What a fantastic day today was! It truly was the first real day of Spring. I was moving studios - from my conservatory to my custom-built one at the top of the garden - and whilst traipsing up and down the winding path lugging all my gear, there were lots of butterflies flitting about, sipping nectar from the few flowers in bloom and taking their first flights after their long hibernation in garden sheds and woodpiles. I saw four different species (these are all my photos, apart from the Brimstone and the bees, taken last year):
and here's the underside, showing the distinctive white punctuation,
and male Brimstones, the males a particularly bright lemon yellow.
Queen Buff and Red-Tailed Bumble Bees too were stumbling and buzzing about, looking for suitable nesting sites. And of course, the real harbinger of Spring, the Ice Cream Van was in full voice in the village! Here's my tribute to him in a painting I did last year: