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“I did n’t follow this to see that…”

I can imagine that if you follow a cartoonist, you might expect to see nothing but cartoons on this site.It’s a fair point but then there are other things to look at. I take the odd photograph and the odder the better sometimes. The following picture is the last one in the series of ‘shops with daft names’ and by way of a change this one’s in Cheltenham and not Sheffield, and the sentiment in the shop name is one that is about right to close the subject.


I’ve discovered since starting these blogs some time ago that they are perhaps the equivalent of ‘chatting in the pub’. As I’ve not been in a pub for some time and have never considered myself a ‘regular’ at any establishment like that, perhaps I’m not really to know. At least with these sort of one way conversations ( I do get comments, which are much appreciated ) I end the conversation as sober as I began it.

I’ve also discovered that the blogs with the most views are not necessarily the ones with cartoons in them, which if I was of sensitive disposition I might feel bad about, and I bloody well do! Getting used to rejection comes with the territory with this sort of thing, now leave me alone to well in my own despondency. Here’s a drawing , I don’t give a stuff if you like it or not. I’m in one of those moods, I’ll be back to normal soon. Perhaps I need a visit to the pub.


If you have been, thanks for following, I can’t believe that I’ve just topped the 400!

One of those ladies…


She’s visiting a Country House somewhere in Great Britain, which she still insists on calling it.She knows about these places as she looks after one on a purely voluntary basis near her home in Norfolk, and tries to stop small children crawling over the fine furniture or bouncing on the four poster in the master bedroom. The bed would not survive the bouncing as it’s only the fact that the woodworm is holding hands that it stays together. She’s not sure of what to make of the recently acquired ‘art’ in this place but is told that it cost thousands, she’d prefer a Constable any day.



More on my Pont project

This is nothing to do with  French bridge building, but my recent plans to revisit the work of Graham Laidler : Pont

Here’s an example of what he did about the British and below is my own version, but mine is just a rough for the time being. I’m trying to go through as many of his versions as possible and in this instance the drawings have a similar construction, as the subject leaves little to be updated really. Other subjects may well have changed. My exhibition is in August next year so I have plenty of time. Sometimes this is not a good idea as I have a tendency to leave everything to the last minute, and at times produce my better work when under pressure.

Anyhow, today was a simply beautiful sunny day here, bright blue skies and lovely sunshine all day, but cold. It would have been easy to use this good weather to go out for a random walk, but I kept my discipline and got on with the drawing. With Bruce Springsteen at some considerable volume the day has gone well.


Punch was a very well known magazine in the UK which was a haven for cartoonists and it was always my ambition in the early days to get something published in there. I managed it once when the magazine had a brief revival after going out of publication, and that was my Punch career over as it folded properly. Hopefully nothing to do with my contribution. Pont was popular when it was in it’s heyday, which I missed. However, it does seem to still exist on-line as a repository for a load of cartoons from it’s archives, so it’s still making money from the cartoons. I wonder if the cartoonists or their estates make anything? It would be good to think that they do.

Here’s my own modest take on the one above.pont-bighserough238

I hope to get that lovely feeling of light and dark into the final drawing. It will have the same title as the Pont  version and an acknowledgement to him too.

More news on my exhibition will be posted as we get closer to the deadline.

This is worth a read

How does she do it?

I know I’m a bit biased but this blog is worth a read. It’s all about these little chaps, who happen to be my grandsons.


“Aulde Bribery”, it’s the time of year…


This is from last year when I was commissioned to do a Christmas card for a very loyal client of mine, who’s company mends large trucks and is keen on motor racing in his limited spare time. It reflects the big story at the time which with today’s sort of news seems a little insignificant, that is the fixing of emissions that VW got involved in by tampering with software. He’s asked me to do another card for this year, which is kind of him and he must like them, but for me it seems an odd way to market yourself. Perhaps it’s just the cynic in me, but Christmas cards have a very short shelf life and are probably seem by the wrong people. ( He always sends me one of my own cards, and I don’t have any big trucks to mend, or to drive )

When I worked for the printing company locally there was always a big effort at Christmas to send out shedloads of paper with Season’s Greetings on them, or a calendar.Our best ever idea in that regard was Witty’s Little Red Book, which was a collection of overheard remarks made in the office heard by one of my colleagues, who happened to be called Witt. Some of the stuff in there was a little politically incorrect but almost all of it funny in some way, and it was fun to do.They let me loose on cartoons for it too.shedloads190

Shedloads, the word gives me the excuse to include this.


