Hampton Court Palace

I went to Hampton Court Palace a few weeks ago with my family for a day out. The Palace was once the home of King Henry VIII and was built in the Tudor style in 1514. The building and grounds are huge, with mazes, gardens and so much more.

Walking up to the Palace and through the entrance was a large courtyard. There were huge tall pillars along a walkway leading to other rooms, high walls with a decorative clock and a fountain with statues to depict what life may have been like.

Inside were some beautiful rooms and staircases. The King’s Staircase was especially wonderful, with a huge painting across the entire wall and ceiling, and an intricately made handrail leading up the stairs.

The rooms were set up as they would have been when it was lived in, with costumes and props on display and with facts of King Henry’s life there. The inside ground walkways opened up to courtyards that had fountains and statues.

On the other side of the building was the was the Queen’s Staircase, also quite beautiful, and was lit in a soft, warm light.

After looking around the main part of the Palace we headed towards the gardens. The Great Fountain Garden is one of the largest and was one that we came upon first. Just as we entered a horse and carriage pulled up, and we all piled on excitedly for a ride around the garden.

After our ride we walked towards the other gardens, the main one was The Privy Garden which was set out in an Italian style and was very well looked after. Along one side was a long, vine coloured walkway which was lovely for a stroll. Nearby were other well kept, but smaller gardens. I personally loved walking through the rose garden which gave off an amazing scent.

The Palace also had a maze, which is England’s oldest surviving at 300 years old. We had fun looking for the centre and then our way out. Next we visited the huge play area for children, with high bridges, hills and sculptures. Hidden away, the Palace also had The Great Vine, the largest and oldest known grapevine in the world, at over 240 years old.

There was a lot to see, with some beautiful, grand rooms, staircases and gardens, and we easily spent a whole day there, after which we were all completely exhausted. I can see now, why Hampton Court Palace is so popular and it was amazing to see and learn about the history of how Kings and Queens of our past lived in such an opulent palace.

WPC: Curve

Arabic writing

I love the curves of Arabic writing, the fluid, smooth strokes that form the words ‘Allah Hu’ or ‘God is’, words that look so complex but feel so simple and bring peace to heart and mind.

Capturing artwork

I recently went to the National Gallery in London and since my last visit you are now allowed to take photographs. I would normally never take photographs of paintings as I always would want to visit and appreciate the work in person, but on this occasion I decided to take a few snaps as a nice reminder. The photos I took were of some of my favourite paintings by great artists that I’m lucky to have on my doorstep in London, namely The Waterlily Pond by Monet and Sunflowers by Van Gogh.

I always like to take a moment and think about how long it must have taken to create such a painting and what kind of person the artist must have been to paint in this way during their life, artworks that really stand the test of time. I love being able to see the textures of the layered paint and the colours, which close up looks quite messy but stand back and you see how great it all comes together and looks quite beautiful.

I hope to visit again at some point and enjoy all the great paintings that are luckily so easy for me to access.