I love Lunaria annua, with its translucent paper discs and silhouetted seeds. This bunch of seed heads were harvested from the scrub at the edges of the Old French House and poked into a big pot in the hallway. That was eight years ago now – and the seed-heads remain there, likely with a fine veil of spider webs by now.
Tag: The Old House Candle Company
Throwback Friday #122 ‘Widow’s House Lights’ (2013)
Another off-cut from early 35mm experiments out in the sultry gloom of the environs of the old French house, from the summer of 2013. There’s little doubt you could produce commensurate effects by layering-up images in Photoshop – an old house composited together with a squiggle of digital light – but the analogue mechanics behind the production of this moment include a clunky old film camera, a camping light encased in an empty blue water bottle on the end of a piece of string, and a human being whirling it about while dashing from one side of the composition to the other – and much to the consternation of the local wildlife!
Throwback Friday #121 ‘Lawn Sphere’ (2013)
An early foray into all things glowy and mysterious from the summer of 2013, working with 35mm film and a rather antiquated camera. This photograph was taken out in the dark arena of rough grass and old trees beyond the shambolic terrace of the old French house, where ‘noises off’ included the indignant hooting of owls and other, less identifiable rustlings and the cracking of unseen twigs under the weight of unseen things…
Throwback Friday #99 Poplars (2016)
A particular view from a particular spot in a particular place: a line of poplar trees, bringing with it a rush of other sensorial associations; a breeze as dry and heated as from a baker’s oven, the gentle chuck-chucking of soporific chickens, and the prickle of skin that’s likely seen too much sun for one day.
Throwback Friday #94 The Widow’s House (2020)
With its back tight up against the rise of the woods, and its chalky face looking out over the meadow, the Widow’s House is effortlessly photographic – or do I mean, cinematic? Every time I visit France, I take another photograph of this silent, empty dwelling, drawn to it like an illustration in a book of fairy tales that both delights and spooks.
Throwback Friday #92 French Town, Evening (2009)
I was sitting in the garden of a small, rustic restaurant in rural France when this photograph was taken, seated under a large tree with coloured lights threaded through its branches and drinking from a small cold glass of Pineau. The sky was pink, my camera struggling with the failing light, and so producing softness and imprecision and strange halos, and giving me this nicely illustrative result.
Throwback Friday #91 The Old French House, Tableau (2009)
A different take on the old French house for this Friday’s trip in the time-machine. This image from 2009 looks like the aftermath of some terrible row or marital stand-off, when, in fact, it’s nothing of the sort, just a moment captured between two people. Seconds later, my husband and I were probably laughing at some rubbish joke (his, not mine obviously). As it stands, there is a richness of the light and shadow here, and a tension in the tableau, and a filmic vibe that puts me in mind of the paintings of Edward Hopper.
Throwback Friday #90 France (2009)
From all the way back in 2009, some reminders of a happy place, and of late summer days, and very simple pleasures, and of time, slowing.
Throwback Friday #82 Horse Chestnut (2011)
I’m slightly torturing myself with this image, taken in some dusty French town in the late summer of 2011. I can almost feel the stored heat coming off that chalky white wall…
Throwback Friday #80 Two Bowls (2011)
Taken back in the Summer of 2011, these photographs capture a very particular atmosphere of a favourite place. To create the soundtrack for these images, I’d need to combine the gentle – sometimes raucous – clucks of dusty, restless chickens coming from the farmyard next door with the buzz of a nearby cicada. I might include the whispering of the leaves in the line of poplar trees at the bottom of the hill, and the buzz of wasps, hungry for the sugars produced by the scant grapes on the old vine. Much harder to convey would be that special dry heat blowing in through the open shutters, sometimes bringing with it neat convoys of swallows, the birds circling the glass lamp before darting quickly back out of the window.