The Cottage Smallholder

stumbling self sufficiency in a small space

Lynn Keddie came to stay!


Photo: Nasturtiums

Photo: Nasturtiums

Back in September I received this email.
“Hi Fiona I am a freelance garden photographer with features in mostly National Press. I happened across your site and would be very interested in coming down and photographing you, Danny, your animals, vegetables, flowers and other produce…”
I was thrilled, Lynn Keddie was interested in photographing our garden. She had found us whilst searching for a pickled nasturtium seed recipe  – thank you Duncan!

I took some photos of the kitchen garden to give Lynn a better idea of what she would find. The weeks prior to her visit where a whirl of activity. Cutting hedges, edging borders and dealing with the leaves. I spent an hour a day polishing the garden and then would totter back to bed.

Besides being a great photographer, Lynn is feisty, fun and easy to work with. She worked really hard taking hundreds of shots whilst I flew back and forth as her ADC.
“Can you fetch an old bit of linen?”
“Would you like a tablecloth, napkins or hand towel.”
“A napkin will be fine.”
“How did you know that I’d have old linen?”
“I just knew somehow.”
Adrenalin kept me going. I hadn’t been up for a whole day and evening for months.

I’d precooked supper. It was the first time that Lynn had eaten rabbit and she loved the dish. Lynn and I had gathered the vegetables for supper from the garden and Danny prepared these. We had a great evening chatting and laughing til late.

Lynn was up early to take advantage of the morning light in the garden. When she left at lunchtime I retired to bed. Exhilarated and exhausted I slept for six hours.

“Professional digital cameras don’t automatically process the pictures like ordinary cameras do.” Lynn explained. “Each shot has to be processed by hand. So you will have to wait a few weeks to see the contact sheets.”

When they arrived we were delighted with them. Lynn’s photographs are doing the rounds of picture editors. She’s explained that this can take months. She’s coming back for a second shoot in the summer and we are very keen to work on a book together, if we can find a publisher.

Lynn has just put some of her Cottage Smallholder photographs on her website. They are in a section called “grow your own”, if you’d like to have a peek.

  Leave a reply


  1. petoskystone

    whoo-hoo! here’s hoping for more of the same…

  2. Tamar@StarvingofftheLand

    I love being able to visualize where it all happens! What evocative photos. My favorite is the one with the Brussels sprouts and the dirty fingernails.

  3. Hello Fiona, just had a look at the photos. I love the one of the cockerel. The colours are amazing!

  4. I am beyond envious of your garden, it’s beautiful. Lynne’s photos have a lovely light about them.

  5. The pictures are lovely Fiona – you look so friendly – can I pop round for a cuppa?! I love your gardeners finger nails! You have a super looking

  6. Magic Cochin

    Perfect for September Country Living? I’ll try sending vibes through the ether to the art eds 😉

    Best wishes

  7. The pictures are super Fiona. It is like having a wee tour around your garden together with some of the end results

  8. Fiona those pictures are great, so much colour for the time of year too. Not like here, it is white, brown, grey and errr white and white. Still looks lovely under its fresh white blanket though so can’t complain but seeing those photos reminds me of the colours locked up there underneath waiting for Spring to arrive.

  9. The pics are beautiful, but that’s a horrible site to navigate.

  10. Toffeeapple

    OOO, I’m so excited for you! I can’t wait to see the results. Bouncing around now…

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