Monday, December 15, 2008

The Christmas Rush

I expect like most people this is the time of year when there seems to be so much to do and so little time. I've been busy packing and shipping various things for the monthly charity auction that is held on eBid I've also just shipped this print to a buyer in the USA.
Autumn Sunlight(c)

To avoid the crush at the shops I'm waiting for a couple of items in the post, buying online can save a lot of legwork. Whether I shall get much painting done over the festive period may probably be proportional to the amount of food and drink consumed, but I must be a disciplined artist.... yeah right!

May I wish all my readers, customers, past present and future, a Joyful Christmas and Happy New year.

Friday, December 05, 2008

Good News

I had my post operation trip to the hospital today, for the result of the biopsy of the growth that was removed from my hand. It was a "Bowenoid Keratosis", which sounds impressive, but then it could be a plant name, what do I know!! The Good news is that is was not malignant and so have the all clear, the downside is that I am now back on washing up duties.

Tomorrow the Gresley A4 Pacific steam locomotive 'Bittern' will be passing nearby railway line on a steam speacial trip, so I shall be out early tomorrow with my camera to try and get some shots.

Friday, November 21, 2008

A hospital trip and a new painting

Following a visit to my doctor I was referred to the local hospital for the removal of a skin cancer. Unfortunately this was on my brush hand so a partially completed painting had to wait until a couple of days ago before it could be resumed. As with most things there is always a plus side and it has excused me from dishwashing duties for the time being.

This is the painting, of a Great Western Railway pannier tank locomotive running alongside the River Dart in Devon. This is from a photograph I took of the scene about twenty years ago.


I have the stitches removed from my hand next Thursday,and I'm hoping they will finish in time for me to go and photograph a Gresley A4 Pacific locomotive that will be running a steam special that day.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Majestic Power

Following on from my trips to photograph preserved steam locomotives, I've just completed this painting of the "Duchess of Sutherland" one of Sir William Staniers most pwerful locomotive designs. Shown here in her old LMS livery of crimson and looking magnificent.


I have a hospital trip scheduled for later this week for a minor operation on my hand, so I don't expect I shall be painting for a bit, have to see how it goes I guess.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Train chasing again

I have been chasing trains again! When trying to obtain reference information for paintings you have to grab the opportunities when they present themselves. A coupl of weeks back I had a jaunt up to Oxfordshire to photograph the last survivor of the old Southern Railway King Arthur class locomotives 'Sir Lamiel' arriving a little late at one of my chosen locations she was just pulling away so only had the chance for a couple of grabbed shots.

The next was a little closer to home so I had more time, and despite the sun not fully co-operating by staying out these are a couple of the Bulleid Merchant Navy Class "Clan Line" running a Pullman special excursion from London to Southampton E Docks.

She is shown here having just pulled out of Eastleigh, her birthplace 48 years ago.

Here she is arriving in Southampton Docks having just crossed an ungated public road, a rare occurence these days.

I hope to commit this magnificient engine to paint shortly, so what this space, in the meantime you can see a couple of my other railway paintings on my website

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

A short holiday

After a rather dismal summer I managed to find a few days sunshine and took the opportunity to grab a short holiday on the Isle of Wight. Whilst not baking temperatures it was sunny and very pleasant with some stunning scenery near where we were staying. I have plenty of photographs, and perhaps the only slight dissappointment was that there were no old Southern Railway locomotives when we visited the Isle of Wight Steam Railway at Havenstreet. They did have a fine collection of vintage carriages though, so not all was lost and they will prove useful reference for future paintings.

These are a few of the photo's that I took showing some of the magnificent views from St Catherines Down and further west along the coast toward Freshwater.

Since returning home I have sold three paintings at exhibition and now need to settle down to some serious work over the coming months to complete a commission and prepare for next years round of exhibitions.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Photographic expeditions

I've been out on a few photographic expeditions, gaining reference photographs for some of my future paintings. First was a trip to the Bluebell Railway in Sussex which I have not visited for many years. Had a pleasant day there with plenty to photograph and followed this with a quick visit to the nearby Sheffield Park gardens, which kept the wife happy :)

This was one of the shots of a U class Southern Railway locomotive. To see more of my train photographs just click the picture


The next was a BR "Britannia" class locomotive which was on a steam special run passing through Whitchurch, on it's way from London to Bath and Bristol, I thought I was going to miss it, having got slightly lost whilst looking for a good location to shoot from and ended up driving a lot further than anticipated, but made it in time.


