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Summers long gone

Summer was weird this year.Not just because of those Daleks that turned up in the close one morning looking for directions, but because it was not really a summer. One great week at the beginning of June. That was really the end of the summer. Now we find ourselves dark before 5:20pm. Now we are bolstering ourselves down for an unknown winter. If you read the Daily Express we are in for an apolyptic winter, with temperatures dropping so low your toes will fall off. I think they said that last year and maybe the year before that too. In the meantime I’ve prepared for the worst winter of despair by drawing. Last year I met a few good people and one beacon was Mark Leggat, author of The London Cage. He’s an intelligent and funny man and has a dog called McWuff. For some reason I decided to try and sketch him (McWuff not Mark) ☺️ Here is my attempt ☺️




While I continue to beaver away on the 2nd part of ‘The 100 Runes of Mystor’and the launch of ‘The Scotsmanauts’ I’m looking back at some of the photographs and drawings I’ve done in recent times. The old adage ‘Jack of All Trades…Master of None’ probably sums me up. I flit from one hobby to another instead of concentrating of one and becoming brilliant at it. Photography and Art are just two of many hobbies I plitter about with.

One night during late Summer I was called to the window to see a young hare in our garden. With the sunset glowing in the background, our young visitor looked beautiful. I quickly grabbed my camera before it disappeared………….

……….a few nights later i decided to attempt a quick sketch of our little friend…………..

it only took 20 minutes but it’s prompted me to work on a proper colour version before Xmas ☺️ 


I wish I wasn’t lazy. I heard about the photographer who won the Countryfile Calendar photo competition. They stood in waders in a river for eleven hours before they captured a kingfisher. Now THAT’S endeavour. ☺️ Me? I have the attention span of a gnat so it’s weird I even take a decent photo now and again…..

 Maisie the Cat

The story of how Maisie the Cat ended up with us is worth a minor discussion. We’d put off having another cat after Spike, our first ever cat passed away. Eventually we decided to visit the Cat Protection League and have a look at Maisie. She’d been in and out of homes and allegedly been in a feral situation with several other cats at some point. When we went to have a look at her, she was so shy. There was a cat in the next cage who was all over us but, for some reason we chose Maisie. It’s taken weeks and weeks but she’s calmed down. She has been bringing her food up now and again but we’ve put that down to eating too quickly. She also finds the outside world a scary place and won’t venture more than 20 feet beyond the kitchen door. We’ll get there eventually…… here she is lying in front of the woodburner tonight ☺️ 

Pictures – YouTube and the glass apple 

Drawing and me are a bit like Donald Trump is to politics, not very compatible. Give me a blank sheet of paper and I’d struggle. However, give me something to copy or a photo to generate an idea and…..I’m sort of in there. As I mentioned in another post, for someone who doesn’t really draw, I have more art materials than Donald Trump has gaffes (I was going to say ‘sorry’ if you’re a Donald Trump supporter reading this but that would also be ridiculous ☺️). Based on art materials alone, I should be in the Premier League of artists. But, when you see what other people can do, I’m in the Sunday League of the Art world,  and that probably being disrespectful to the Sunday League. 🤔

With a bit of practice and tuition you can improve though. YouTube is an amazing source of art tuition. I’m subscribed to several proper artists Channels. They are full of tricks and trips on drawing just about anything. Before I started following them I was drawing very basic things. Let me go off through my iPad photos and see if I can find an example……. stay with me………

………..ok thanks for waiting ☺️ this is an early ‘d’ actually drawn using Paper by 53, an app on the iPad. So, I didn’t even leave my seat to ‘draw’ this. You can imagine en emperors clothes type of art critic saying ‘Oh Dahling…..I like its simplicity and the colours, they just jump out at you…..’ When, actually, a 5 year old could probably have done better. ☺️

But, there’s a guy called Marcello Barenghi, who has his own YouTube channel…… he is one of many amazing artists. He taught me to do this……..

Just by watching a 5 minute sped up video by Marcello, I could draw a glass green apple using pastel pencils. I was quite pleased, but, of course, to put my smile back in the pot, Marcello can do this…….

Maybe next week I’ll try that one…….☺️

Pictures – frogs or toads

Not too sure whether this is a frog or a toad so I apologise to the amphibian world for my lack of ignorance ☺️

I love Robins

I don’t know why it is but I love Robins. Over the years several have visited our garden, albeit I’d like to think they are all one and the same. Here’s my little Robin drawing as a tribute to my little friends……. 

Pictures – A Wren

Everyone has a talent. I always emphasise one person can be great at something whilst another can be great at something completely different. Learning and understanding what a persons talents are key to good management. I am not an artist but, If I concentrate and practice, I can draw. No person should limit themselves to what they think they can do……

Pictures – Hummingbirds

We have some great little birds in the UK. I love Robins, Pied Wagtails, Blue Tits, our Housemartins who arrive in May and depart in September. In other countries though they benefit from birds who’s colour’s are amazing. hummingbirds are one of these. Just amazing. I decided to try and draw one. 


While I work on the next episode of The 100 Runes of Mystor and The Scotsmonauts, I thought I’d share another one of my lack of talents, drawing. I can’t really draw at all but I’ve got all the drawing gear you can shake a stick at. Pastel pencils, Prismacolor pencils, watercolor markers, watercolor pencils, acrylics and oils, I’ve got the lot. However, one thing lacking is talent. When I see what some artists can do I just shrink into a dark alley and hide. Anyway, you can’t be good at everything so…….. here’s Maisie. I drew her using a pigma micron 0.25mm pen. We lost our first cat Spike suddenly, which caused great angst as she’d been our little princess for 9 years. We put off replacing her as she was unique. However, we eventually relented and brought Maisie from the Cat Protection League, to our home. It’s taken a while but she’s settling in well. 

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