Snow Wood

THERE’S BEEN snow on the ground for twelve days but it’s only at sunset, after a day of chores, that I’ve made any attempt to sketch it. As the light fades and the snow takes on a hint of a pinkish tone, as Blackbird gives its alarm call. Today we’ve had Nuthatch and Treecreeper in […]

In Search of Uncle Fred

WHATEVER HAPPENED to great uncle Fred? Last summer, I found a 1901 census record for my great grandad, George Swift, his second wife Sarah Ann and their youngest son, my grandad, Maurice, then aged 24, living at 198, Hanover Street, Sheffield. Just as I’d expected; but I’d never heard any mention of their son Frederick […]

Colours of Britain

GIVE OR TAKE a few colours that have been swapped around since, this is the box of Winsor & Newton’s artists’ watercolours that I took with me on a tour of England, Wales and Scotland, when I compiled my Britain sketchbook for Collins (1981). One review commented on ‘the brownish greenish charm’ of my sketches. […]

Heading for the Hills

DRAWING THIS 3D impression of northern England makes me realise how much hill country there is in my new extended study area, which now includes the whole of Yorkshire; Dales, North Yorks Moors, South Pennines and the Wolds. And I don’t intend to ignore the Lake District beyond the north west borders of the county […]