Changing Seasons – January

I mentioned earlier in the month that I would be illustrating the natural world close to home this year – a sort of photographer’s nature journal. I have also decided to link it to the Changing Seasons Photography Challenge, hosted this year by Su Leslie. A very talented Kiwi lady who lives in Auckland.

January 2018 has been a washout month in more ways than one. If not raining, then the winds have been so ferocious as to keep me indoors. The countryside lanes are full of mud from the heavy tractors; the underground spring is so full that it has become overground and the lane now a stream. Though unlike England’s usual grey and brown winter palette it is still very green.

On January 6th I see Alice in a frosty field as the early morning sun’s rays reach her. We rarely get frost this far west.

Fields are full of gulls, sheltering away from the blustery coast. Fat sheep graze on the rich green grass, unperturbed. A rare blue sky mid-month. A pastel feathery sky with crows flying home to roost. A neighbour’s Yucca casting pretty shadows in the twilight hours.

The evening stroll which ended with a golden sunset.

Hedgerows are still bare. Not even any evidence of leaf buds emerging. Trees are bowed and blown by the south-westerlies.

I search for colour: Gorse in the hedgerow down the lane; winter heliotrope is beginning to bloom along the verge where last year’s common hogweed is still flowering; navelwort, pennywort or penny pies (Umbilicus rupestris) and Common ivy (Hedera helix) greening up among the crevices on the stone walls.

Several dramatic skies. All featuring Rogers Tower, a folly built on Castle an Dinas (Penwith) hill where there are the remains of an ancient hill fort with three rings of defence that go all the the way around. (Not to be confused with a hill fort with the same name near St Columb Major)

I will end the month with a rather foggy Alice, taken only yesterday. A familiar sight as the mist creeps over the hill.

The Changing Seasons | January


  1. Lucid Gypsy says:

    Lovely country scenes, except the grotty fog! How did the shadow get to be blue?

    1. Heyjude says:

      I live a lot of my days in the grotty fog! What comes of being surrounded by sea. I don’t know why the shadow looks blue. It was very low sunlight by that time and a ‘white’ wall. Perhaps I need to adjust the white balance.

  2. Even in winter, you’re finding so much beauty. It looks beautiful, but rather chilly. 🙂

    1. Heyjude says:

      Not as cold as the rest of the country and often quite warm in the sun and out of the wind. It is the wind chill factor that counts and today felt very cold.

  3. pommepal says:

    A truly delightful post Jude. You have captured a month of beauty in your Cornwall. From the emerging flowers to the sheep and birds and that lovely misty shot of Alice, and Of course the gorgeous skies.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I was surprised at how many decent sunsets I got in January. It felt much less.

  4. You mentioned “a very talented Kiwi lady who lives in Auckland.” You also showed a picture of gorse, which I’ve seen in only one place: New Zealand, where the plant is an invasive nuisance:

    Good for you that you can enjoy it where it’s native.

    1. Heyjude says:

      Mad isn’t it how we used to transport plants and animals around without giving a thought to what might happen.

      1. Yes, it’s sad. My cynical default rule as I drove around New Zealand was: If you see a wildflower, it’s not native. The rule almost always proved correct, alas.

  5. And what a gorgeous natural world it is Jude. What a glorious walk through your wintery Cornwall, and what a cold and muddy winter it’s been here in Somerset too. Rain, rain and more rain. But we have had lots of frost too, unlike last year. Proves how cold it’s been if you’ve had frost down your way too. Brrrr. Gorgeous photos as always and lovely narrative. Looking forward to viewing your world through the changing seasons my friend 🙂 xxx

    1. Heyjude says:

      Maybe you could join in too Sherri? Be a nice way to record your journey in your new home. I think much of the UK has had a lot of rain this winter, my daughter has complained about it. No doubt there will still be hose-pipe bans somewhere in the country during the summer.

      1. Haha…yes, it’s one thing or the other isn’t it? We have all this rain and then we miss a day or few and out comes the ban. Crazy. Yes, that does sound like a good idea. At the stage of discovering what lies beneath all the debris and ‘gone over’ plants in our new garden and surroundings. Delighted to see some bulbs protuding, and some in my pots too, from last year, as this year I didn’t manage to plant any. Mum did though, I honestly don’t know how she did it!! Hmmm…I feel inspired now for my next post, will take a look at the link, thanks Jude! PS I emailed you, hope you got it 🙂 xxx

        1. Heyjude says:

          Got the E – will reply soon 🙂

        2. Great! No rush, just glad you got it 🙂

  6. Dina says:

    It’s a lovely idea for a photo documentary. I especially like the sunsets and most of all the one from January 20, maybe because they were rather rare during our stay. 🙂 Alice always looks good, Jude. Wonderful impressions once again. Xx

    1. Heyjude says:

      I haven’t seen many sunsets since! But we have had some sunny days – still windy and very cold!

  7. J > Wonderful to have so much form and colour in winter. Something we miss in the Outer Hebrides – too undeveloped, too wild, which is lovely in summer, but in winter means everything looks formless and drab.

    1. Heyjude says:

      I must admit it is nice to look out the windows at green fields and hills rather than the normal grey/brown winter palette.

  8. Su Leslie says:

    What a gorgeous gallery of shots Jude. My iPad seems to dislike WordPress more than I thought (or vice versa) since I was sure I’d posted a comment here a couple of days ago. Sigh. Thank you for your very kind words. I love the idea of your journal and am so glad you’re sharing it here. 🙂

    1. Heyjude says:

      We have spoken. Maybe it was on YOUR post?

  9. Su Leslie says:

    I think you’re right. Don’t know if I’m coming or going at the moment 🤔

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