Molly (my juvenile Labrador) and I take our usual circular walk most mornings. It is fascinating to see the small changes that are starting to happen each day as the temperature warms and light levels increase. One of the first wood land plants to push through is what I know as ‘Lords and Ladies’ (Arum maculatum). Such a luscious green leaf – some are quite spotted and attractive. Another plant to spring up is ‘Dogs Mercury’. The Deschampsia is starting to show green amongst its dry brown wispy leaves, but the Dryopteris ferns are staying tightly curled up knuckles. The bluebell leaves are pushing up in sunny areas of wood, and buds on trees swell. Elder leaves, Hazel and Hawthorn are the earliest tree leaves to appear.
I manage to visit David Hockney’s current exhibition, ‘A Bigger Picture’, at the R.A. His ‘paintings’ are mostly of trees in his native Yorkshire landscape. They are painted in incredibly confident bright colours, a lot are very graphic and on a huge prolific scale. I am particularly drawn to the series that show an symbolic amputated tree stump, which he calls ‘Totems’, surrounded by younger trees. Here he is examining the cycle of nature. I love the ipad series that show a woods changing through the months. The colours are more subtle here and the detailed mark making is gorgeous! All very inspiring – I will have to get painting again……or maybe ipadding!