In the late seventies ( yes I really am that old! ) my then business partner and I used to go to some trouble to give out Christmas pressies to keep our clients sweet, and in the main it  did. Just the odd bottle of wine, nothing over the top, and we always did our own label. When I went on my own I gave out very small bottle of whisky ( I was doing well, it was tax deductible! ) and I did a personalised label for each of them. I called it Aulde Bribery and the sub heading and contents read: “99% proof that you gave me a job last year”.

It went down better than a Christmas card, in both senses of the phrase.

I shan’t be mentioning Christmas again,( Bah Humbug! ), I’ve used up all I can usefully say on it here, but I hope you have a good one.fatherx229


It’s one of those bookshops…

…with no books most people have seen before, and with the most esoteric titles. It’s in metroland of course, where else would anyone buy books like these, and it’s almost next door to the £3-50 loaf bakery. Incidentally I am addicted to the bread from this place, and last week on my most recent visit to metroland I strolled over to take a little look round the district. Avoiding as best I could the oncoming stream of meedja people trying to make a film about the 70’s, I found another branch of the bakery and popped in to shell out for some lunch: a half baguette filled with salt beef and pickle salad. I steeled myself for the price and handed over a nice new transparent fiver from which I got no change whatsoever. I swallowed deeply but bit even deeper and have to say, that was some good sandwich, but a fiver!!!

I never got into the bookshop preferring to view from the outside. God knows how much toilet paper retails at. Middle class people like what I am tend to call it “bathroom tissue”


Sorry about the fuzzy picture, I think it’s due to chortling camera shake.Incidentally, the Sainsbury’s mention in the article below is still as good. Keeping up their standards, good for them.

Five star bread and a five star Sainsbury Store.Go and try them both.No one’s paying for this ad.


There’s another talent…


Here’s another image to take your mind off the news. Another fellow graduate of Manchester College of Art and someone who has developed into a fine printmaker. Ros Forster has an exhibition at the beginning of December in Derbyshire, and if you can get there, get there. A talented cutter of lino, the resulting prints are well worth a view and a dip into the bank account.

For more details go here: Exhibition in December

And don’t forget to go there.

Here’s another fine example.


Leonard Cohen…


I used to dislike his stuff when I was a student, all the girls loved it. I love it now. Great songwriter and performer, if you’re in the mood.

This will take your mind of it…


Drawing and painting is therapy and we could all do with some of that at the moment. These are landscapes by a bloke I went to college with way back in the 60’s and who had the somewhat dubious pleasure of sharing the same house with me and others in Rusholme, in Manchester. It was certainly not a place to rush home to and when my father visited to help me with my luggage I detected certain misgivings not just about the area, but about the premises. I would not let him through the front door with all its bell pushes and when he asked me to describe it I merely said “spartan”, quickly followed by, “but better than school”. He went very quiet. If memory serves me right there was a lady who worked nights upstairs.

In the next room lived Joe Wilson and another bloke called Bob, both of them fine art students. My abiding memory of Joe from that time has nothing to do with art but more to do with music. Walking into his room, probably to ask him something inconsequential, I could hear very loud music with Joe on the bed playing what’s known as air guitar these days with a broom handle. I left it for a short while before interrupting him with my request. At least he had his pants on.

Joe’s been doing more than that since and in my recent trip to the North I met him with Dave a mutual friend and former Manchester College of Art lecturer. I haven’t seen Joe since 1967.

He’s now one of Ireland’s foremost landscape painters and looking at his work you can see why. He goes out there to draw these scenes, walking the mountains of Ireland and recording them in all their glory.



Hopefully you will find these as therapeutic to view as I did. The energy in them and the feeling for colour and mood are really something to behold. All painted with palette knife from large charcoal drawings.

He’s come a long way from playing air guitar in Rusholme.

To see more of Joe’s work take a look at his website: Joe Wilson

Or take a look at this article with more in depth words about Joe and his painting:


Election, the result.

How they voted…


Blank looks

On hearing the news…