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Went for a lovely walk through the wood on summer solstice night to mark the anniversary of the death of our dear daughter, Becci. It was incredibly warm and it felt so wonderful to be walking without the need for torches at 11o’clock at night. Inki was in particularly high spirits but it may have been because she was out after the 6 o’clock curfew in force whilst the birds are fledging!

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I’ve been working hard on the WEIRD WOOD multi-facetted journey, drawing all the elements together - it is rather more complicated than I first thought - like assembling a jigsaw of 2000 pieces! We’ve also been busy with bookings at the shepherd’s hut, Raven’s Retreat, due to it being half term and Bank Holiday. But there’s always time to take photos on my walks with Inki and Raven!

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So my aim at the moment is to get a Literary Agent or publisher interested in producing both coffee table books of the Inspirational Art by Nature photographs and also to create a quest book for children (and like-minded adults) by creating the photos into Illustrations, which gives them more definition. The idea is to take them on a journey through the WEIRD WOOD, introducing them to the creatures, the monsters and the pathways. These Illustrations work well

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It is interesting that we are pre-programmed to seek symmetry in the world around us. Our eyes pick out patterns which help us make sense of the world and also warn us of possible danger. (The tiger in the bush, the striped snake in the grass). Two shapes appearing to be eyes must indicate a face of some kind – human, animal, bird, insect or reptile – and that’s what enables many of the “Inspirational Art by Nature” images to stand out – our natural desire to make sense of the world. They also work on the level of displaying the beauty to be found in the patterns and designs of our natural world from the large to the minute. (Difficult that having the two words spelt the same with vastly different meanings – I suppose you could have a minute part of a minute!) Instead how about an “M”.

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One of the other motivations for taking these photographs is to take a walk with Raven, the lab/collie, and sometimes Inki, the cat. Raven has learned to be patient with me when I continually stop to take photographs and stays fairly close - which is a blessing as he is a bit of a wild one. But walking with Inki is a mixed blessing. She enjoys our company and seems reassured by Raven’s presence, although this doesn’t stop her reverting to her larger, wilder ancestors and trying to trip him up by his hind legs which he totally ignores! With me she’s content just to trip me up any way she can by keeping so close I can’t see her! Then there’s the mewing – well screaming really when she thinks she’s going to be left behind. Actually, now I think about it, she’s much worse on the recall than Raven. She can be a hundred yards away and I can call and call her and all she does is call back! Not helpful. Then she’s always ready to turn back long before we are which cuts back photographing time. But she does pose well up a tree!

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It is amazing what is revealed just by carefully looking and recording. In the process, I’ve learnt to view nature from a very different perspective and to marvel at how the glory of a dried leaf, an arrangement of twigs or stones, the slanting shape of slate rocks and the minutiae of this special environment can be transformed. Like the photograph below – a teddy bear, a butterfly, even a crab has been created by the leaves, twigs, moss and earth.

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Inspirational Art by Nature

What I find most amazing about the “Inspirational Art by Nature” series is that the photographs were taken - not only within the Woodland Trust's Gwernafon Wood – but along just two pathways within it! And I didn’t interfere at all – other than photographing them that is – each image you see was laid down by nature – I didn’t move even a single blade of grass. Todays’ offering is one of my favourites partly because I don’t remember taking it or where! I’ve given them titles to help me identify them (from 6500 images and counting!) but what you see will be your own unique perspective.

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