Tag Archives: Shakespeare

Honeysuckle Rose

6 Jul

stone flora

One of the loveliest things I’m experiencing as I’m travelling across South Wales drawing ancient Neolithic stones is the flora; the lichens on the stones unchanging throughout the seasons, plants in the fields and hedgerows an ever-changing delight of colour, scent and texture. Last week’s journey to Kidwelly and Ferryside took us through hedgerows full of wild roses and honeysuckle, rhosod â llaeth y gaseg in Welsh. In Shakespeare’s plays, the little white rosa arvensis is called musk rose and the honeysuckle is woodbine, which also used to be the name of a brand of strong cigarettes many years ago. Technically, lichens are not plants but a composite life form of algae or cyanobacteria living in a symbiotic relationship with filaments of fungi and they can be many years old.

 

While I’ve been travelling across South Wales with archaeologist Dewi Bowen, drawing megaliths in the ancient Neolithic landscape, we’ve been accompanied by film maker Melvyn Williams and he’s been editing up short films as we go along. Here’s his latest instalment in the story of The Hunt / Yr Helfa. It’s just under 4 minutes long and it’s of me drawing and talking about the stones and how they inspire me……

All the work I’m doing will eventually be featured in a solo show in The Worker’s Gallery in the Rhondda Valley in September. If you want to know more, please click here. And to see more of my work for sale, please click here.

An Ancient Castle, Shakespeare and a Secret Garden.

3 Aug

The Merchant of Venice at Oystermouth Castle

Every year our council puts on some outdoor performances of Shakespeare plays in front of Oystermouth Castle in Mumbles. It’s one of those semi-ruined Norman castles and is a spectacular backdrop to the plays. We went to see The Merchant of Venice. I’d done it in school but back then I’d never really understood how racist and anti-semitic it is. Shocking, but also a very well written play and an insight into the past. Here’s an ink drawing I did at the performance.

Next to the castle is a secret walled garden where our allotment is. It’s lovely going down there in the day and spending a few hours gardening with that huge castle looming above us. We’ve got a shed there with a table and chairs – Melvyn made a little patio area from slate chippings and we take ice-cold elderflower cordial in the summer. There are lovely views down the wooded valley to the city in the distance and a fab coffee shop that does home-made shortbread around the corner.

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