Monthly Archives: July 2016

The Beechwoods – ‘The Wild Places’

The opening chapter of Robert Macfarlane’s The Wild Places is titled ‘Beechwood.  He starts: The wind was rising, so I went to the wood.  It lies south of the city, a mile from my home: a narrow nameless fragment of … Continue reading

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Beechwood Discord

Birds add natural harmonies to the Beechwoods susurrus of leaves rustling in the breeze.  But another world intrudes: Roar of an accelerating motorbike Car tyres zinging on tarmac Warning siren of an ambulance Drone of an airliner high overhead Continuous … Continue reading

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White Sands

Reading White Sands by Geoff Dyer. Engaging writing reflecting on why we travel and the lure of elsewhere, an elsewhere that does not always live up to expectations. It includes and excellent short essay (pp 99-101) on ‘sites’, especially the … Continue reading

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Beechwood Harmonies

Summer birdsong in the Beechwoods Soft, mellow cooing of wood pigeons Harsh ‘Kreek’ of a startled crow Loud disproportionate trill of a wren A great tit’s insistent ‘teechew-teechew-teechew’ Rough ‘skraak’ of a jay somewhere deep in the woods Raucous, squabbling … Continue reading

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Heffers Skeleton

Another example of the scary use of figures – in this case hardly a mannequin – here in Heffers to advertise Agatha Christie. While there I picked up a copy of The Anatomical Venus….’A disquieting volume of deftly crafted dissectable … Continue reading

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The Beechwoods

The Beechwoods is a rare piece of mature beech woodland on the southern outskirts of Cambridge. It is a vantage point from which to observe and reflect on the seemingly inexorable expansion of the high-tech City.  I’ve begun to photograph … Continue reading

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In Plain View – Final

The book of In Plain View images is now complete.  Following tweaks to a draft version (note, subtle changes to ‘clarity’ are not always very apparent in the final printed version) the books arrived this week.  The post below is … Continue reading

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Spanish Adventure, Norman Lewis

My post of 13th May 2016 said I had bought Spanish Adventure by Norman Lewis; and I reported the faint praise it received on publication.  Well, I’ve now read it and have made up my own mind.  Spanish Adventure was … Continue reading

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Automatonophobia

Sometimes mannequins deliberately have a spooky, disturbing and uncertain reality.  Many are headless, many are faceless; sometimes the head is just strange, sometimes deformed; occasionally a chimera takes centre stage.  Figures are left armless and legless; dismembered, invariably naked, body … Continue reading

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South Bank Beach

Tides are strange and magical things.  For a start, why are there two a day; and why do tidal ranges vary so much from place to place?  In London the magic creates a beach in the heart of the City … Continue reading

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