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Posts tagged ‘Leaves’

Yet more praise for Mallorca’s awe-inspiring autumn

Now before your eyes roll upwards as you cast an initial glimpse over yet another post dedicated to Mallorca’s autumn, allow me to excuse my inexhaustible passion for the season as it exists on this island. For coming from England, autumn is an altogether damper affair, and while there are moments when the sun shines and the colours of the trees shine through, by that time, most of the leaves are already sludge on the pavement after the preceding days of rain; and then of course there are the howling winds which have pushed them there.

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Here in Mallorca, autumn is a very different story. I’ve often seen pictures of the perfect autumn images – trees totally transformed into shades of orange and red, glowing like fire under a crisp blue sky. But I had never experienced such an idealised season before I came to Mallorca. And here, you benefit not just from the beauty which results from consecutive days of sunshine, but also the little quaint villages whose ochre stone walls and green shutters work alongside the autumn shades as though they had been meticulously selected for the purpose..

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This union of natural and manmade autumnal magic was no more obvious than on a recent visit to the stunning little village of Valldemossa; a mountainous retreat whose cluster of houses in a deep mountain valley has become the very picture-postcard image of Mallorca. And with good reason, for it’s one of those villages which is utterly quaint at every turn, and at every time of the year… no more so than in autumn, surely my most beloved season in Mallorca.

The Largest Tree in Palma de Mallorca

Despite the inherent disruptions entailed by a house move such as ours, it brings with it its new routines, and I love nothing more than the excitement of getting used to a new way of life. And for us, our new area brings an exposure to Palma’s best cafe culture, views of its beautiful leafy river, and a new daily walk to work which takes me through some of the old town’s most charming streets and across its beautiful tree-lined avenues.

But for me, the most beautiful feature of my daily commute is my route past what must be the largest tree in all of Palma de Mallorca. Sitting in the walled gardens alongside the magnificent building of the Consell of Mallorca, this tree is beyond human or even natural dimensions. Its trunk must be at least 4 metres in diameter, and its sprawling roots could themselves be benches facilitating a cosy spot in the shade. Meanwhile its vast branches create a leafy canopy which must be over 100 metres across, and thus it fills the entirety of the square it rests in.

Its those beautiful branches which take centre stage in this photographic post – a true natural gem in the heart of urbanised Palma.

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The last greens of Summer

The official start of autumn is almost upon us, and although here in Mallorca we still enjoy days of hot humid sunshine, there is a definite sense of autumnal anticipation in the air. Although the trees are not yet brown, the leaves have already metamorphosed from the rich forest green of summer to a lighter almost translucent lime green, and on the occasional tree you can already see the edges of the leaves gradually give in to a golden manifestation.

And while the onset of autumn, and the winter thereafter, is not a prospect which fills me with joy, there is a real beauty to the melancholy which fills the streets of Palma de Mallorca as the high season comes to an end. Businesses, packed all summer, start to breathe a sigh of relief for the rest which is just around the corner; plants re-emerge freshly abundant after months without rain and water; and long dappled shadows dance amongst a decidedly warmer golden sunlight, which streams through the dying leaves like a last embrace before their inexorable descent.

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It is the beauty of this time which I have attempted to capture with this small set of photos, just from strolling around the streets near my home. Here in Palma, we are not quite in autumn, and the colours are not yet that characteristic autumnal auburn and gold. These are the last greens of summer.

All photos and written content are strictly the copyright of Nicholas de Lacy-Brown © 2015 and The Daily Norm. All rights are reserved. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of the material, whether written work, photography or artwork, included within The Daily Norm without express and written permission from The Daily Norm’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

Autumn Inspires | Photos (Part 1) – What lies beneath

Most artists, photographers and general life enthusiasts will find a shared enthusiasm for the enriching visual changes which the season of Autumn brings in its wake. Like the heat from a furnace being blown slowly over the landscapes below, green summer leaves are turned a shade of burnished bronze and cherry red; the once verdant grassy planes become scattered with pepperings, and clusters of fallen leaves, and dropping from trees like a windfall scattering the treasures from a Christmas tree, are apples and acorns, conkers and chestnuts of every conceivable shade of red and brown and orange, and shaped both shiny and smooth, as well as precariously spiky. Of course Autumn isn’t always a pleasure, not least on those gloomy wet and windy days, when the treasures falling from the trees very quickly become a water saturated mush mixed in with a cocktail of mud and rotten leaves, however when the sun shines on Autumn, and those oranges and reds are offset against a cerulean blue sky, the gems of this season truly sparkle.

Last Sunday was one such day, when the sun shone almost strong enough to feel like Summer, and the colours of autumn, though slow to take hold (given that our Spring this year started in around June, we probably can’t expect to see any significant Autumn changes until the end of November at the earliest) started glimmering in the enhanced morning light. Bemoaning all of those times when I have come across little Autumn gems without a camera in my pocket, I rushed out with my partner and my camera in hand to the mid-urban oasis of Wandsworth Common to search for photographic and artistic inspiration within the folds of this freshly unfurling Autumn season.

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This post will be one of two in which I share some of the photos taken on that day. Roughly split into themes, my second post will focus more on the images created on the moving surface of Wandsworth Common’s lakes; beautiful abstract compositions reflecting all of the Autumnal colours mirrored in these rippled waters. But today’s post focuses on more solid ground; on the leaves dappled with reds and browns, and on the mushrooms which we scrambled around amongst the undergrowth to find, and which have to be my favourite of all features of the Autumn landscape. They weren’t in fact all that easy to find, and at one point we almost gave up on discovering any. But a little squirrel, scurrying past us with a mushroom in her small furry hands soon alerted us to where the mushrooms were lurking, and the photos which result must surely be dedicated in thanks to that squirrel for showing us the way. Thanks also to that beautiful creature for her own adept posing – my photo of said squirrel nibbling carefully on a mushroom has to be my favourite of the lot.

All photos and written content are strictly the copyright of Nicholas de Lacy-Brown © 2013 and The Daily Norm. All rights are reserved. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of the material, whether written work, photography or artwork, included within The Daily Norm without express and written permission from The Daily Norm’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.