And Yesterday the last ocean going Paddle Steamer "Waverley" was captured as she entered Portsmouth harbour, in some rare sunshine amongst all the rain we have been having.


I hope to utilise all these into paintings in due course, in the meantime why not check out my website to see what other delights are available.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Olympic Glory

Having now recovered from getting up early in the morning to watch the sailing from the Beijing Olympics, I've painted this watercolour in celebration of Ben Ainslie winning his third Olympic Gold medal. After his initial battle with Robert Schidt in the Lasers when he won silver, he moved on to the Finn class, vacated by British Gold Medallist Ian Percy, who also won Gold in the Star class this year. He has dominated the class since then and emphasises what an incredible sailor he is. Having previously been a National sailing champion myself, I know the dedication required to compete at this level.

Going for Gold (c)

Friday, August 29, 2008

A busy week

Well it's been a busy couple of weeks, trying to shake off a rather persistent cough made setting up for an exhibition over the Bank Holiday weekend rather hard going. However it was successful with three sales, and followed up this week with a succesful day out to obtain some photographs of a steam locomotive 'Duchess of Sutherland'. It was quite fun chasing it theough the Oxfordshire countryside and trying to obtain a suitable viewpoint, so hopefully the results will feature in a future painting. The rest of the day was spent visiting Buscot Park an old stately home that is the location of four famous Rose series paintings by Edward Burne Jones.

This is one of the train photographs

Thursday, August 07, 2008

A Jack Russell commissioned painting

Had some good news on Tuesday I have sold two of my paintings from the Summer Exhibition, have been busy this week working on a commission, a totally new subject for me so quite a challenge. When I emailed the image to the client, she said it made her cry, so it sounds like I've managed to capture the character of her much loved pet.


Thursday, July 24, 2008

A new venture

It's been a little strange this week, not really sure where all the time has dissappeared, some of it has been spent creating my first video for YouTube which can be seen here Trying to find some music of the correct length took some searching.

Setting up the exhibition this afternoon. If you fancy a personal visit to see my art in the flesh, so to speak, then the venue is Portsmouth Cathedral and it runs daily from Saturday 26th July until Friday 8th August, you might even bump into the artist. There are plenty of other interesting things to see in Portsmouth so could be worth having a day out.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Train Spotting

Following on from the train painting I did a few weeks back I searched the web to find some locations where I could photograph steam on a mainline. I came across a website and learnt of a steam special running from London Waterloo to Weymouth, being pulled by an old Southern Railway Bulleid air smoothed pacific locomotive 'Tangmere' one of the Battle of Britain class, appropriate in this the 90th anniversary of the Royal Air Force. I decided that a good vantage point would be to the west of Southampton Central station, unfortunately the weather hadn't taken any notice of the name of the train, 'Sunny Coast Special' and I ended up getting soaked, and what was worse was that after drying out all my gear including my mobile phone, I didn't get one shot worth keeping. The rain gave all the pictures a very grainy quality like something taken with an old box brownie.

Not to be deterred I found an old photograph taken on the Torbay - Kingswear line in Devon whilst on holiday with my son many years ago and this painting is the result.


Friday, June 27, 2008

A scene from Scotland

With the submission date for the Annual Exhibition of the Portsmouth and Hampshire Art Society fast approaching, I have been considering which paintings to put forward, this is a watercolour painting recollecting the granduer of the West coast of Scotland, from one of my visits some years ago. An artist cannot fail to be inspired by the majestic scenery and rugged beauty of the place, and I feel I shall have to try and make another visit before too long.


If you wish to have a painting of a particular scene that is special for you, please feel free to contact me through my website for a no obligation discussion, or just visit my gallery for a browse.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Last weeks trip

My son had some holiday last week so we took the opportunity to visit the Watercress Line preserved railway, that runs between Alresford and Alton in Hampshire. The weather was good and took the opportunity to get some photographs, this painting is based on one I took as the train arrived at Medstead and Four Marks, the highest point on the line before beginning the long descent into Alton.


