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June 3, 2015 / philosophermouseofthehedge

The Gritty Tooth. Sandy going.

Sandcastle. Giant head.(AIA contest, 2015.screenshot

Sinking or rising? Perspective is important.©

They always dream, the young.

THEY will find the ultimate. They ARE the ultimate. The Final Answer.

Admirers will flock to their efforts. Accolades will be awarded.

Enter the Dragon. (AIA Sandcastle competition, 2015. Screenshot

Enter the Dragon. (AIA Sandcastle competition, 2015. Screenshot

Their elaborate creations, their castles in the air, will stand as a beacon – calling to others.

Teaching. Encouraging. Pontificating.

Though, behind the blustering windy, these harbor secret knowledge.

Nothing gold can stay. And it’s better that way.

Perfection only hinders progress.

You have to let go, then go on ahead.

A grain of truth found among sand – even for the long of tooth.

NO permissions granted. 2015 AIA sandcastle Contest. Jurassic Dr. Seuss scene one day after. ALL rights reserved/copyright

Molly much amused by the Jurassic Dr. Seuss entry. Gator’s got that Cat in the Hat. (A day after the 2015 AIA sandcastle Competition. Galveston’ s East beach)©

Building grit

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Large cat glaring. (2015 AIA Sandcastle Competition/ Screenshot:

Of course, THIS is why RC Cat insisted we go. She wanted to see if her likeness was faithful to reality. Of course the cat had already walked off by the time we got there. Typical cat.(2015 AIA Sandcastle Competition/

See all 60 of the 2015 American Institute of Architects’ Sandcastle Competition entries. (Scroll down to thumbnails on right above “Resources” and click for large gallery images.)

The builders are architects. They are serious.

You’ll love the Lego, PinInterest, Star Wars, Fear the Beard (NBA basketball nod), Keystone Pipeline, an amazing maze….Well, all the entries are amazing – including castles.

2015 5th place winner "The Hunger Games" entry (William Hebel / screenshot)

Hungry, hungry hippos. 2015 AIA Sandcastle Competition. 5th place winner.(William Hebel/

More photos:

Stacked up rectangles. AIA sandcastle contest Site 60. Jackson and Ryan Architects, Inc. (WIlliam Hebel/ screenshot)

Blocked. (AIA sandcastle contest.Jackson and Ryan Architects.(WIlliam Hebel/ screenshot)

melting sand castle. (NO permissions granted, all rights reserved. Copyrighted)

If you build it they will come. And stay for a while. Until it gets hot. Things start sliding. Stuff starts getting watered down. No wonder society is in such a rush. Seen the future of shifting sands.©

sandcastle tower.ALL rights reserved, copyrighted

Not a wash out. Towering over the crabs even days later. All should be so lucky. ©

Related Post (We caught one practicing): “Sanding down Game of Thrones”

sharp crisp lettering in sand "Sandcastles" All rights reserved. NO permissions granted. Copyrighted.

All considered, the lettering most intrigued me. Days later, fragile defensive sand, yet the words are still sharp and hold meaning. Writing is like that.©






  1. Paul / Jun 3 2015 12:36 pm

    Very cool Phil – loved he pictures. thank you for risking life and limb in the name of photojournalism (you could have been attacked by sand monsters – remember Dune?)


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 3 2015 1:40 pm

      At least this year Molly didn’t growl and bark ferociously at the dragons. (Although the snake tendrils of the Medusa did get a wary eyeing). It was risky – the volleyballs, small darting children, sharp shell fragments hiding in sand – and of course, the dreaded tiny grain of sand attacking your eye. (Dune. Loved the books, hated the movie).
      I am going to dig through the endless grains of WP posts /run back to pick p those links. Your post destinations are not coming up in Reader (sigh.Is there a filter or something on reader? What is going on? It was so much easier to track back with thumbnails instead of mobile friendly device scrolling system.) Hope the drenching weather isn’t darkening your skies. Thanks for crafting a sandy comment


