Monday, October 3, 2022
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Time, Artwork and A White Witch


So I did not publish for 3 weeks or so after which 4 weeks. And when it obtained about eight weeks I began feeling that was far too lengthy a time to be away.  And now, it is getting on for 5 months, and, effectively, I am unsure I keep in mind what running a blog feels like every extra! However in fact the easiest way to re-start running a blog is to only do it. So I will not even attempt to meet up with my life since my final publish in Could, and I am going to inform you as a substitute a few journey we took out into Surrey just a few days in the past. 

Surrey’s a county simply south of London, and components of it nonetheless really feel surprisingly rural, despite the fact that it is extremely totally different to the way it was 100 years in the past. Or 115 years, to be exact….. as a result of, on a go to to Hungerford, Berkshire, we visited my favorite second hand bookshop, which is in The Hungerford Arcade.  There, I picked up a e book written in 1906, merely titled “SURREY.”  

It has many fairly watercolour plates of Surrey because it was then. 

 

And when T. seemed on the photos there have been a lot of locations he preferred the look of, and we thought how good it will be to go and go to them. Some, like Betchworth, (above) are recognisable as we speak on Avenue View, though gardens are tidier now, and the  roads are metalled and have parked automobiles, as a substitute of chickens roaming about within the mud like in 1905. And naturally these picturesque cottages would have been damp and uncomfortable by fashionable requirements… and in addition it appeared a bit as if we have been making an attempt to show the clock again to 100 years in the past. However nonetheless, we obtained within the automotive and off we went, glad that we weren’t in 1905 for the travelling, at any price.  

The image that had significantly caught T’s eye was of Waverley Abbey, within the valley of the River Mole….proven right here as a most picturesque wreck draped in ivy, sitting within the parkland of Waverley Home mansion, so the textual content mentioned.

 

We knew it would not be draped with creeper now – it appears fantastic however wrecks the previous buildings it grows on finally.  And there was an general rosy side to the watercolours which made us suspect that the artist, Mr Sutton Palmer, may need had his rose tinted specs on. 

Waverley continues to be very rural, so we parked close by and walked about ten minutes down a footpath into what was clearly a part of the grounds of Waverley Home, which nonetheless stood throughout the River Wey to our proper…  

Waverley Abbey was a surprisingly giant number of ruins and fragments to our left.

 The constructing proven within the previous watercolour is seen in direction of the suitable, and we discovered that it led into a big vaulted corridor which principally nonetheless survives. We discovered that it had misplaced its apex since 1905, and the suitable hand high window had damaged nonetheless extra – in order that creeper had clearly carried out its depraved work.   

We seen {that a} system of fortifications had been constructed on the edges of the abbey website, one of an entire chain throughout the South of England in anticipation of a Nazi invasion in 1941. They’re now swallowed in vegetation, with the tank tank traps (beneath) now attractively lined in inexperienced moss, 

and a big gun emplacement now a wildlife haven however initially supposed to make the entire space a battleground. 

A fantastic huge gun banging away of their path would have been the tip of the abbey ruins, for certain, however fortunately, as we all know, that invasion by no means occurred.  

Based within the twelfth century, Waverley Abbey was each bit as imposing as the most important of cathedrals. Nonetheless, in round 1540, the king of England determined that neither Waverley, nor every other English abbeys, have been OK with him.  He did not see why others must be controlling all that money when he may have it. He was additionally certain the folks of England needed an English faith.  By blissful coincidence that may additionally permit him to divorce his spouse, who he was very fed up with, since he had his eye on one other one.  

So he closed down all of the abbeys, kicked out the monks (and the poor and sick who that they had taken care of) grabbed the cash, divorced the spouse and transformed the nation to an English faith with him on the head.  Sadly “Good King Hal” as King Henry VIII was recognized by his followers, went down in historical past as loveable rogue.  However he established the Church of England and altered the course of historical past, whether or not for good or unhealthy we’ll by no means know. 

Returning to the automotive, we noticed a footpath signal about 100 yards down the highway. It was nonetheless a few hours till sundown, so we determined to walk down the trail, which was closely wooded and ignored a river to the left and rose as much as the suitable to a small cliff.  We quickly handed a wrought iron gate set into the rocks. It led right into a cave, padlocked shut.   Exterior it, a small signal introduced that this was Mom Ludlam’s Cave.   

