Coming up next year…


I’m working on a little book written by my chum Gordon Thorburn, ( Men and Sheds ) who apart from writing about sheds and bomber pilots from the Second World War ( Books about all sorts ), has written a little tome about…well, I’ll leave exactly what it’s about until I have it all ready.

I’m doing the drawings for it and hope to publish it on-line in the New Year, or perhaps will be able to make a start before Christmas, as you’ll have plenty of time to read, learn, and digest. We’ll see.

It will be on this site every week, on the same day, until it’s demise. I found it entertaining and witty. I suppose it is aimed at children so it did suit me very well.

Here’s a rough of one of the drawings for it, followed by the next version, some of you illustrator people out there might be interested in the technicalities: there are none. It’s drawn straight onto layout paper with a Pentel sign pen, then drawn again, then drawn again for the final, then mounted onto board with Studio Gum ( today’s equivalent of Cow Gum ) and some pastel half tone and shadow might be added and perhaps a bit of whiting out of some areas with Dr PH. Martin’s Bleed Proof White ( I kid you not! ). If it needs any more surgery after that then I use a scalpel to cut out or amend, cutting through the top layer of layout paper. Then the final is scanned and if necessary some final tweaks are made, digitally.

This is drawing one, followed by drawing two, final will follow when the book is published here.



When Tolstoy…

siberiamastertolstoySnow has evaporated in London where I am at present, here’s another of my series on Siberian Guards from way back. The last of these for the time being, until perhaps we have snow again soon.

I’m now going to go on a search for a suitable Christmas image that does not include robins, turkeys or white bearded men with a chimney habit.


Lark Arse Ending and toast that takes off…

Whoever designed or made our toaster may well have had the devil in him, or her, on the day they put in the springs. The beast has the launch capacity unseen on any other toasters and frequently send pieces clear of the launch pad. The Sourdough frequently hits the floor, necessitating the “2 Second Rule”, wherein any food like object that hits the deck can be consumed afterwards as long as it has only laid there for 2 seconds. This does not apply to poached eggs.

The toaster sometimes launches the bread so that it lands in another loading bay,  that is some clever engineering for a simple toast maker.

As this morning’s breakfast took off, it did so the to the tune of Vaughan Williams and one of my late father’s favourite jokes. Whenever it came on he would intone “Lark Arse Ending”. Some truth in this as I believe they only sing when on the way down from a great height.With toast, it makes hardly any sound as it flies through the air. So you have to be quick.



Time to do this again…


As we approach the bookbuying season it’s time to remind you to be a revolutionary. Publishers are notorious for churning out the most appalling rubbish in the hope that someone will buy it for Christmas for an unsuspecting friend or relative. Those books by celebs are the very worst. My late father had his own revolutionary way of dealing with it, and getting his own back, by simply turning the book on the shelf. Turning it upside down at the same time helps even more.

Anything by a politician about him or herself with the title that sounds like it’s been a struggle is fair game. All books that are meant to have been written by a footballer.

Turn anything about Donald Trump. The same applies to any cookery books that have the words ‘made easy’ in the title.

The same applies to any cookery books that have the words ‘made easy’ in the title.

Children’s books by TV stars. Turn all of them ( Apart from those by David Walliams, his are quite good ).

Leave any books about gardening as they are.

Every single book that has the words ‘Self-Help’ in the title. If you could self-help, you would and would not need a book. Turn them.

All turning must be done in large bookshops owned by conglomerates, independents are excluded from the hit list. As are charity bookshops which will be waiting for the turned books early in the New Year.

Vive la Revolution!