  2. Carrie Rubin / Jun 3 2015 12:40 pm

    These are wonderful. I couldn’t imagine accomplishing such a sand feat. Let’s just hope the beach-walking dogs aren’t tempted to leave their ‘mark’ on them. 😉


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 3 2015 1:48 pm

      This year’s event did have some rain to contend with so maybe that’s why the sculptures didn’t last as long afterwards…that and some big feet – even a vehicle of some sort. The dogs seem a bit wary.
      These are definitely worthy of being called sculptures (Wait until you see what else got dug up. What skill. And some insight how they do it. Hope to get it done by Friday…but you know how it is when you set deadlines. HA HA)
      Thanks for stopping by to play in this sandy box

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Beth / Jun 3 2015 12:57 pm

    Amazing! And I’ll have to say the cat entry couldn’t be RC, it’s not glorious enough and lacks a certain regal air.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 3 2015 1:53 pm

      RC complained they hadn’t captured her fluffiness very well. She is busy drafting a memo to that team, no doubt, with suggestions for next year.
      Building sand sculptures like these must be tedious delicate work.They have secrets – they are bound to have sand secrets! One probably being no beer allowed until completed? Thanks for leaving a grain of comment sand

      Liked by 1 person

  4. sustainabilitea / Jun 3 2015 1:23 pm

    Sand and ice sculptures never fail to amaze me with their creativity and beauty. Thanks for sharing these. The closest I get to a sand feat is sandy feet.



    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 3 2015 1:57 pm

      How do they manage to get all that detail without a crash? Such potential for a cartoon-like finish: “Let me make this one tiny last line…and the whole arm falls off..” I’ll just watch and enjoy their results, too. Thanks for stacking up a comment


  5. easyweimaraner / Jun 3 2015 1:33 pm

    I love it and I’m always a little sad when they are “gone with the wind” after a while … I once entered a sand castle contest and I won a small flower power wind wheel (booby prize for being the last one lol)


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 3 2015 2:00 pm

      Easy, you did better with the sandcastle contest than I would. I’m really good at digging big holes in the sand, but that’s about it. We’ll sit in the shade and watch, OK? Thanks for trotting down the sandy beach


  6. Littlesundog / Jun 3 2015 2:24 pm

    I think RC cat would have had the same disappointing reflection on seeing the “cat” entry as I did the time a friend presented a painting of myself (modern art – which I do not have the painting, but was shown the finished piece). I was aghast – apparently he noticed that one of my eyes is not as “open” as the other, and the focus of the whole painting was a big smile and one squinty eye!! That cat sculpture does not even come close to the magnificence and regal-ness of RC cat. Perhaps my sense of art and sculpture leaves much to be desired… but I must FEEL the work. It just didn’t happen with that sand sculpture! Ha ha! On the flip side though, I could’t even hope to form sometime simple in sand so I have to say these folks really are talented. 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 3 2015 4:36 pm

      RC keeps complaining they left off her Paws of Fury. She was expecting a Sphinx pose instead of Grumpy Cat. We soothe her by saying, they knew they couldn’t do her justice and settled for a lesser – commercial – cat. We bought some time. She’s mulling it over. Run.
      Thanks for painting such a sandy tale!


  7. shoreacres / Jun 3 2015 3:29 pm

    I rather like the hippos, myself. And what I especially enjoyed was the sly way you slipped some Robert Frost into the story.Nothing like a little Frost to cool off the competition!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 3 2015 4:33 pm

      We could have used some frost after hiking in from the free parking back 40. Summer is here. Molly’s trips to shore will have to be limited to very early or very late until mid Sept. Been researching how they manage to get all these details. (wait a bit longer for that reveal.) Thanks for scooping up a comment to add to this comment castle


  8. dogear6 / Jun 3 2015 8:10 pm

    Those were incredible. The thing about sand (and ice) sculpture is how impermanent it is, yet people go through exquisite work to make it. It’s a good lesson on enjoying our art but letting go of the result.

    Thanks for sharing!


