29 Oct 2012


So many leaves – barrow loads! These lovely clear & crispy days may have induced a rapid leaf fall, but they are invigorating and draw me outside for some fresh air. Tis the season of porridge for breakfast, hearty soup by the bonfire for lunch, and a sausage hotpot supper. So much to do at the moment and already fully booked for pre-Christmas commissions and getting ready for the Great Liverpool Art Fair in the Royal Liver Building on 24 November.


21 Oct 2012


A large bowl of brandy soaked soft fruit is filling the kitchen with festive aromas  – the Christmas cakes will be going in the oven today. Yesterday I dismantled the frosted runner bean wigwams and scooped up piles of mushy nasturtiums. Winter must be just round the corner, the sun took ages to get warm enough to burn off this morning’s mist and I had to wait for some good light to photograph two different dogs for a commissioned portrait. One of them was Dylan, who probably had a wash & blow-dry for the occasion, whilst the other was a lurcher and a bit more low maintenance! Both dogs were very unimpressed with the whole affair and it took a bouncy red ball and the scent of a rabbit, respectively, to get them to look remotely photogenic. 588 photos later, I start the task of selecting the best ones (Handy Henry has an eye for a good one!). On the whole not a very creative week, but I did sell my first ACEO (Artists Cards Editions & Originals – collectible miniature artworks) which has inspired me to produce some more.  My laptop and printer however, have been very creative - reinventing their purpose in life, and upsetting Flo in the process - but that's another story !

14 Oct 2012

Handy Henry

Another busy week – Pru’s new regime has Flo working non-stop. Dolly has addressed the cake shortfall and it’s been so wet and cold that Gerty has retreated indoors. Meet Henry – who regularly makes an appearance in my diary sketches, but has not been formally introduced. Henry is the beloved husband of Flo, he supervises Gerty and is a devoted fan of Dolly’s cakes (but easily drops off to sleep when satiated by her latest kitchen creation). However, Henry is allergic to Pru and her lists of things to do, especially if they involve him! He is very handy, often found engulfed in a cloud of dust or pile of autumn leaves. He likes to hide where Pru can’t find him, and delights in jumping out to frighten Flo as she walks by his hiding spot. Henry will lovingly prop up Flo when Pru has overdone it and is a trusted critic of Flo’s artistic ventures.  Despite being surround by women, he is a bit lonely these days without his companion Ned.


7 Oct 2012

Spice Girl

They say variety is the spice of life - certainly plenty of variety for me lately! There was my first book cover last week, this week I’ve been on the computer doing my first graphics commission; I’ve had a lesson on the anatomy of horse tack and mane plaiting in preparation for a horse portrait; discovered that using charcoal on watercolour paper is to be avoided; picked up a UFO (unfinished object – namely a complex Fair-Isle jumper pattern approaching it’s third winter in the knitting bag), and been on a short portrait course. Pru is proud, Flo is tired. Gerty has neglected her greenhouse plants and Dolly is in the dog house due to a lack of cake.