Sarah McIntyre (jabberworks) wrote,
Sarah McIntyre

keston vale tree sketches

Yesterday Stuart and I went hiking in Kent, on part of the London LOOP, and spent half an hour on a bench drawing this tree. I haven't done one of my tree drawings for awhile, and I'm feeling a bit rusty at it. So I didn't try to get too much detail, and did it in pen (no pencil), just tried to get a rough feel for lumps and bumps of the tree. Not too bad, but I really need more practice.

And here are our sketches, in situ, looking over Keston Vale in Kent. Stuart did one, too. Hurrah!

Here's Stuart's pencil sketch:

This tree looks cool, but the fallen one next to it, the Wilberforce Oak, is way more famous. There's a plaque behind it, explaining that William Wilberforce wrote a diary entry in 1788, mentioning it: At length, I well remember after a conversation with Mr. Pitt in the open air at the root of an old tree at Holwood, just above the steep descent into the vale of Keston, I resolved to give notice on a fit occasion in the House of Commons of my intention to bring forward the abolition of the slave-trade".

A family walked up to it and the dad enthused, "This tree is where Wilberforce and Pitt decided to abolish slavery!" And his son looked at the site and said, sceptically, "Like, they built a whole bench to it?"

I loved this angel grave in Farnborough churchyard. So wonderfully over-the-top melodramatic. I posted it on Facebook and Rob Davies remarked: It reminds me of my daughter when at the age of five, got so excited at her birthday party she threw herself on the floor in a mock faint ...and we just left her.
Julia Scheele commented: I keep on thinking about teenage girls throwing themselves dramatically on their beds in a crying strop cause they're not allowed to go to the party. "This is so unfaaaaaaiiiiirrrr! All the OTHER girls are allowed to go on DATES! My life is OVER! I HATE you!"
Jenny Page wrote: Perhaps this angel has just lost her Oyster card.
And FPI's Joe Gordon posted a link to his album of cemetery photos.

Check out this amazing yew tree, also in Farnborough churchyard, planted in the 1640's.

I like how this photo of Clockhouse Farm came out, very moody.

We trotted through some formal gardens at High Elms House, formerly owned by Sir John Lubbock, First Lord Avebury:

And then found ourselves in countryside that looked like something out of fiction.

Okay, okay, WHO named this road? I am sure I am not the first immature person to have my photo taken there.

And, at last, Stuart and I found it, the source of the Ravensbourne River. I was sort of hoping it would be a big moment, like discovering the source of the Nile. I'd seen some guys in fab clothing do it when my dad took me as a kid to see Mountains of the Moon. (It was R-rated, so I felt very grown up.)

But our discovery was a slight let down, and we fought no battles. ...Oh, well.

But a bit further downstream, we discovered Keston Ponds, with their slightly Lothlorian feel, so that made it all worthwhile.

We started our walk from Petts Wood station and ended in Hayes, where there were four of these 700-year-old oaks. Pretty cool.

Tags: hiking, trees

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