News and Notebooks

New A6 notebooks now for sale in the Prehistories etsy shop. They are inspired by Ancient Egyptian wall paintings and Neolithic art (the Folkton Drums).

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I’m also very pleased to say that two of my comics are now on sale in the Small Press section of Gosh! comics shop in London.

Cover with signature

Rock Face

Dr H

 

 

The Hollow Land

The Hollow Land

I’ve just finished reading The Hollow Land by Jane Gardam. I stumbled upon this book in a clear-out sale at my local library, having been attracted by Janet Rawlins’ sparse cover illustration.

First published as a children’s book in 1981, the book is a series of linked short stories about two families in Cumbria; one a farming family, the other regular holiday-makers from London. Reminiscent of Alan Garner’s The Stone Book,  Gardam’s stories are concerned with time and place, with the connections between generations and the land.

If you’ve read any of Gardam’s work you’ll know that she is a flawless writer of prose, and a great observer of people. The gentle pace of these stories draws you into the lives of the families, with a focus on the two youngest boys – Bell and Harry – and their engagement with The Hollow Land (a title drawn from the writings of William Morris).

Gardam writes eloquently about continuity and change, about belonging and being in place, about the past and possible futures. From the stone circle high in the hills, to the bronze age burial by the bridge, to the ghostly mother searching for her son, through childhood adventures and near-disasters, to a post-peak oil existence, Gardam guides us through the hills and the ages with a perfect footing.

Dr H

Making Comics with Southampton YAC

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Last weekend I went to make comics with members of the Southampton YAC (Young Archaeologists’ Club).

After some warm up drawings…

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 … we got down to the business of making comics.

The comic-making session followed a talk on excavations at the medieval sites of  Melorne and Temple in Cornwall, so  knights and castles featured heavily in the comics.

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There was some prehistory too, including a telling of the folklore linked to the Merry Maidens stone circle.

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Group members produced some excellent artwork.

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Displayed excellent story-telling skills.

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And excellent colouring skills too.

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It was great watching all these stories come to life!

Many thanks to Alex Walker for the invitation.

Dr H