River Tawe and the Copper Jack

Copperopolis 2c – Old Engines and A Trip Up the River

The rusty old engines I found as I turned a corner at the end of my walk this week around the old industrial buildings of Copperopolis in Swansea, brought a big smile to my face. The colours, textures and patterns of the old wheels and screws, cables and rails are wonderful.

Rusty wheel

The boat trips up the River Tawe pass by this old historic area of Swansea but I had a much better view of abandoned machinery than those on the Copper Jack. If you look back atContinue reading

Yellow flowering broom

A Glimpse of the Past – Copperopolis Part 1c

Ending my observations on this first part of my walk around one of the old industrial sites of Swansea’s Copperopolis history, you only get a glimpse of that industrial past. The abandoned metal swizzle below is not necessarily a part of that past but it was there and made me think of some of the natural forms to be seen in the nature that is gradually taking over here.

abandone twizzle

The natural twizzles had in fact almost completed unfurled themselves in the new growth of yellow broom or green ferns growingContinue reading

hidden buildings

The Nature of Copperopolis – Part 1b

Exploring one of Swansea’s old industrial areas on my walk this week, I am focused on how nature continues to take over Copperopolis. The old Hafod-Morfa Copperworks has plants growing out of its walls now – it closed down in 1980 and nature seems to be doing a fairly efficient job of reclamation as 1980 doesn’t seem all that long ago to me (I must be getting old!).

footpath to history

But the wall plants weren’t the only things of interest as the shapes, patterns and textures of the old walls were also caught my eye. From theContinue reading

ruins 1

My Walk this Week – Old Copperopolis Part 1a and an Argument For Nature

My walk this week is the first stage of my visual exploration of local nature and an old and world renown aspect of Swansea’s history – Copperopolis. Click the link if you would like to know more about that history. In the past I have only photographed elements of this industrial history and the nature overtaking it from across the River Tawe and it was good to take the opportunity to look a bit closer at how nature takes over all that we leave behind.

through the trees

It is good to see how little impact we have on the the natural world, at least in the longer term of our lifespans – even multiple generations of our lives are only a snippet of time in the life of the planet or universe. It is also excitingContinue reading

Swansea urban scene

Urban Walk – Second Side of the Triangle

Looking at some of the patterns and features on my triangular urban walk this week, the second side of the triangle provided me with a number of everyday aspects of the city with, to me, points of visual interest. The angles and perspectives of architectural features, when looked at on their own and viewed without the context of the wider urban environment, become simply lines, shapes and patterns and can be seen as works of abstract art.

angled steps

Those lines and shapes are reflected in the design of murals on the walls of the Elysium artists’ studios but opposite this is an apparent anomaly – Continue reading

Nature and construction

My Walk this Week – Architecture of An Urban Triangle

My walk this week takes a look at and listen to a small urban triangle in Swansea, South Wales. I had been looked at the patterns of tower block scaffolding on a number of occasions in passing and thought it would be good to find the opportunity to take a closer look. So, duly prepared with my kit on a dry day I set out to explore both the scaffolding and other features of a small area that includes both the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery and on the opposite side of the road, UWTSD Swansea College of Art.

Swansea College of Art

There are three different eras of architectural design in this first stage (or side of the triangle) of my walk – the classical style of the Glynn Vivian and the College of Art, the more functional style of the early ’70s in the Oldway House tower block and the mixture of block and glass in the new entrance  to the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery.Continue reading

Mynydd Gelli winter view

My Walk this Week – A Sprinkling of Winter

We rarely get any snow in the small town where I live and so when I awoke to find a thin Winter sprinkling in the garden, I assumed that there would be more of it all around us on higher ground and I prepared to take a walk later in the morning.

Mynydd Gelli tree

So I was surprised to find naked trees and moorland when I set off up one of the hills in the lower reaches of the Mawr, the upland area just north of Swansea. No white blankets to be seen,Continue reading

floor decoration

My Walk this Week – Architecture at The Glynn Vivian

My walk this week is not in a natural environment but instead it is around the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery and Museum – unless you consider our need for creativity a part of nature, which I do! It is an essential part of our existence that we observe the things around us and it is a part of my own particular nature to enjoy observing what we call art, and also on this occasion, architecture and design.

Glynn Vivian Art Gallery and Museum

The architecture of the original building is formal, balanced, symmetrical. The newer wing is made in concrete and the even newer entrance is largely glass. This is perhaps fitting as the building opposite also has a new glass extension as entrance to Swansea College of Art and the original design of this building reflects that of the Glynn Vivian.Continue reading

Christmas decorations

Christmas Lights and Lights at Christmas

My walk this week, being in an early morning urban landscape, remained dark almost to the end of the walk. Some of the Christmas lights of Swansea were to be seen creating abstract growth patterns against the night sky, but there were more abstract patterns than this to be seen in the lighting at this early hour.

Christmas lighting

Some long exposure and movement of the lens allowed the traffic to create light trails en route to daytime and the darkness in other areasContinue reading