Remembering my youth in Ireland, when the sun shone, which it rarely did, we headed west, the whole of Ireland en masse….. all of us. A sight to behold really, summer fashion was non-existent west of Dublin. In the absence of sun cream, handkerchiefs, neatly tied at corners, decorated heads. Winter attire was modified in moments, rolled up pants, cardigans tied at the waste, socks on the shoulder, shoes at the road, the arriving masses wading ankle deep into the cold Atlantic. Swimmers were a rare sight, and surfers yet to be invented. We never referred to the day as hot, it was considered ‘close’ (pronounced klōs).
"We never stopped, we didn’t have time, ice cream and periwinkles were waiting further on…"
On our journey west we usually passed Ennistymon. We never stopped off, we didn’t have time, ice cream and periwinkles were waiting further on… Had we pulled in on those heady summer days we would have enjoyed the quiet buzz of the old market town, the traditional shop fronts, the sounds of the fiddle and accordion, perhaps tea in the Falls hotel.
Time has passed and I must say I am well acquainted with the place now. The Falls Hotel is a popular venue for local weddings. And if invited it is worth stopping off at Eugene’s, a quaint pub on the main street which is always worth a visit. Eugene’s has a resident dog who has the hang of opening and shutting it’s half door. I have watched him come and go over many a pint.
"...a resident dog who has the hang of opening and shutting it’s half door."
Recently I was invited to exhibit some of my photography work at the gallery there in Ennistymon, a customised old courthouse building, a beautiful space. The resident Curator Trudi van der Elsen organised a show of my work with another west of Ireland photographer, Niall Kerrigan. My fashion, landscape and portrait work tend to reach for the same artistic elements, namely texture and light. I will let the images talk on this occasion, I am still thinking about the ice cream….