gatepostgatepostCoxley Valley, 5.30 p.m., 45ºF, 8ºC: At the entrance to the woods this rough hewn stone gatepost stands by the beck next to an ivy-covered alder. Fresh leaves of wild garlic grow behind it, escaping being trampled on a wide and muddy stretch of the path.

There’s a bit of an evening chorus amongst the birds – the wistful robin, the monotonous wood pigeon and the powerful projection of the wren – but when the blackbird starts singing we’re in a different league: melodious, mellow and relaxed.

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  1. Love be the ‘gatepost’ sketch! My dream is to learn to sketch like you do, at least in a minor league way. What are your feelings on watercolor pencils?

    1. Thank you Al. I’ve enjoyed trying out my watercolour pencils. I used to use them mainly to add texture in the final stages of a watercolour illustration, using them over dry watercolour to give a textured effect of bark or fur etc, but they’re really handy for rapid work in the field and you’ve got the option of using them dry like regular crayons or dabbing them with water for an instant watercolour effect. You can also use them wet in wet for a rather unpredictable effect.

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