Ship “Ferriera” departing Falmouth,

January 14th, 2018

‘Last Departure’. I am prompted by a Portuguese acquaintance and others on Facebook to write this and reshow the is fine somewhat ‘lost’ painting, it went to a restaurant in Dubai with several others, a favourite of mine, I’ve never heard of it since …

Last Departure

The old Portuguese ship “Ferriera” departing Falmouth, her last departure with a ignominious cargo, scrap iron.

It looked like the last chapter in a story that at one time had been glorious, her time was almost ‘up’; it was not. Read the rest of this entry »

Hardship at Sea

January 12th, 2018
A few thoughts to share with you, written earlier today in reply to some good points raised by Mr. Scott Souder on the Pocket Yachts and trailer sailor page.
You raise some interesting points which all of us who sail very small craft long distances have opinions on !

Sir, “You raise some interesting points which all of us who sail very small craft long distances have opinions on !

Racehorse, a detail

I agree with you in that there were many abuses and scandals at sea with regard to the treatment of men; and there were good men like Samuel Plimsol (you know the origin of ‘The Plimsol Line’ on most of today’s ships?) who campaigned for sailors rights.

However the general drift was towards better conditions. Read the rest of this entry »

Red Sails

January 9th, 2018

You might enjoy my sharing with you an answer to a question from Dave Goree in the USA?

Red sails:


As far as I know the colour goes back to the days of working coast sail.

I was told by an old boy some 50 + years astern, who had spent his life under working sail, much of that without an engine, because coasters furl sail so often the sails benefited from special protection. Read the rest of this entry »

Heavy weather today

January 7th, 2018

A strong gale, cold wind and rain is sweeping Brittany today…

Racehorse 98 % complete, detail 17.11.17

One of the crew shown in this detail from my painting was Olaudah Equiano alias Gustav Weston who sailed on HMS Racehorse rated as both A B and Surgeon’s mate.

See if you can spot him in the better quality detail on my web site page ~ enjoy.

An African man with a very remarkable story who was later influential in the campaign to make Britain the first major power to outlaw the slave trade.

It was my good fortune to be able to include him in this painting completed last year, as one of the men working on the fore-deck in a storm. He went on to write a very influential book on slavery.

On slavery Check out William Wilberforce (1759 – 1833),

Europeans rarely had to go inland to find slaves in Africa.

The Muslim slave trade to Arabia from Africa is undoubtedly the worst biggest crime in human history and by no means completely suppressed today.

Sorely Tried

January 4th, 2018

A somewhat delayed reply to Chris Fagg. You can find his original post, 27 December on my Facebook page, (<hyperlink here) still worth sharing though, enjoy. 

Shearwater off the Firehills

Read the rest of this entry »

Chris Fagg wrote

January 4th, 2018
Sharing replies:
Of my previous post a ‘nautical’ friend of many years, Chris Fagg wrote of the photograph caption, “…hey, if THAT view is N x NW – this world’s in bother ! HaHa”.
Chris Fagg has a good point so I’ll reveal some of my thinking and the reason for my chutzpah.
I replied to Chris Fagg:
Well spotted Chris Fagg, I have used my poetic artist’s licence here!
The elusive rainbows I referred to were seen when facing the opposite way which also meant my hard working camera had to face the wind and rain, a lens wash it did not need.
As this scene looked dramatic with a quite ‘Turner’ sky I chose to post this shot, taken at that period, as I was leaving Castelnau de Montmiral.
I liked the squiggly road, mysterious mist and ‘Turner’ sky so felt it symbolised the beginning of that 8 hrs drive.
By the way, one of my great hero’s, W M J Turner, who’s work and life I have studied many times and still enjoy, who is still a mentor to me, was not adverse to placing the sun in the North in his paintings if that created the effect he wanted to convey.
If I’d had time I’d have painted the view I hesitated to shoot I hesitated to shoot into the inclement weather with my camera.
It would probably have come out something like the pair of painting I’ve reproduced here for you, both painted on location during a summer storm, from the valley of the Vere.

The large hill is by the way, Castenau de Montmiral.   A pair of experiments, the weather was wet but warm , a typical Midi Pyrenees summer storm.

I just had to do something, the alternative being to stay indoors so donned my sea coat.

 “Warm Rain” and “After Warm Rain“, this extraordinary pair of experimental paintings remain in my collection however the time has come when I would be prepared to ‘let them go’.

Measuring 40 x 50 cm (15¾” x 19¾”), both available,  can be purchased by instalments, ask for details. 
Or see page 
For those of you considering going this summer to The Painting School of Montmiral, large hill is by the way, Castenau de Montmiral.

Driving into rainbows

January 3rd, 2018
Steered N by N W this morning, driving into rainbows.
The first half hour from Castelnau de Montmiral was through the beautiful valley of the Vere.
Very wiggly, squiggly roads through the gorge of the Vere, past the dizzyingly rock perched chateau and village of Bruniquel to the the Aveyron Gorges, all are a paradise for nature lovers and inspiration for artists.
After Montauban the autoroute to Bordeaux and on towards Nantes was mostly dry, very well maintained, very windy though.
8 hrs ‘en route’ including splash n go’s and a stop for a lunch based around roast duck and ‘frites’.
Arrived home safely, in need of a vacation, and very pleased with the last 2 weeks which were quite an adventure, opening my eyes to many new possibilities.
It was particularly a great pleasure to be so very warmly received by so many fine, kind and generous friends, to meet so many new people and to have an opportunity of trying to show how much I appreciate, value and love them.

January 1, 2018

January 1st, 2018

At Castelnau de Montmiral
January first, awoken to a beautiful morning at Castelnau de Montmiral by a 09.30 phone call from a potential friend and client; still a fine start to the day, well worth getting up.

This 13 th century gateway, a fine example including a firehole, portcullis slip and evidence of the original gate hinges, facing south towards Gaillac and the sun is part of the original fortifications of Castelnau de Montmiral in the Tarn.  

By mid day, the weather changing, a fine view of what was about to become a wild windy sky, and 100 miles to the west, the mighty Pyrenees chain on their age old march across France and Spain…

New Year at Gaillac

December 31st, 2017
A huge Chinese festival, a first in Europe, bringing people from many parts of France, some 200,000 expected by the end of the festival.
Gaillac and the Tarn today, cafe culture, shopping for the evening.
Warm and sunny here after rain last night, wishing you all a very happy new year, good health and prosperity.

Good by beautiful Tarn

December 29th, 2017

From Castelnau de Montmiral, almost my second home… img_9366

As per the expo at the Espace Culturale, Ville de Gaillac, , so to is my year 2016 closes, more or less a “that was the year that was”.

My year 2016 was a busy year, except for eating, sleeping, sailing  and hot showers of which there was not enough.
Not a bad year for me, not brill either.
I hope you had good luck, and look forward to your news,  wishing you all the very best for 2017 

Castelnau de Montmiral

Castelnau de Montmiral