Saturday, 13 February 2010

A flash of Red

We walked along the bridle way, a lovely old path with high hedges to shelter you from the wind and rain. No need for shelter today it was beautiful, bright sunshine and a crisp clear day with views for miles around. By accident, on my walk I ended up at the farm where my Dad lived before he married my Mum. Although I have looked up at at this group of buildings from the road, this was the first time I had visited this farm. From its high position the views were amazing, yet on a cold dark wintry day it must be a lonely place to live, it felt very exposed to the elements.
I imagined my Dad growing up here, walking the same foot paths across the fields and passing through the same stone stiles that I just had. As I left I could see how close he was to nature, growing up at this farmhouse surrounded by fields and trees with the lovely views. He was always the one to give me values, to appreciate where I grew up, see how lucky we were to live in the countryside and by the sea. As a family we walked miles, and enjoyed our environment.
Dad was a wonderful gardener, I spent hours watching him lovingly grow all the flowers from seed for the pretty garden. He grew soft fruits and vegetables, we tasted food straight from the ground.
Dad would show me chrysalis and ladybirds, spiders and beetles, worms and little mice in the greenhouse. On walks he would find birds nests, moles, rabbit holes and frogs for us to see. I remember watching and being mesmerized by the dragonfly at the quarry dams on the moors and seeing snakes and newts and so much more.
It sparked off many memories of my Dad. He would have loved seeing my drawings, he knew I had the same love of nature as he did. Along the bridle path I collected the empty snail shells, the hawthorn leaves and I found the very last red berries. They are not very red as time has aged them, two hawthorn and a rose hip. Little shards of pottery littered the path, who knows I might have brought home a piece that belonged to Dads family.
Another page in my square book. Some of the real specimens and my drawing in acrylic paint.


sea-blue-sky & abstracts said...

Lovely artwork, Milly and also such nice memories of your dear Dad. Bye for now, Lesley

Jill said...

What a beautiful description of your work and the memories of you Dad. And a beautiful illustration to accompany them.

Jill said...

That should read - a beautiful description of your walk....!

bubblemunch said...

Milly ... this is so beautiful. The combination of your natural finds and the shared memory of your Father - Thank you :-)

sea-blue-sky & abstracts said...

Hi Milly, there's a bright, cheery award for you on my blog!

Frances said...

Well, dear Milly, you have written a beautiful post, and I know it is marvelous valentine, sent straight to your dad.


kookaburra said...

Another lovely post. And thank you for an earlier description of sanguine for me.

Why had you never been to the farm where your dad lived even though you are in walking distance? I wish he could see your work, especially since he gave you a wonderful gift of paying attention to small beauties.

Pondside said...

What a beautiful collection.
I love red - berries, blossoms, feathers - but the red I love the best is the old red of berries in February. Mellow, rich, not brash - perfect.

Carolina said...

Hi Millie,
Finally a nice winter day!
Thanks for sharing the moments with your dad and family, that explains a lot about you :) You were very blessed for all you said, but especially for being able to recognize how blessed you are. Many people aren't able to see the blessings in their lives.
I really enjoyed your story, now I understand your paintings more. I love nature too, I love to look at those small details and show them to my kids, our love to nature come from different origins, now I can see it, but it feels very similar, I guess...
Have a happy Valentine's Day :)

Anna said...

Hello! I stumbled upon your site through another blog, and just have to say that I really love your art. You inspire me and I thank you for sharing your work with the world!

Acornmoon said...

Wouldn't it be great if all children could be exposed to nature? How lucky you were to have such a caring and wise dad.

Having just returned form London and the crowded streets and trains it is so nice to return to the gentle delights of your drawings from nature.

It was freezing cold down there too!