There is no need to panic that there has been a grammatical error because although these are my scans they are nothing more intimate.
In case you have just joined me, I have been scanning old trannies and these include the time I was Head Gardener at Myddelton House, Bull’s Cross, Enfield (North London). It was the mid eighties and the gardening world was very different. The range of plants available was dropping fast and it was then that the National Council for the Conservation of Plants and Gardens was formed and I was involved in the London Group (well I was chairman). But back to Bowles, I was there because the garden needed restoration and there will be more of that on Friday but, for now, the work of E A Bowles. It is well known that he was a great gardener, philanthropist and writer. He was also very fond of sketching and painting. For some reason that may be due to his Victorian/Edwardian life, he was fond of painting the birds that dropped dead in the garden. He would have them brought into the house and he painted them in their ‘resting’ position. Maybe I ought to take up the habit with all the wildlife the cat brings in.
He also cut out card silhouettes, surely a Victorian throwback.
He is best known for painting watercolours and his sketches.
But he also painted in a more exuberant style and would compose composite ‘Dutch Master’ style paintings, adding flowers from the garden to the painting when they came into bloom. As would be expected, the flower paintings were carefully observed.
A collection of his work was exhibited at the adjacent Forty Hall.
But I have saved the best till last. He was known for his quirky sense of humour – you can see him making the adjacent boy laugh in the photo below… (left of centre)
And so it seems entirely in character to find him doodling in his notebook.