A good question

October 22nd, 2018

My painting shown here is available including as a signed numbered print on canvas, {price from £147 inc p&p] “Trafalgar Dawn, the French Perspective” shows the informal arrangement of the British fleet as described in French and Spanish documents as seen from the French flagship ‘ Bucentaure’. 

This awesome marine painting measures 30 x 121 cm (12″ x 48″)

Shown in answer to a good question from Jim Stein regarding my painting ‘First Shots’ which I created back around 1995. 

First Shots, Trafalgar

Jim wrote ~ “Just a question about the lower courses, would they have been furled up to stop any chance of fire, I could be wrong in this”.

Jim Stein, British ships normally furled their courses when preparing for battle, exactly as you suggest.

However …  Read the rest of this entry »


October 21st, 2018

In the wake of the ‘Titanic’.
All we have left of the beautiful and very deliberately symbolic painting by the famous Norman Wilkinson of ‘Plymouth Harbour’ is a poor quality photocopy.
In trying to understand the painting I have produced the drawing shown here and give you an image of the photocopy.

Fortunately I have some understanding of NW’s work, style and techniques used and methods.
Equally fortunately I know Plymouth Harbour intimately having frequently sailed those waters and painted there. 
Which leaves the problem of identifying the ships or at least their class.

Read the rest of this entry »

As I write

October 21st, 2018

As I write, this, “First Shots”, was pretty much what was happening off Cape Trafalgar, 21 October 1805. 

First shots, Trafalgar

The battle was the climax of a period during which Britain was under very serious threat from Europe, of being over run.
“First Shots, Trafalgar”, one of my “Nelson and Trafalgar Collection”, painted while I was ‘Official Artist” to HMS Victory during the run up to Trafalgar 200.
A decent sized painting, measuring 76 x 121 cm (30″ x 48″), one of a series yet to be publicly exhibited. 
Armed with a letter of introduction from the then Captain of HMS Victory, to obtain a balanced perspective, my research took me to many places not normally open to the public, in Britain, France and Spain.
You can follow this amazing adventure starting on page http://www.frickers.co.uk/…/the-trafalgar-collection/

Sailing into legend, 04.10.1805

October 16th, 2018

NEW > ‘Sailing into legend’

Pickle, HMS Pickle, one of The Nelson and Trafalgar Collection

This fine marine painting measures 62 x 47.5 cm [24 1/2 x 18 3/4] oils on canvas board, available.

Hyperlink > Sailing into Legend (HMS Pickle) 04.11.1805

Early in the morning of November the 4 th 1805, the His Majesty’s Schooner Pickle sailed into a Cornish legend.  Read the rest of this entry »

which flag?

October 15th, 2018
A fine detail in ‘Nelson and Minerve’, a question from Graham Street via Facebook,

Hi Gordon Frickers, great work mate. I have a question about the picture with a red ensign, and who was the admiral of the red . Thank you“. 

Nelson and ‘Minerve’, flag detail

I’ll endeavour to answer your good question above as a new post as this may have wider interest.
Actually there are many fine details in this painting “Nelson and Minerve” which most people won’t easily spot,
An example is the merchant ships are all of types seen off that coast at that period [a Zebec being one], types frequently mentioned for example by C S Forester in his now classic Horatio Hornblower series.
A T Mahon in his authoritative “The Life of Nelson [p 221] tells us at that time Nelson was taking his orders from Admiral John Jervis. 
The flag appears else where in the painting, how many can you spot?

Read the rest of this entry »

Two for the price of one

October 14th, 2018

Ready to go, varnished last week, now available for exhibition or a new home, one of my “Nelson and Trafalgar” paintings, a series, some now sold, as yet not publicly exhibited. 


Hyperlink > Nelson and the ‘Minerve‘ > available

The 21 st of October is ‘Trafalgar Day’.

‘Immortal’ Nelson’s ‘HMS Minerve’ voyage was a major ‘sea mark’ in his rise to fame. 


Nelson and the Minerve, detail

This continues my original brief while ‘Official Artist’ to HMS Victory, to research and illustrate “the lesser known but interesting aspects of Nelson and HMS Victory”. 

Read the rest of this entry »


October 12th, 2018

Now for something completely different ~ All that survives of the original is a poor photocopy. This is quite some ‘Titanic’ story, with a Plymouth twist.

Some detective work is needed. 

Titanic, ‘Plymouth Harbour’, 12.10.18

While the detection progresses, so does the painting with the first tones being applied in the classical manner. Read the rest of this entry »


October 7th, 2018

“Krakatoa ~ clippers”.
76 x 101 cm (30″ x 40″), oils, price of this original, £1,900.00. 

Krakatoa, clippers

Here, I give you a fine painting and a great story.

Our location is the Sunda Straights between Java and Sumatra.
In the middle of this shallow, difficult and today relatively little used water way are the remains of the volcano Krakatoa. 
In days long astern, the magnificent tea clippers would race through the Sunda Staights. 
Read the rest of this entry »

Mauretania Week

September 29th, 2018

‘The’ Mauretania, Blue Ribband holder [fastest liner on the Atlantic] for 27 years, possibly Cunard’s most successfully ship, ‘Mauretania‘. 

Liverpool history

Mauritania, Liverpool

I am delighted to have been accepted onto the Facebook page ‘The Ocean Liner Enthusiasts’, a closed group.
Noticing the page has a ‘Mauretania Week’ I thought it might be appropriate and of interest to post the following.

Thousands turned out on a wet night to watch ‘Mauretania‘ make her maiden departure. 

People described her as “a blaze of electric lights”.

In those days electric lighting was a ‘coming thing’, as was Mauretania, a very advanced ship for her time.

Among other advances, she had the largest Parson’s steam turbines built to that date for her and her sister ‘Lusitania‘.

That was a gamble which worked out well resulting in the two fastest liners afloat.

My interest in liners was first aroused when as a child on a school outing we visited Southampton to see the great liners which that day included the ‘Queen Mary‘.

Painted long ago, carefully researched including the small craft and general ambience of the occasion, a private commission, the picture shows ‘Mauretania‘ making her maiden departure from Liverpool.

Mauretania was a real pleasure to research and paint. I still treasure my copy of ‘Engineering, Mauretania’ bought at that time. My efforts were encouraged by the late Harry Milsom, then editor of ‘Sea Breezes’, whom I met when visiting Liverpool.

Pictures of her early life are rare.

I still have a very few signed numbered prints in my chart desk, will they find appreciative homes?

Harvest Moon

September 28th, 2018

Updated, “Harvest Moon”, both the web site page renamed “Harvest Moon” and the painting have been updated in part responding to feed back from those lucky few who have seen this original painting ‘in the flesh’. 

Harvest Moon 27.09.2018

Many of the greatest painters of all time, J M W Turner for example, are known to have returned to a painting sometimes years later.  Read the rest of this entry »