    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 4 2015 1:10 am

      One sand artist compare it to cooking a fine meal – it’s fun and the results are beautiful, but you don’t want the stuff sitting around forever. You are right: share and enjoy! Thanks for kicking that sandy remark this way

      Liked by 1 person

  9. PiedType / Jun 3 2015 10:46 pm

    Like everyone else, I find sand and ice sculptures awe-inspiring. Such artistry. And yet it’s all so fleeting. That’s definitely part of the charm — that people devote such time and effort to something so short-lived.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 4 2015 1:19 am

      Fleeting by design. Reminds me of those sand paintings that are so intricate, yet blow away once complete. A whole different philosophy to life. Thanks for sanding a smooth comment to for this sandbox.


  10. Ally Bean / Jun 4 2015 1:02 pm

    Loving the cat one, although the dragon one inspires, too. Such talent on display. Great photos.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 5 2015 9:08 pm

      All the elaborate details and textures certainly catch your attention. Our castles were never so intricate. Thanks for sending a sandy comment


  11. Jay E. / Jun 4 2015 3:04 pm

    Wonderful photographs; like you, I find the words most inspiring.


  12. D. Wallace Peach / Jun 4 2015 3:12 pm

    I have great memories of building sand castles with my dad and brothers as a kid. Nothing quite as spectacular as these. I love the line “Perfection only hinders progress.” Great photos.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 5 2015 9:14 pm

      Such elegant creations fleeting by design. How cool you had family-built castles. Easier to appreciate the difficulty if you’ve tried. (If you get time, run back over and look at the next post featuring ultra sand sculptures of The Museum of Sand in Japan. Stunning works too good to not share.) Thanks for molding a sandy comment for this castle


  13. Robin / Jun 4 2015 4:23 pm

    Great series of images, and really cool sand sculptures. I’ll have to wait until August for our local Sandfest.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 5 2015 9:19 pm

      August? Whew. Too hot for me to beach it for too long. You’ll go and report back to us with pictures? (I’ll just wait here in the AC) Thanks for eyeing these sands!


  14. reneejohnsonwrites / Jun 5 2015 10:36 am

    Sand artisans completely amaze me. I have trouble getting it to hold shape in a form and they can just sculpt it into the most fabulous effects. Love this.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 5 2015 9:22 pm

      They have tricks! I found out a few from the Museum of Sand. Who knew to pound it into a tough brick first? And it helps to have the right kind of sand – which apparently is in Japan. (today’s post – you think this competition’s sand sculptures were amazing…) I’ll just sit in the shade and watch, too. Thanks for scooping up a comment to leave


  15. The Hook / Jun 5 2015 11:58 pm

    In all the Multiverse, there’s only one you, my friend.
    Stay immutable, like the sands of time. Always flowing, but never disintegrating..


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 8 2015 6:24 pm

      A place for everything and everything in its’ place; sand, wet bathing suits, and a long ride home – Now that would move anyone to tears. Thanks adding to the grains of these comment sands


  16. angelswhisper2011 / Jun 6 2015 6:23 pm

    This is so COOL artwork, Philmouse, but the resemblance of the lion-kitty to RC Cat is breath taking 😀 Pawkisses for a Happy Weekend 🙂 ❤


  17. jmmcdowell / Jun 9 2015 6:11 pm

    Those are all amazing, although I admit a fondness for the clever word play with those hungry hippos. 😉 I suspect Frank Lloyd Wright would approve of the temporary nature of the art. He apparently wanted his buildings to return to the landscape—not to be kept as “museum pieces” or the like beyond their time.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jun 9 2015 7:04 pm

      It was odd that while the sculptures had some wear and tear by humans, the words were often untouched and still clear. The hippo display was a winner for me.
      I didn’t realize Frank Lloyd Wright’s son was also an architect. Whew, talk about a difficult time living up to legends. architecture is fascinating (the history/philosophy/and construction methods). Pretty concerned about new looting/selling of ancient cultural artifacts in Syria and Iraq. Much will disappear from the public forever. British Museum needs to guard/hang on to what they are sheltering.Not everything is meant to return to dust, right?
      Thanks for sculpting a comment in these sands


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