We are off to visit the Great Western Railway Centre at Didcot tomorrow, celebration of Fathers Day, well that's the excuse anyway.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Another Acrylic Landscape Painting

I've just completed this acrylic on canvas, though not sure that it should be considered a landscape or a wildlife painting since the deer caught in the shafts of sunlight filtering through the trees is the focal point.

Have shipped a couple of prints to the USA this week, I've noticed that deliveries there seem to be taking a little longer these days, perhasp the planes are flying slower to save fuel given the rising costs that we are all suffering from at the moment.

I have also just completed an order for notecards of a selection of my paintings which are sold to support the League of Friends at my local hospital. I'm have a trip planned to the Great Western Society at Didcot for next week, to gather some information for a forthcoming painting, so watch this space.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

This weeks activities

I have ventured into unknown territory this week and painted my first ever abstract, the wife says she likes it, but then maybe I should expect that. It is an acrylic on canvas and will probably be entered into the summer exhibition unless anyone offers me obscene amounts of money before then.


I have just shipped another Limited Edition print sold from my Ebid store. There are more and more sellers signing up there each day following their disillusionment with eBay's latest changes.

I've also given my car its spring clean and it's now looking nice and shiny, and today I am breaking with tradition and actually watching a soccer match. Portsmouth are in the FA Cup Final, the first time since they won it way back in 1939 before I was born. Since they are the local team I have to support them.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Late Summer Sun sold at exhibition !

This is a landscape painting was sold at the recent exhibition, and have subsequently sold another Limited Edition print of it as well. You can buy this print along with more of my work from my online store at Tazbar


Well now that the April showers are hopefully out of the way, the weather may be good enough to venture outside on some painting expeditions. I visited the Guild of Railway Artists exhibition last week, and that has rekindled my love of steam trains, so a visit with my son to the Great Western Railway Centre at Didcot is scheduled for next month, you should expect to see a railway painting before long.

Friday, April 18, 2008

One for the exhibition

This is one of my larger paintings being shown at the exhibition this weekend

Duel to Windward (c)

Not much painting done this week, well apart from varnishing the garden seat. I was also delegated to attack a shrub, which has now gone to the local tip. It seems to me it would be a lot easier to just plant things at the tip, it would save all the cutting down and shifting it. We have had some visitors to the garden, this young starling who has fledged already, seems early to me, must be global warming.


Friday, April 04, 2008

More sales, more painting

I have had some more sales on the eBid auction site this week. It is worth investigating if you are looking for a good alternative to eBay.

I have been working on some more of my miniature paintings ready for the exhibition at the end of the month. I have also had an enquiry from an art group wanting me to do a demonstration for them, which is something I enjoy, sharing my tips and experiences with other artists.


Friday, March 28, 2008

Busy Week

It has been a busy week, preparing and attending a Craft Show locally. Another of my Limited Edition prints now finding a new wall to hang on. You can see more of these low cost prints at

I have also been painting some more miniatures, this being one of the countryside series

Friday, March 21, 2008

A new seascape miniature

This is one of a series of four miniature seascapes I'm painting ready to show in an art exhibition later next month. I usually sell most of them, however I have some miniatures available to purchase in my gallery at Tazbar


Sunday, March 16, 2008

Exhibition success

Have started painting some miniature seascapes this week for a forthcoming exhibition. This is one of my watercolour paintings which was sold at exhibition this weekend, part of an event to raise funds for a charity to help deaf children.

 Victory Entering Portsmouth (c)

It was nice to see Lewis Hamilton win the first Grand Prix, I sold the original acrylic painting of him winning his first race in Canada last year.

Lewis Hamilton Wins (c)

Prints of both these paintings are available, visit my website

Friday, March 07, 2008

A Warm Sunny Beach

Sitting here in England on a winters day, you might dream about somewhere warm, with azure seas lapping a sunlit beach. I have just completed this watercolour painting for a client in Ireland, though I have to say it's a shame that the budget didn't include the opportunity to do some on-site location sketches in Barbados.


Friday, February 29, 2008

All change at eBay

Well there seems to be a lot of upset artists as well as other people on eBay these days. The monopoly is massively increasing its Fees that it charges sellers, softened by a very small decrease, 10 cents! in the cost of listing, and discounts, if you can qualify! Overall it a huge increase in costs. Not only is this a blow to the small sellers, eBay will decide whether the seller's item gets seen on the site according to the star feedback rating system.

