early evening sunlight

My Walk this Week 231 – Going With the Flow

My walk this week is necessarily another local one and is going with the flow in more ways than one.

The literal flow is in the Afon Camffrwd, a small local river swollen somewhat by the recent rains. A more existential flow is about me taking the walk in the first place.

Near the end of another day of regular showers the need to get out and calm my mind, exercise my body and enjoy my surroundings was obvious to me. We have to accept and deal with the current pandemic situation as best we can. While I am able to continue my work in tapestry weaving and sound as a result of a stabilisation grant from the Arts Council of Wales National Lottery Good Causes fund, I am still affected, along with everyone else, by the Covid-19 lockdown and the restrictions that go with it. It is a strange and unsettling experience for us all.

Again the soundscape for this walk is in the form of a short video, but there are some more details from my walk in the images below.

 

 

Cwmdonkin Park

My Walk this Week 229 – Making Use of Cwmdonkin Park Swansea

My walk this week is in Cwmdonkin Park in Swansea and the Autumn colours were starting to show. Many people were making use of the park on this sunny Sunday afternoon, not least because of impending tightening of coronavirus lockdown measures.

Cwmdonkin Autumn

Cwmdonkin Autumn

The coronavirus lockdowns are taking their toll in many ways and most particularly on people’s mental health. It is hardly surprising that so many take the opportunity of a sunny day to get out to local urban oases such as Cwmdonkin Park. For some it is not so simple to get out and about, even without lockdowns, but maybe the short video below can help in some small way.

There is also a full StillWalks® Autumn video on the StillWalks home page if you are interested.

deep borders

My Walk this Week 218 – Botanical

My walk this week is in the recently re-opened Swansea Botanic Garden and Singleton Park. The Botanic Garden is within the park and had been closed for the coronavirus lockdown.

Swansea Botanic Garden

And thinking of lockdowns and locks, the sound of a garden attendant locking up at an earlier time than would normally be the case, is featured in the soundscape below and took us a little by surprise. We had not been there very long but enjoyed continuing our walk in the park, taking a different route from that on our last visit.

The garden and park were looking beautiful with so many flowers on display, it was a real pleasure to be there and sit quietly for a short while looking at all the colours and listening to the birds and ambience of the area.

What would we do without these natural (albeit cultivated) spaces in our urban landscapes?

Botanic Soundscape

thistle and path

My Walk this Week 216 – Returning To What Was

My walk this week takes a look and a listen to what was at one time a railway track. Listening to the soundscape for the walk also means returning to the sounds we were used to pre-pandemic.

The old railway track could still be seen in places when we first moved here many years ago. Things have changed significantly over that time and this part of that old rail route has become a wonderful slice of wild woodland. Unfortunately I suspect its days are numbered as the ever encroaching local housing and road developments continue apace and I was sorry to find my way blocked by a building site.

The soundscape below could have been edited down further. Although there are few birds singing at this time of day, I still enjoyed the sound of the wind in the trees and even the nuances of the distant motorway traffic. Returning to what was, pre-pandemic, means inevitably more traffic on the roads, jet aeroplanes in the sky (listen carefully) and of course the sirens of police cars. This last one I decided not to include and is the point at which I stopped recording.

Old Railway Woodland Soundscape

 

My Walk this Week 214 – Park Positive

My walk this week is in Singleton Park, Swansea and took advantage of the slight relaxation in the Covid-19 lockdown measures. Whether it was right or not to do this with regard to the coronavirus pandemic, it was a very positive thing to do for the sake of my mental wellbeing.

Sheltering under the trees from the rain I took advantage of the pause in our walk and snapped a shot or two, including the crushed wild garlic that was giving off a wonderfully powerful scent.

Once the sun reappeared the clover shone like jewels in the open grassland of this expansive urban park. While the botanic garden was closed due to the difficulty of distancing, the rest of the park-scape caused no problems in this respect and everyone there respected the social distancing advice.

In the smaller Brynmill Park on our return, this was a little more problematic, but people mostly did what they could to maintain a distance and the lake there is a popular attraction.

Park-scape Sound Clip

I have not called the audio above a soundscape because recording on my iPhone as I was and that not taking well to the wind, I did not capture as much sound as I would have liked.

The media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, so please visit the website to listen to the sound clip and view the images at the same time.

marsh wild flowers

My Walk this Week 210 – Covid Walk on the Salt Marsh

My walk this week on my local salt marsh, during the Covid lock down, was different to usual. In relative terms, the footpath felt as busy as the M4 motorway which seems to have returned almost to its normal level of traffic.

salt marsh crowds

If you look carefully at the image above you can see the “crowds” in the distance. Without wanting to be too sarcastic, I should mention that there were various other families, couples and individuals using the riverside footpath. As I am used to meeting no more than one other person at most, it felt crowded to me and I veered away from my intended destination of the “church(yard) on the marshes”.

Sound levels may be returning to pre-Covid-19 levels in this area but that includes the birds as well as everything else. Just as the ambient decibels increase, so does the bird song – and there is still the beautiful sound of the wind blowing through the tall marsh grass.

Marshes Covid Walk Soundscape

The soundscape media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, please visit the website to listen to the soundscape and view the images at the same time.

Pink rose

My Walk this Week 209 – This Time Last Year

My walk this week is from this time last year when I was visiting Sunbury Walled Garden and gallery because this year I was due to have an exhibition of my audio interactive tapestry weaving. Hopefully the exhibition will happen next year instead. You can see some of my work towards this here.

A glimpse of the garden

The interactive aspect of the work was to have been tactile! While the work will still be textural – both weaving and audio – I am now having to think in a different way about how the interaction may be achieved as multiple people touching the same art works may be a problem. This may not be the result or legacy of the Coronavirus lock down but I have to consider that it may be a likely result of the pandemic and our need to maintain a social distance from each other the the things we interact with.

I may even need to consider the degree of interactivity I can provide through proximity sensors! While this changes some important aspects of my art work, I am gradually beginning to see it as an interesting challenge rather than being frustrated by it. Either way, texture will always be important to me and my work, both visually and aurally, so . . . watch this space (as they say) and in the meantime enjoy Sunbury Walled Garden.

Sunbury Gardens Soundscape

The soundscape media player does not show on the WordPress Reader, please visit the website to listen to the soundscape and view the images at the same time.

oakwood 2

My Walk this Week 204 – A Wander in the Park

My walk this week takes a wander through our local park – Coedbach Park. Along with other parks in the county of Swansea were closed for a few days once the Covid-19 lockdown started, but eh council were good enough to open them again quite quickly. It would have been a great shame not to see it Spring development.

park blossom 1

It was a beautiful sunny Sunday afternoon and I made the time for a stroll through the park – I thought I might see the ducklings my daughter had reported to me. Alas, I was only able to enjoy the spectacular blooming of the trees near the entrance and the woodland wildflowers, garlic, wood anemone and bluebells, the crooked oak trees and the sounds of the birds – poor me 😉Continue reading