ArticlesAlthough digital technology and access is changing the use of our written world, we were proud to start our communication through the Journal. This wonderful “printed” blog approach came mostly from the editorial direction and pen of Scott Skinner, Ali Fujino, and our man in the field, Ben Ruhe. From years of Journal publications, we changed the format to be not a few individuals’ view but to have individuals of the kite community use their own words to bring forth something innovative and exciting about the world of kites. Enter the current edited version of Discourse by Katie Davis, Scott Skinner, and Ali Fujino. Below are archived articles from both the Journal and Discourse.
- Memories from a Southern California Kite Family
Introduction by Scott Skinner
- The Search for Usable Energy
In man’s search for usable energy, the journey started with the first spark that led to harnessing fire, and continues toward the hope of nuclear fusion power in the future. Here I’d like to draw from that history and consider how kites may be on the verge of becoming a small part of that story.
- Tribute to Charlie Sotich
Editor’s Note: This tribute to Charlie Sotich captures the importance of the community of kiting. Drachen was honored to work with Marla and Ron Miller to help preserve Charlie’s legacy for generations to come. Examples of his work can be seen at www.drachen.org. Donate to the “Thank You Charlie” Program at www.gofundme.com/ThankYouCharlie. More information about the program should be directed to Marla Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org. Upload your photos of Charlie’s kites to our website at www.drachen.org.
- The Surubí: A Creative Context
“Thinking is the recognition of my ideas from the response of others.” – Alexander Kluge What does a happy child on top of a mountain at the Argentinian Patagonia have in common with a group of youngsters living in poor conditions but enjoying a beautiful experience at the delta of the Rio de la Plata River in Buenos Aires? And with many other children all over Argentina, Chile, Guatemala, China, and Italy? Or with a grandfather who inhabits the joyful space of a gathering with his grandson?
- Interview with Melanie Walker
You make your residence in Boulder, Colorado. How did you get there, and what’s a day like in Boulder? I moved to Boulder in 1992 when I was hired in a tenure track position in the photography area of the art department at the University of Colorado at Boulder. I had been teaching for about 18 years at that point at a number of universities around the U.S. but could never find a place to stay. I wanted to be in the west and it worked out.
- Interview with Ben Ruhe
Introduction by Ali Fujino Ben was there for Drachen in the early years as the professional writer to research and document the world of kiting. As a world-class traveler, there was no place that Ben wouldn’t go to find a story, documenting the history and culture of kites. (Ben reports that he has visited exactly 84 countries!) It is his journalistic talents that have given the kiting world professional documentation in both written and photographic imagery.
- Interview with Malcolm Goodman
Can you tell us how long you’ve been involved in kite flying and about your life in England before kites? My attraction to wind and flight began early in childhood. Like many of us, I recall making and flying brown paper diamond kites with my father, but the pastime did not grab me and I put it aside, as in my early teens I was more interested in crystal sets and short wave radios. I left school at 14 without any qualifications. I was diagnosed later in life as having dyslexia.
- Interview with LaRoy Rutledge
There is a whole range of radical, recreational sports dependent upon excellent kite flying skills: kite buggying, snow kiting, hang gliding, and paragliding, to name just a few. One of the fastest growing water sports in the U.S. is foilboarding (also known as hydrofoil kiteboarding), an extreme segment of kiteboarding. In place of a flat kiteboard, picture a small surfboard with a carbon fiber wing attached one meter below it. At speed, the wing lifts the rider and the board a couple of feet above the water, creating a virtual “magic carpet” ride.
- Mikio Toki
Kitefliers in Colorado have been lucky for the last two years because of the Japan America Society of Colorado and their commitment to hosting a kite fly in the Stapleton neighborhood of Denver during the annual Denver Days celebration throughout the city. With the help of Denver’s Japanese Consulate, the Society brought kitemaker Mikio Toki to the event both years.
- The Experiments of 1899: Wilbur and Orville Wright Fly a Kite
The names of the places where Wilbur and Orville Wright made history are familiar to people everywhere who know and cherish the story of the invention of the airplane. The brothers tested their first kite/glider at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina in 1900, then shifted their seasonal camp four miles south to the Kill Devils Hills, where they flew from 1901 to 1903. They perfected their invention at Huffman Prairie, eight miles east of Dayton, in 1904 and 1905, and opened their flying field there in 1910.