An indication defined that Mom Ludlam was a white witch who lived within the collapse medieval instances, and helped the poor by lending them issues they wanted. It appeared that the poor needed to return the borrowed objects after two days. Sooner or later somebody from Waverley Abbey borrowed a cauldron and did not give it again.  In truth, she flew into such a rage that the thief took sanctuary within the nearest church, which apparently nonetheless has the cauldron.  A witch’s cauldron is a humorous type of factor for a church to personal, so I count on the story has gained a bit within the telling over a whole lot of years.  I hope to go to the church and examine subsequent time I am within the space – if Mr. A.R. Hope Moncrieff e book is to be believed, there’s loads extra to see. 

 You can see into the cave simply.  I am certain it is modified so much and was in all probability cosier in 1400, however it definitely had a useful water provide.  

The e book has loads extra recommendations of what to see in Surrey so we’re trying ahead to exploring extra.  

We have been getting out on the bike as typically as potential too, however I did not really feel energetic the opposite day and T. took a cycle experience throughout the highest of London by Highgate Woods, alongside what was as soon as a railway line. There, he got here throughout a person portray one thing very, very small on the sting of what had as soon as been a disused railway platform. 

He did not thoughts being interrupted, and was very pleasant. He’s referred to as Ben Wilson and he works as an artist. Considered one of his initiatives is to color bits of discarded chewing gum. He hates litter and determined that one factor you might do with it was make artwork with it.  Portray chewing gum wanted no gallery, permission or license, since he was not littering himself, however solely bettering stuff which had already been discarded. 

He was a cheerful man and informed T. he started as a sculptor, however has moved extra in direction of the miniature chewing gum work lately. It will probably take him a very long time to create an image. To start out with, he makes use of a blow torch to warmth the gum after which paints it with three coats of enamel, and finishes it off with lacquer.  T. did not get an image of the image he was portray right here, however I discovered a picture on the web and right here it’s.  

({Photograph}: Ben Wilson)

Ben informed T that he makes little “trails” of tiny photos, so our subsequent venture is to hunt them out now we’ve an thought the place they’re.

We have been spending a whole lot of this lockdown time strolling round Hampstead Heath and attending to understand it very well. We actually haven’t obtained tired of it in any respect in all these months.  The opposite week I noticed some bits of – effectively,  “discovered artwork”  I assume you’d say, in one of many extra distant corners of the Heath. First I noticed a Dame (Queen) of Spades and thought she should be French – she appears so glamorous.  

However then I discovered the Jack of Spades, and determined the playing cards should be German, as a result of the Jack (or Knave) known as the Bube.  

 There was no hint of the König (King) of Spades nor of any of the opposite playing cards within the court docket, and it seemed virtually as if the virile younger Jack and the beautiful younger Queen had eloped collectively. This could clarify why they have been so removed from residence, in these shadowy night woods above London, alone beneath the swaying bushes. I left them undisturbed, and I hope their story labored out effectively! 

I’ve determined to take a 5 day course on the Royal Drawing Faculty.  The topic is Inside and Exterior Area.  I am hoping I am going to be taught a bit about drawing interiors from my creativeness. However the humorous factor is that I am getting increasingly more keen on nature, significantly nature on a tiny scale. The nearer you zoom into nature, the extra element you see and the extra wonderful stunning and harmonious all of it is.  

In my semi-lockdown walks, I have been  photographing extraordinary trying bits of grassland, woodland flooring, patches of untamed flowers and so forth.  This typical shot reveals leaves, lifeless grass and small bracken vegetation. It’s fairly however strolling round a wooden you won’t even discover it underfoot.  

 I mess around with the ensuing photographs in Photoshop with the goal of forgetting about what the issues within the image truly are, and solely trying on the types and shapes and means they’re put collectively. 

Right here is the picture above, rotated 90 levels,  and changing right into a destructive.   

The pictures I get could also be partly or completely summary, however they appear to me to indicate the unimaginable complexity, vitality, and motion of Nature.  I really feel I can pin any concepts I would like on these photographs. The one beneath appears virtually violent to me, reminding me of some form of alien creature bursting out of  a torrent or flood.   Actually, it is a group of toadstools quietly rising on a log, with bits of horse chestnut case scattered about.  

The image beneath was not altered in any respect. It is only a patch of bracken, and appears as if it was waving within the wind, besides that it was standing completely nonetheless. 

 I’m not certain I will be as within the synthetic interiors after I begin my course, however I am trying ahead to it anyway as it’s one thing totally different from what I’ve ever carried out.

I’ve been visiting all of your blogs throughout the previous few months, although not all the time commenting, and can proceed to do this. Thanks for being there, and hope you’re having fun with your autumn! 

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