September 10, 2019


As a S.A.D. summer sufferer this past season has been pretty difficult and that is not accounting for the current appalling politics. I do not know how wildlife cope. Supposedly like humans some love it some hate it. Too hot, too humid, too noisy, too crowded and too long.   Now autumn has set in with wind, rain and fresh air I am a much happier person and less grumpy to get on with.

Most of Swifts and House Martins have left for Africa except one or two pairs who may be having second broods.   Strangely though there is also still one lone swift still floating about in the empty blue sky.

The wind has turned around to the west and brought in a refreshing autumn....what joy abounds. Winter birds are returning, Canada Geese, Lapwings and  Godwits to name a few. The recent Wirral  Wader Fest viewing migrating birds passing through on migration has been one of the best ever recorded.....and I missed it........BUT the robin has started singing again. First quietly practising in the shrubs but now loudly laying claim to the garden. This one this ear is very feisty and sees off all comers small and very large with equal vigour.  Tackling a Woodpigeon must seem like trying to shift an elephant.

The Painted Lady butterfly invasion seemed to mostly pass us by, but I did manage to spot 24 of them on a dilapidated looking buddlia behind Heswall Fire Station one baking hot day.

Gems in the Dunes

Over the summer there were several interesting outdoor artistic events aimed at adults for a change. A friend and I attended a cyanotype workshop with artist Sian Hughes and the rangers on the Ainsdale Dunes.  (Cyanotype is a photographic method of exposing coated paper to UV light and developed  with water.) 

Using wildflowers and grasses collected on the day, we processed several plates, one of which will be used in an exhibition.     Fortunately it was a very sunny and warm day otherwise it would have difficult exposing the prepared plates.

The Barn

This little hidden gem behind Heswall Bus Station sells the work of local artists and  runs  craft and art classes tutored by professionals in their own fields .  Even as a total beginner I managed a couple of decent pieces of work.  They proprietors have high hopes of extending into a community art centre with eco cafe.

Fortunately a lot of my tools and inspiration from printmaking is very transferable and useful.
So grunge is still in.

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