Usually, public holidays here in the UK are guaranteed to be wet and have generally miserable weather – the sort where you don’t want to leave the house, never mind take your camera with you. Hopefully the weather gods are still looking at last year’s calendar, because today was a beautiful day for some outdoor photography.
We went across the border into England for a leisurely walk round the Royal Forest of Dean’s Sculpture Trail. Started in 1986, the Sculpture Trust has commissioned many artists over the years to create sculptures – both permanent and temporary – to live throughout the forest. There are currently 18 permanent sculptures that make up the trail:
- Place, by Magdelena Jetelova (1986)
- Bois Mort, by Carole Drake (1995)
- The Heart of Stone, by Tim Lees (1988)
- Black Dome, by David Nash (1986)
- Fire and Water Boats, by David Nash (1986)
- Iron Road, by Keir Smith (1986)
- Searcher, by Sophy Ryder (1988)
- In Situ, by Erika Tan (2004)
- Grove of Silence, by Ian Hamilton Finlay (1986)
- Cone & Vessel, by Peter Randall-Page (1988)
- Life Cycle, by Ingemar Thalin (2002)
- House, by Miles Davies (1988)
- Smoke Ring, by Stuart Frost (1986)
- Observatory, by Bruce Allan (1988)
- Raw, by Neville Gabie (2001)
- Cathedral, by Kevin Atherton (1986)
- Hanging Fire, by Cornelia Parker (1986)
- Melissa’s Swing, by Peter Appleton (1986)
To get the most out of a visit, be sure to buy one of the Sculpture Trail leaflets. The leaflet comes with a handy map (which makes up for the signage on the trail itself), plus more information about each of the sculptures on the trail.
I recommend parking at Beechenhurst Lodge, where there are toilets and a cafe. If you go into the cafe, try the bottled apple juice that they sell there. After three hours wandering around the Trail, it really hits the spot!
Favourite Photo From The Shoot
My photo of the sculpture “House” is my personal favourite from this visit. I don’t know why, but I don’t normally get these sort of shots with the Nikon; I normally take shots like this with my Canon Digital IXUS. I just held the camera under the sculpture, prayed that the auto-focus could find something to latch onto, and took the one frame.