winter

My bird of the month for February is the mute swan.  Here’s why: Swans have been really visible this month.  At the start of the month the pond near us, at Tweedbank, was frozen solid and the swans stood awkwardly on top of the ice.  I always think swans look funny standing.  They are so …

Bird of the Month February: Mute Swan Read More »

This year I am going to feature a ‘Bird of the Month’ on the blog as the year goes by.  This is the first in the series. My bird of the month for January is the heron.  It took me all month to decide.  Then on Monday I was walking down by the river and …

Bird of the Month January: Grey Heron Read More »

[This year I have decided to study two big Horse Chestnut trees near our house.  This is Part 2 of my sketchbook-learnings.] February was hostile.  Storms everywhere, wet almost every day, icy winds.  Not the ideal weather for visiting trees with the baby.  We did manage a few trips along to check up on our …

The Drygrange Chestnuts Pt.2: February Bark Read More »

Here at Drygrange there are some wonderful Horse Chestnut trees in the woodland.  I have two favourites in particular.  One of them overhangs the drive in, and the other one is fairly nearby down a muddy slope.  I always make a point of greeting them as we walk by.  I have really enjoyed watching them …

The Drygrange Chestnuts: A New Project for 2020 Read More »

Our dog, Buddy, isn’t one of those nice dogs that doesn’t like rain and delicately steps around puddles.  He needs lots of exercise in every weather.  On our daily walks, I often take my camera – and sometimes my Polaroid, too – with me.  Buddy has got quite used to waiting for me to stop …

Process: Photographs, Sketchbook & Finished Drawings Read More »

With February comes the noticeable lengthening of the days.  Although the days have been inching longer since the winter solstice on December 21st, it’s only once February dawns that we begin to make some serious daylight progress.  Winter’s midpoint was on February 3rd, and from that point on the days stretch out and the night …

February Wildlife: What to Look Out for This Month Read More »

There’s very little more lovely than seeing the delicate imprint of bird tracks dancing across fresh snow in January.  It feels like you have woken up to a new world.  Snow-fall at New Year always seem poignant, like nature is drawing us a blank slate on which to build the year ahead. A few days …

January Wildlife: What To Look Out For This Month Read More »

I recently shared the motivation behind my new ‘A Garden for Wildlife’ project and now I wanted to tell you about the inspiration behind the specific designs.  The ‘A Garden for Wildlife’ range is all about the plants, flowers and habits that help wildlife to thrive in gardens.  The first one, Winter Food, features a charm …

Winter Food: Teasels & Goldfinches Read More »

For me, there’s something magical about December.  The heavy frosts, cold dark nights, and whitewashed day-time skies.  The lattice-work of silhouetted bare branches against pastel sunsets.  There’s a stillness to December.  The wildlife seems to have retreated.  The only movement on our walks is the panicked noisy flight of pheasants when Buddy disturbs them.  To …

December Wildlife: What To Look Out For In Nature This Month Read More »

The first year I printed my own Christmas cards, I drew a robin.  I sold the cards at craft fairs for 60p.  That was six years ago.  The same little robin redbreast cards are still one of my most popular cards today.  Every year I think maybe this is the year he should retire – …

The Robin: Why We Love Him So Read More »

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