Woodland pond reflections

My Walk this Week 181 – Natural Benefits

My walk this week is one of the most enjoyable I have had lately – the benefits of natural elements within an urban landscape are not to be underestimated.

Coedbach Woods

Currently I am having to work 4 days/40 hours+ with a well known online supplier (needs must and all that) which means going out before dawn and getting in after dark while spending the whole working day indoors. As a means of compensating for this, I have started using my StillWalks videos at the end of the working day, before going home, and they definitely help.

So when I found myself on a bright sunny Sunday morning walking through the local countryside and woods, it felt so goodContinue reading

garden focus

My Walk this Week 172 – Wandering Round the Garden

My walk this week took me wandering round the garden on a bright August day.  I was sitting watching the birds flutter and fight over the feeder outside my studio where I was weaving and thinking about the similar aural textures of my activity and that of the birds.

sparrows fluttering

If you listen to the soundscape below you may understand what I mean, but it could just be my imagination. Being able to get out, or at least look at, the natural environments around me is essential to my wellbeing.Continue reading

lakeside

My Walk this Week 168 – Waterside Wildflowers

My walk this week takes a further look at wildflowers, this time they are around the lake at The Waterside. I admit I do not know either the common names or the Latin of most of the flowers, but that does not spoil my enjoyment of them one tiny little bit.

waterside wildflowers

Their beauty and the ecology associated with them is something I appreciate without knowing the details. I suspect the house martins speed-flying low across the surface of the lake, darting left, right, up and down to catch insects inContinue reading

My Walk this Week 133 – Format Change

Hi everyone, for a number of reasons I have decided that My Walk this Week is going to be posted just once a week . . . on Fridays. So I hope you will look forward to Friday for my next walk which presents the sights and sounds of an Autumn woodland – see the image below as some encouragement to look, read and listen to the post.

The posts will still include a soundscape for the walks and I hope to encourage you to click the play button for these and then browse the images in sequence. This does not give the same experience as a StillWalks® video, which I will soon be making available through membership, but I hope they are still enjoyable and give the opportunity to take five minutes out from the hubbub of modern life.

woodland footpath

 

Worm's Head, Gower

My Walk this Week 129 – Rhossili from the Archives

My walk this week shows images from my archive and a walk along Rhossili Down at the end of the Gower Peninsula in South Wales.

looking down on the bay

For all the changes in environmental circumstances from day to day or even hour to hour, these photos from 2014 cannot show any potential differences in the underlying structure and general appearance of the place. The pace of change on a geological time scale is not the same as our lives and although it is true that we sometimes see rocks fall from a cliff or even cliffs collapse as a result of erosion from the sea, the overall changes can be almost imperceptible.Continue reading

Fleet Bay

Calm Reflection – Gull Contemplation

A calm, hazy, hot day and the stone buoys that mark the entrance to a small disused harbour reflect in the water and a gull appears in contemplation of its quiet surroundings.

stone buoy 1

Like the gull, I too sit in contemplation of the scene and objects around me – stopping from time to time on all my walks to look and listen and absorb the sights and sounds, the textures, patterns and colours of the environment and feel the connections I have to all that is there.

Whether the connection is slow and seemingly timeless, as in the wrinkles and folds seen in the surfaces of rocks, or quicker, like the more immediate ripples of the water blown by the breeze, pushed and pulled by the sun and moon along with Earth itself (see Tides), the influence on me of these interconnections is sometimes obvious and noticeable, sometimes utterly imperceptible, but there nonetheless.

Imperceptible or not, I am aware that they exist and enjoy contemplating, or perhaps imagining, the ties that hold me (rather than bind me) to the intricacies of the planet and all that exists and lives upon it.

Contemplating Quiet

Red water grasses

Fluffy, Furry and Fuzzy – New Edgeland Growth

The edgeland of Newport which I was exploring on my walk this week were partly coloured by industry, but Spring knows no bounds and prompts all plant life to new growth at this time of year.

Spring growth?

And so, looking away from some of the other aspects of this liminal industrial space, I took a closer look at some of the different wasteland plants that were coming to life around me. The buds and seed heads were fluffy, furry and fuzzy as they set out for the sun against the red earth and water of the ponds in this abandoned area of the Newport Levels.

I never did get to the official Newport Wetlands but was very happy to see this less cared for environment where there was plenty of evidence of man but no man to be seen.

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

Focus on rust

My Walk this Week – All A Bit Marshy

My walk this week is a bit marshy, but not boggy! I hadn’t been down to our local salt marshes on the Loughor Estuary for a while and as the weather was unusually dry,  it was an opportunity to see how things had changed as they undoubtedly would have done in some ways.

I never get tired of seeing this environment – it has the quality of peacefulness and tranquility when it is dry even with the motorway traffic in the background. The day was still with little or no movement other than the slow flow of the half full river as the tide receded. The subtle swirls of the current gave a gentle distortion to the reflected pattern of clouds, but there was unquestionable evidence in the form of gaping cracks that there had been slippage of the river bank as a result of high tides and fast flowing water.

A makeshift rusty barrier was constructed as an extension to the wooden fence that prevents cattle reaching an area where the marsh grasses give refuge and residence to some of the birds that enjoy this habitat. I disturbed what I think was a beautiful looking corncrake but wasn’t quick enough with my camera to get a shot of it.

 

valley fog

Sunlight, Sheep and Fog

Gaining the top of the hill on my walk this week from fog to sunlight, I was followed by a flock of hopeful sheep looking expectantly at me – I suspect the farmer was due or perhaps the sheep though he was overdue!

Goppa sheep

My route took me past familiar objects both natural and man made. The rhododendrons perhaps have an element of both – they are natural but not native to the UK and can take over a whole hillside as they have in this location.Continue reading