Spring is just around the corner, now

I haven’t blogged for a few weeks now, and isn’t it funny to notice how suddenly the air changes in February? Charlie and I were up in Scotland only 2 weeks ago – and somehow the world still felt wintry.  Beautiful grey skies and the softest palette.  Shades of green and grey….
A different light, as always, in Dorset, the following week – more muted, the air is less clear, but the same palette – fog, brown, green.
Snowdrops everywhere in the churchyard and garden.
The sun bought everything to light the next day… And that afternoon we sat outside in balmy sunshine after lunch…. A beautiful sunset that evening.  The next morning I had an early start and it’s been a full and busy week. How time flies by?  But yesterday, I had the happiest day. I was up in Cambridge, reconnecting with a rather long-lost goddaughter Amelia, who I think about an awful lot but for one reason and another haven’t seen for years and years. We had the NICEST day.  I met her at her college, then we walked through beautiful Cambridge to lunch in a great little pub, absolutely the best, and then, even more of a treat, she’d booked tickets for the house tour at Kettle’s Yard.

If you don’t know Kettle’s Yard, you must go. It’s so many years since I’ve been.  The home of Jim and Helen Ede, for many decades, it became a beacon of civilised painting, music and interiors, a sort of magical reality. Of course I have never forgotten how much I love it there, but gosh it was good to go back. So many beautiful objects, so lovingly juxtaposed, with so many remarkable pictures, drawings and sculptures, and fragments of life.  Dream-like paintings everywhere.  The clouds lifted and the was streaming in.  Looking down to the door that led into the 1970s extension by Leslie Martin.  In the attic: The gallery extension –  Can anyone tell me about the floor?  Was it made of reclaimed boards?
Jim’s files – beautiful. 

The setting sun on the little cottage – the garden filled with spring bulbs, the tree coming into blossom – something I noticed all over suburbia as I was driving over to Ampthill to see my friends Tim & Todd, and Ruth, for the evening…. this morning, the birds were singing so loudly… and this is the weekend that I’ve noticed that it’s really light in the mornings, and in the evenings all over again.

Someone once commented on this blog (or it could have been instagram) – “Autumn arrives in the morning, Spring arrives one evening”.  I know exactly what they meant.  It may not be quite here, but it’s just around the corner now.


Your photography and all that you capture is truly salve for the soul. I do wish you would consider publishing a book, perhaps a lovely coffee table type. Would so love this! I was surprised your black dog went for a swim in what must have been cold water! Enjoyed and somehow comforted by all the outdoor and landscape images. The cottage was interesting and lovely. Thank you for sharing as always…love from Texas, Kathie Johnson

Kathie Johnson

I was at kettles yard last week, too, such a peaceful and beautiful place. (Lunch at their cafe is pretty nice too).


Thank you so much for the very beautiful photos of Kettle’s Yard. I visited 4 years ago and unfortunately lost all my photos so I am thrilled to have yours especially the ones of details such as the old engraved wine glass full of feathers. I also appreciate the muted spring colours in the Dorset and Scottish landscapes, but don’t the three doughty dogs feel the cold as they plunge into the sea? The photos of them enjoying themselves together are wonderful.

Thank you again


Susan King

Seeing Jim’s house was super special. Thank you.

Janey Pugh

Dear Ben,
What an avid eye you always have. Don’t you adore “balmy sunshine” days? We have them here in North Carolina this time of year, too! Many thanks for your posts.

Chet Hunt

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