage to Hawaii, Gavin had become a world-class wavewatcher, although he was still rubbish at surfing. And, while this fascinating, funny book may not teach you how to ride the waves, it will show you how to tune into the shapes, colours and forms of life's many undulations.
THE CLOUD COLLECTOR'S HANDBOOK fits into pockets, allowing cloudspotters to identify cloud formations anytime and anywhere. All the common cloud types are represented, as are many of the rare ones, each fully described and illustrated with a range of photographs. Not only is THE CLOUD COLLECTOR'S HANDBOOK an invaluable resource for anyone who wants to be able to identify and understand every cloud that floats by, it also caters for the competitive cloudspotter. Points are awarded for each cloud type identified - the rarer the cloud, the greater points - and there's space to fill in where and when it was sighted. Beautifully designed, in colour throughout, and full of the humour that made THE CLOUDSPOTTER'S GUIDE so engaging, the HANDBOOK is the essential reference for anyone with their head in the clouds.
'The clouds are nature's poetry, and the most egalitarian of her displays, since everyone has an equally fantastic view of them. Clouds are for dreamers, and their contemplation benefits the soul. Yet their beauty is so everyday as to be in danger of being overlooked ...' Gavin Pretor Pinney is the chairman and founder member of the Cloud Appreciation Society. He contends that we are blessed in this country with a uniquely rich and varied cloudscape, which has hitherto been sadly undervalued. His book teaches us to appreciate their different varieties - the cumulus, nimbostratus and Morning Glory to name only a few - and all their beauties and significances, both meteorological and cultural. We learn how Hindus believed the cumulus clouds were the spiritual cousins of elephants, how thermal air currents act on fair weather cumuli, and how to save a fortune in psychiatric bills by using the clouds as Rorschach images that reflect our state of mind as well as nature's moods. Looking up will never be the same again.