Already in my blog posts, there is evidence of the influence this wood has over me. It was the insperation of the forest within 'The Travelling Man'. Every line and every image I had put into the story was plucked from the thoughts I've had whilst passing through the wood itself. In one of the images I drew for 'The Travelling Man', I even used an image of one of the trees that exists in the wood to depict the line 'Deeper and further trudged The Travelling Man into the forest of old, the twisted faces of the trees made his blood run cold'. This was the first line I wrote for the story, even though it appears in the middle of the poem. This occured due to passing this tree myself and being taken back by the trees striking and horrific, twisted face. I thought for a while about this tree and it became the source of my inspiration for the story I told.
Within Hagwood is countless dead and twisted trees. Although only a small wood it bares it own cliff side, rivers and bogs that can consume the largest of animals. It's a place that exudes an aura of death, loneliness and menace, yet can be quite enchanting and peaceful too.
A usual occurrence is seeing a sheep one day, wandering in the wood and the next day it will be dead in a ditch. Almost as if the animal resorted to Hagwood as a place to die.
Thinking of this place as a grave yard would be a good resemblance. Not only because of the animals that get consumed by the forest, but due to anything that gets left behind seems to get swallowed by this place. In the summer the plants and grass thrive and raise up. In the winter they die and pull down through the boggy ground whatever laid there previously.
Example of the forest swallowing whatever is placed inside. In this case barbed wire.
As is the case with all old forests, there is a sense that the wood is always staring back at you. I often sculpt this wood or leave sculptures in it too. However, Hagwood has seemed to have crafted it's own sculptures/inhabitants of its own. A while ago I made a study of this entitled 'A Hagwood Study' and I documented Hagwoods inhabitants through the use of photography which can be seen below:
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood Dragon'
As you enter the wood, you are first greeted by 'Hagwood Dragon' after this you are met with many others.
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood Parrot'
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood Demonic Trident'
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood Happy Man'
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood Rutting Stag'
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood (Night)-Mare'
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood Rhinoceros'
'A Hagwood Study: Hagwood Totem-pole'
You may not see what I see depicted in the photographs. My imagination was influenced by this forest to see what I saw. Other walkers may feel differently, experience and see other things, but Hagwood will take hold of you not like many other woods can. This place will remain a site I visit regularly, a constant home for my art and inspiration.