Tag Archives: Daily Mail

Red Alert, Continuous Line Detected on Train Tracks Puzzle.

I started doing Train Tracks puzzles in the Daily Mail a few months ago and then moved onto Medium puzzles (dimensions up to 10 x10) on puzzlemadness.co.uk and a month ago tried Large difficulty (dimensions up to 12 x 12).

You start off with a grid which states the number of cells which occur vertically or horizontally and they give you some bits of track initially, including start and end track at the edge.

Train tracks from puzzlemadness.co.uk Large difficulty 12.12.2020. Mick Burton, continuous line artist.

There are many attractive elements to this sort of puzzle, including the possibility of solving them totally without trial and error.  The first thing to do is to add initial offshoots for all these start tracks.  Next look for any rows which already meet the number of cells containing track, such as the right hand vertical which has the required two including the offshoot.  This allows you to allocate spaces to the remaining 10 cells. 

Being an artist, I know the value of space in a picture and it is particularly important here.  Then you have to consider the various types of track and on you go.  Constantly checking and rechecking is the key as you add pieces.  Bear in mind that the aim is to end up with one route from start to finish, avoiding dead ends, and use that to your advantage.  Finding dead ends is also useful as you can allocate spaces.

It is best to start off with smaller easier Train Tracks puzzles to get used to the process.

I attempt my puzzles on paper where I draw the grid and enter the numbers and given track pieces.  My fingers are too wide and clumsy to do much prodding on my mobile phone and if I complete the puzzle I then tap in the answer.  Here is my initial drawing of the above puzzle.

Initial attempt at the rail track puzzle (large difficulty) of 12.12.2020. Mick Burton, continuous line artist.

When I loaded this on my phone, I expected that as I tapped in the last piece the completed puzzle would disappear to be replaced by congratulations across the screen, for completing a route from start to finish.  Instead I saw the Red Alert.  It is not normally an offence to produce a continuous line in this blog.

I am good at mending this sort of thing of course and here is the final result – there is a X (space indicator) so that you see the complete shape before the last piece goes in causing the whole thing to disappear.

Correct completion of Train Tracks puzzle, with just the last bit to go in. Mick Burton, continuous line artist.

I am interested in various stand alone structures which have an environmental feel to them, where all the different elements can produce a surprising result.  

As it has been Lockdown etc,  I have completed 94 in about 10 weeks scoring 17,925 points, which put me at position 272 out of 863 listed.  Top is Stirlingkincaid with 2,766,965 !

On the monthly list I am 91st with 7,650 points.  Stirlingkincaid has 228,640 – does this person ever sleep?

Personally, I will probably move on now, looking for more structures which I can unlock with my continuous line knowledge.  Also, I need to finish my current work about Drawing Prime Numbers.

Show me a real Green Cat.

 

 

Cat who slept on a heap of old green paint. Daily Mail, December 5, 2014.  Mick Burton, continuous line drawing.

Cat who slept on a heap of old green paint. Daily Mail, December 5, 2014. Mick Burton, continuous line drawing.

I always thought that Green was a natural colour for a cat done with my continuous line drawing, but I never realised that one would appear. Here we are, in the Daily Mail report on a cat who is actually green and wandering around quite happily. It turns out that the cat slept in a garage on an abandoned heap of green paint.

My original Green Cat was created in 1969 as one of four animals sold to J Arthur Dixon Ltd., a greetings card company that was based on the Isle of Wight.  They produced sets of Notelets with them on, sold in little cardboard boxes.  Here are the four designs.

Green Cat, continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton.  Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

Green Cat, single continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton. Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

Golden Horse, continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton.  Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

Golden Horse, single continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton. Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

Blue Elephant, continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton.  Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

Blue Elephant, single continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton. Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

Red Lion, continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton.  Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

Red Lion, single continuous line drawing and alternate shading, by Mick Burton. Notelet design for J Arthur Dixon Ltd, Isle of Wight, 1969.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I continued the Green theme for a cat when I started producing my own greetings cards in 2013. This time I used colour sequence from yellow, through greens to blues.

The narrative on the card is about a cat that we had who used to get into all sorts of scrapes. His real name was Sandy and he looked a bit like the cat in the background in the Daily Mail photo above.</strong

Ragamuffin, green cat, continuous line drawing with colour sequence.  Greetings Card (front)  by Mick Burton.

Ragamuffin, green cat, single continuous line drawing with colour sequence. Greetings Card (front)
by Mick Burton.

Ragamuffin, continuous line drawing with alternate shading.  Rear of Greeting Card by Mick Burton.

Ragamuffin, single continuous line drawing with alternate shading. Rear of Greeting Card by Mick Burton.

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