Light is the magic in a garden. The most wonderful garden in the world can struggle to excite in rain and gloom. And spring and autumn do special light: because the sun is low, suddenly unexpected things are illuminated. And you can get dramatic shadows.
Shadows are not an aspect of gardens that are discussed much and I think it’s easy to walk round a garden not noticing them. So I’ve done some noticing …
And realised that you can play with shadows on purpose if you create the surface. We didn’t do that deliberately with the ruin, but we quickly noticed what a bonus we have when the leaves are off the trees and the sun shines. This is the wall on the inside of the ruin in dull light:
A wonderful flat, empty space for the sun to write on. Like this:
or like this:
Flat surfaces can arise unexpectedly. This happened when the sun shone, in a blue sky, through the trees on to the frozen surface of the Reflecting Pool:
Sometimes the shape of something is the source of a good shadow. This could have been better if I’d chosen my moment better, but it’s the shadow of our fence –
and, at the right hand side, of me. Taking photos of shadows brings up the problem of how to eliminate yourself from the picture. (Sometimes you can find a shadow bigger than yourself to hide in)
Hedges, topiary and clipping all create wonderful shadows –
Man made structures make good shadows:
But not all good shadows have to be sharp edged. I think that the light and the shadow in both these scenes adds a touch of joy to the pictures:
Though – it’s the fact of both the shadow and the light that creates the sparkle, I think.
Like this – it’s all a hymn to the returning sun, really: