5 red earth days

west somerset 713

A few months back Francesca[i] and I took a break in West Somerset, to spend a bit of time concentrating on our own work. Badger Cottage in Woodford had been my brother’s home for 17 years until recently, so somewhere I am lucky enough to know fairly well. He had been working at Nettlecombe Court; a Field Studies Council[ii] residential Centre situated on the Exmoor border just south of the historic port of Watchet. The nearby coast clearly displays numerous transitions between Permian, Triassic and Jurassic geological ages, a story spanning some 150 million years, while inland the fertile soils are predominated by the rich red stain of iron oxide that was historically mined in the area. For me I am always blown away by the wealth of specimen trees dating back some 300 years that dot the hills and fields and by the array of flowering plants that make up the hedgerows. How much the underlying bedrock and the resulting soil affect the ambience, culture and more specifically colour of a place is a question I continue to ask. The images that follow represent our time looking and some of my artistic responses that resulted…

red earth days, west somerset (p ward 2013) red earth days, west somerset (p ward 2013)

 nettlecombe grasses and flowers, west somerset (p ward 2013) nettlecombe grasses and flowers, west somerset (p ward 2013) – green alkanet, nettle, bittersweet, red dead nettle, grass (?), thistle, wild rose, elderflower

nettlecombe grasses, trees and flowers, west somerset (p ward 2013) nettlecombe grasses, trees and flowers, west somerset (p ward 2013)

nettlecombe landscape, west somerset (p ward 2013) nettlecombe landscape, west somerset (p ward 2013)

old friends, birdhill and cleeve abbey, west somerset (p ward 2013) old friends, birdhill and cleeve abbey, west somerset (p ward 2013)

birdhill, west somerset (p ward 2013) birdhill, west somerset (p ward 2013)

drawing 1, blue anchor bay, west somerset (p ward 2013) drawing 1, blue anchor bay, west somerset (p ward 2013)

drawing 2, blue anchor bay, west somerset (p ward 2013) drawing 2, blue anchor bay, west somerset (p ward 2013)

blue anchor bay, west somerset (p ward 2013) blue anchor bay, west somerset (p ward 2013)

red earth garden, west somerset (p ward 2013) red earth garden, west somerset (p ward 2013)

with many thanks to Mark for the use of his beautiful cottage

and Francesca for her splendid and insightful company

🙂

P Ward 2013


[i] http://dancingwithdyes.wordpress.com/

[ii] http://www.field-studies-council.org/

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