caralockhartsmith

stories and illustration

In praise of the Hellebore

From the autumn until today, when the plants are still in full flower, the hellebore has adorned the garden. Such an uncomplaining kind of plant, it doesn’t shed its petals, it doesn’t wither, it just goes on spreading by a few degrees here and there, and produces such elegant flowers. I feel a real affection towards these plants. My son will be given some for his garden in the autumn. I could not find any kind of an involving poem about them, but maybe I should look under “Christmas Rose” as I believe that is another title they bear; though it is now nearly May. I shall go on looking for a poem. In the meantime, thank you, hellebores, you are special in your own way.

April 26, 2022 Posted by | Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , | Leave a comment

Storm Damage 3

Sinister, shot against the sun, like a fairy story forest. I have decided I need to do some quite different drawing, and photographs of tangled branches might be part of the imagery. I need to do some looking. I was gong to self-publish “Musical Bears” this year but have decided it doesn’t feel the right time. I shall continue to work on the illustrations, whilst at the same time going off on a different tack.

March 22, 2022 Posted by | Art, Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Storm Damage 2

I shall visit this tree later in the year, to see if it has survived the ravages of the extreme weather we have had this late winter, in our usually temperate country.

March 22, 2022 Posted by | Art, Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Storm Damaged Trees

The Hirsel, a large estate that is part of Coldstream, lost 1000 trees in the storms this year. There was a notice up by the entrance to one of my usual walks saying Danger, Footpath Closed, but it was a beautiful calm spring day, and the high winds passed through some weeks back, several of them … so I bypassed the notice and took myself and my camera down the path by River Leet. There are fallen trees everywhere, but the saddest sight to me is the trees that have their tops torn off. The place is in one way like a Paul Nash painting of the battlefields of WW1; but in another way it is strange to see robins and blackbirds hopping about within the tangle of branches, and daffodils everywhere, and to hear the noise of children in the park across the other side of the water. The faintly sinister sound of chainsaws has been accompanying us for weeks. Trees are still leaning against other trees, and others have fallen across the Leet. Such chaos everywhere. Blue skies.

March 22, 2022 Posted by | Art, Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , | 4 Comments

January the First

January 1, 2022 Posted by | Art, Painting, Uncategorized | , , , , , | 2 Comments

Wishing you all a Happy Christmas

and a New Year with more delight and a lot less trouble x

December 23, 2021 Posted by | Art, Illustration, Painting, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Autumn Pond with Alligator

When I first met my husband and visited his house, I thought how pretty was the pond outside the back door of the conservatory, aka the lean-to. Whilst admiring the surrounding acers, the stone sculpture with its Zen aura, the shells and the lily leaves, I noticed this alligator on the far side of the water. It occurred to me this person might be interesting.

November 24, 2021 Posted by | Art, Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hydrangea Petals in November

Petals and leaves – the same process of fading into strange speckled intermediate stages. The garden is undergoing changes, as, tired of mowing the lawn, my husband has decided to let the grass grow He spent this freezing morning putting in miniature fruit trees. He has already scattered wild flower seed in the rich grass that grows this way and that, random but shapely like baby’s hair, looking much more beautiful than I expected. Gradually we will have a miniature orchard. His Christmas present will be a bottle of vintage port and some wildflower plugs. I fancy cowslips, that are so rare now; they should look lovely, set amongst the grass and fruit trees.

November 21, 2021 Posted by | Art, Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Willow Leaves

Fallen willow leaves, from beside the Leet, a few yards from where it flows into River Tweed.

November 19, 2021 Posted by | Art, Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

November Leaves

Quite a few Novembers have passed through my life – one of the first things I had published (in the school magazine) was a poem called November which I wrote, aged about 12 maybe, while sitting on the station platform waiting for the train home. But I can’t remember a November where I have been so fascinated by fallen leaves. I don’t really understand this. Is it because my eyes look downwards more, or is it the colours, because I am thinking of painting again? Maybe. These are, I think, leaves from some kind of a cherry, lying on the grass of a local park, Henderson Park, which is small, and full of personal memorials.

I like to scan leaves, and picked up a large handful, and because was busy threw some water on them and left them in an empty bird food bucket, in the cupboard of my workroom; and of course when I remembered them they were nowt but a soggy mess.

Perhaps it is this that so touches me, the transience of those beautiful colours.

I am trying to learn Italian, as I have told learning a new language is good for the mind, and find I am using a dried leaf as a bookmark.

November 19, 2021 Posted by | Art, Painting, Photography, Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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