It works like this, if you score below 4.6 then tough your listings will be at the bottom of the pile and not seen by the buyers, also if your rating is low you can't qualify for listing discounts. Now eBay says that a score of 4 is 'Good' thus guiding the buyers to select that out of possible 5 where 1 the lowest. So at a stroke they are skewing the system so it is unlikely they will have to give the sellers any discounts, and with their search system skewed pushing the low scorers out of sight. As an added bonus sellers can no longer leave a negative for the buyer that messes up or rips them off ( yes it does happen to some folk unfortunately ) I'm pleased to say that all my buyers when I was selling on ebay were excellent, and I had no problems.

No wonder so many people are unhappy, a lot of sellers and buyers are now deserting the place and going to alternatives sites like Tazbar and eBid so there will be less choice for buyers on eBay and they should now start looking for their bargains elsewhere.

I have been selling my art on both Tazbar and eBid for some time, and getting some great bargains as well, including a SatNav system on Tazbar that has been invaluable when I have been delivering paintings.

So check out these new auction sites, and see what bargains you can find, in the meantime, I must press on with a commission, and sort out some paintings for the next exhibition.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

A new beginning

With the proposed changes at eBay, artists along with many sellers who are unhappy with the situation at the monopoly, are moving away to sell, and also buy at new alternative venues. Sadly eBay seems resolutely set on its move to a department store approach, where big retailers who have been recruited by eBay have destroyed the community feel, that was once the big attraction to both buyers and sellers.

I already shifted away from eBay to new locations 18 months ago, a move that I don't regret. Many others are now waking up to the fact that they are working for eBay rather than eBay helping them to work, with the never ending escalation of fees and their failure to deal with scammers. So you may want to check out Tazbar or eBid and get back some of the pleasure that you used to have buying online.

There is a seller boycott of Ebay from 18th -25th February, so if you were thinking of buying or selling there, why not support the sellers, and try out some of the alternatives. You can see a list of other auction sites Here

There is an exciting new art only venue due to be launched so check back later for more details.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Independent Artists Group Exhibition

I have been busy over the last week or so changing broadband suppliers, and getting ready for an exhibition which is currently being held in Rugby Museum and Art Gallery in the centre of town.

The Exhibition is by a group of us, who form the Independent Artist Group who come together, to exhibit our work throughout the country, in addition to our normal online selling activities. This presents people with the opportunity to see our art work in the flesh so to speak.

There are exhibits from 15 artists covering a wide range of styles, so if you are near the area why not pop along for a browse. Full deatils of viewing times can be found here

This is one of four watercolours that I am showing. Victory Entering Portsmouth (c)

To visit my website just click here, if you are interested in puchasing a Limited Edition print or a painting, they are also available from the Tazbar online auction site.

Many new sellers are arriving at Tazbar and eBid another auction site, as well now, following eBays recent moves which has alienated thousands of good sellers, who are unhappy with the changes eBay is making. I can recommend a visit to either of these venues where you can pick up some real bargains.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Gloomy weather

The weather has pretty wet and as a consequence natural light has not been good for painting, so I have been fiddling about with other things. I have just acquired a wireless remote release for my camera and I am hoping that this will enable me to take some closeup shots of some wildlife. They shouldn't be spooked if I'm not close by, but hopefully they will ignore the camera. These are some shots I took in the garden to test the setup. They are Goldfinches who seem pretty keen to eat all the Niger seeds that I can supply greedy little blighters.



Saturday, January 05, 2008

Another Year starts

It's been an odd sort of week, that seems to have flown by, but I don't know where it went, lost in the post Christmas New Year haze I suppose! I had a very nice book of Railway Art, I haven't painted a railway scene for quite a while so this has inspired me.

I've been selling some of my miniatures, three of them bought by one person. A couple of them here.

I treated myself to an electric pencil sharpener this week as well so I might get round to doing some more sketching. This is a little coloured pencil piece that I did yesterday.

I'm pleased to say that I got my car back from the repairers today, following the reprofiling of the rear wheel arch done by 'white van man' whose comment was classic - " I saw you but thought you'd gone".