Before March completely dissolves into April, I want to share a few pages from journals that were kept by Edith Holden, who wrote both The Nature Notes of an Edwardian Lady and The Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady. I have had both of these books in my library for years. I especially like the way that Holden illustrates her pages with watercolor. In several ways, Edith Holden reminds me of Beatrix Potter, and Beatrix Potter is no doubt one of my all-time heroes.
Edith Holden was born in 1871 and she died in 1920.
Beatrix Potter was born in 1866 and she died in 1943.
Beatrix Potter Created Peter Rabbit and All His Friends
Both Beatrix Potter and Edith Holden grew up in the United Kingdom.
Edith’s childhood home was in King’s Norton, Birmingham
Beatrix Potter’s childhood home was in Bolton Kensington Gardens
J.M. Barrie, who created Peter Pan, also grew up in Kensington Gardens.
J.M. Barrie, Beatrix Potter, and Edith Holden spent large chunks of their childhoods romping around outside and in recording nature in watercolor. I am happy to say that I also have the journals of Beatrix Potter and J.M. Barrie.
But for just a moment, I want to share a few of Holden’s journal entries about March:
Compare Holden’s journal entry above to Sylvia Long’s illustrations for the picture book An Egg is Quiet:
Holden wrote very few original things in her journal. Her journal was more of an illustrated journal. But imagine the time that it took her to record her images, and imagine how very much more aware that she must have been of daffodils, sweet violets, bunnies, and pussy willows after having observed them so very, very closely.
In a previous post, I mentioned that I intend to do more close observations of nature. I have absolute confidence that having made these observations will bring new energy to my art, my illustrating, and my writing.