For the majority of this year I have been working on what I call my ‘Meadows Project’. This is a continuation of the work that I started back in 2017 with my installation ‘Within These Walls’ and continued with a couple new prints inspired by haytime in the Yorkshire Dales as part of ‘View from the Fells: In the Footsteps of Marie Hartley’. As a result of a conversation with Fiona Rosher at the Dales Countryside Museum last summer, I’m delighted to say that I’ll be showing all the work created so far and a lot of new prints at the museum in the summer of 2023. It will be a joint exhibition with the DCM exhibiting their information and artefacts associated with hay making in the Yorkshire Dales.
I’m fortunate to have a number of excellent upland meadows very close to my home and I’ve been visiting a couple of them almost daily. To date, I’ve identified over 50 grass and wildflower species and numerous invertebrates. I’ve spent some lovely meditative days sketching some of the plants from life using Faber Castell Aquafaber pencils.
These drawings will be reference for new prints and I have the germ of an idea for a new installation piece. I’m also planning a series of black and white linocuts that tell the story of a contemporary dales meadows in a similar way that the gorgeous wood engravings created in the 1930s and 40s by Marie Hartley MBE showed us how haytime was done in the last century. Now that the hay has been cut, I will concentrate on developing some of the new work and plan to share that with you over the coming months.