The Lark ascending. The Sussex Weald from Devils Dyke Season Fall
‘The Lark ascending. The Sussex Weald from Devils Dyke Season Fall’.
Panoramic view of the Sussex Weald and the South Downs in the distance with a lark ascending.
Panoramic format. Print size 124 x 30.5 cm approx. Signed print from a limited edition of 100. From original ink drawing to which I apply colour digitally. Printed on fine art paper using archival inks.
Devils Dyke and the Sussex Weald
Devils Dyke is England’s deepest and widest dry valley from the Ice. The painted Constable described it as ‘the grandest view of the World’. The view I portray looks down onto the Sussex Weald confined by the South and in the distance the North Downs and even the Isle of Wight that can be seen on clear days.
The Lark ascending
The summer or 2019, one clear day my friend Eros and I had a picnic in this exact location. Devils Dyke is only twenty minutes outside Brighton. It had been in my mind for some time to depict this view. We sat on the grass with our sandwiches then we heard it first. I instantly recognise the song of a lark, and instinctively I found myself looking up scrutinising the sky. Up there, the lark held its song in the air.
Can you spot the two larks in this print? As it happens in nature you will have to put some effort to find them. Larks in Mythology and literature have several meanings, they stand for daybreak as in Shakespeare’s Sonnet 29 “Like to the lark at break of day arising / From sullen earth sings hymns at heaven’s gate; ..”
Ralph Vaughan Williams’s The Lark Ascending
This romance for violin and orchestra, counts as one of Vaughan’s most popular musical works. It was inspired by George Meredith’s poem of the same name about the song of the skylark. The composer began working on the piece in 1914, just before the outbreak of the First World War. In its original form the work was scored for violin and piano but in 1920 Vaughan Williams arranged it for violin and orchestra, which is the version most often performed today.
Bellow you can read an excerpt of George Meredith’s poem.
“He rises and begins to round,
He drops the silver chain of sound,
Of many links without a break,
In chirrup, whistle, slur and shake,
For singing till his heaven fills,
‘Tis love of earth that he instils
And ever winging up and up,
Our valley is his golden cup,
And he the wine which overflows
to lift us with him as he goes;
He is, the dance of children, thanks
Of sowers, shout of primrose banks,
And eye of violets while they breathe;
All these the circling song will wreathe…
Till, lost on his aërial rings
In light… and then the fancy sings.”
Other prints . Natural Landscapes of the South East
All things considered The South Downs National Park has an inherent beauty that has inspired artists for centuries. Without doubt I am in this category. Correspondingly if you follow the link below you will be able to see some of my prints where I portray the beauty of the natural landscapes around us. Countryside and Coastal Landscapes.