We run kite making and kite flying across the UK in festivals and events. Afghan kites are made of simplest of tools and material. Its simply stalks of bamboo and sheets of tissue paper using pliers and blades to cut and whittle the bamboo into flexible spars for the frames; scissors to shape the tissue paper; and a bowl of glue.
We want to offer the experience of what is behind kite flying, the making of a simple flight craft. Kite flying is a craft part science and part art. The key to excellence depends on a combination of factors, both empirical and ineffable: the flexibility and balance of the kites' frames, the structure and robustness of kite skin, the quality of the string, the shape and angle of the spars, the bridling and balance of shape, but most importantly the passion of the fliers to feel the wind and to the vicissitudes of the wind.
The art of kite flying is one whose roots extend back to the ancient times. Kite running is a past time in many cultures. I grew up in Kabul where the art is practiced by an array of all ages. The skies above Kabul are decorated each day with colourful kites fluttering in the wind. The joy of kite flying has left me with vivid memories of running in the dusty streets leaping on the roof tops with other boys while trying to hide from the scorching sun of Kabul. Come along, I cannot promise the sun or roof bouncing but lets have a try at having fun.