Saturday, 27 August 2011

Searching For Queenies in a Smugglers Haven

Day 4 of the 30 Day Drawing Challenge has brought me to my most challenging subject - draw your favourite place. Man, it was hard to decide where my favourite place is!
There are many places that have a spot reserved in my heart; our lovely little flat, my family home in Cornwall, places that I've fallen in love with whilst travelling...the list is rather large.
Eventually I settled upon a gorgeous little beach in Cornwall called Prussia Cove.

Prussia Cove is somewhat special for my family as we have a generations old connection with it and the surrounding area. The cove itself is very small, and can only be accessed by climbing down a narrow path that has been worn into the rock. The small pebbly beach is only uncovered when the tide is out.
The cove was used long ago as a smugglers base and you can still see the rail tracks worn into the rock today, where they used to load up stolen cargo and take it deep into the caves.
More recently my Grandmother (whom I regrettably never knew), grew up in the house that stands on the cliff overlooking the cove. It is a dramatic and untamed area. There are no large tourist car parks up on the cliff nor are there any food stalls or ice cream vans spoiling the view. To be at Prussia Cove is to be lost in time.

Here's my interpretation with watercolour pencils and black pen:

We have a very old empty 'Dimple' whiskey bottle at my Mothers house which is half filled with tiny shells. We call them 'Queenies' but their proper name is Trivia shells. Every time my Grandmother visited Prussia Cove she would hunt around in the pebbles until she found one, then she'd put it in the bottle. My Mother has always done the same thing and so the tradition has been passed down to me. They're very tiny and extremely hard to find. Sometimes we'll come away with only finding one and other days we'll be lucky and come away with perhaps three or four. I recently got The Boy in on this and he quite enjoyed himself! Once you start it's incredibly difficult to stop until you've found one. It becomes a mission! This is what they look like - the scale is in cm's.

Prussia Cove was used as the setting for the film 'Ladies in Lavender' starring Dame Judi Dench and Maggie Smith. The cottage they live in in the film is the same one in which my Grandmother grew up in. The film is set in the 1930's and very little had to be changed for the scenes in the house and on the beach. I'd definitely recommend it - it's a wonderfully made film.

Until next time lovely bloggers...or as they say in Cornish - Dha weles!

1 comment:

  1. How absolutely DELIGHTFUL! I'm a bit obsessed with Doc Martin as I love Portwenn so much - all those rugged coastlines, rolling green hills, insnaely cobbled roads and little teeny doorways - it's so beautiful.

    You actually get to live it in real life - I'm quite envious! How amazing that that was your grandmother's house. Your drawing is lovely.

    Sarah xxx