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A new photography book ‘The Garden of England from the Air’, by Jason Hawkes, manages to find room for a crop formation…

This publication is the sort of large glossy hardback book you buy, look through and admire once, then stack on the groaning shelf full of other coffee-table books to be pulled out again only by bored visitors.

It’s a nice production, of course, crammed full of colour aerial photos showing English rural landscapes from the air. Rather charmingly, it gives a whole page over to the crop formation which appeared in oats at Stephen Castle Down, Hampshire on 2nd July 2000 (Steve Alexander shot pictured right). Ironically, the photo itself is one of the less inspired in the book, but maybe the author felt the pattern said it all.

In a happy break with tradition, the accompanying text manages to be remarkably open-minded about the causes of the phenomenon, though it sides largely with natural phenomena as the most likely explanation.

A purchase only for completists, then, but nice to see it there all the same.

‘The Garden of England from the Air’, by Jason Hawkes, Ebury Press 2001, ISBN 0-09-187907-8.



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