Face mask


I think I painted this self portrait in the early 1980’s. It’s disconcerting seeing my younger self. I used to like to hide my face away sometimes and the green face mask was fun to paint, although I remember it cracking as I painted! I did two versions as a friend bought one of them from a little exhibition I held. The other one has red and white earrings if I remember.

I know this was painted in oils on a homemade canvas. I think it was probably about 1ft square. The background was the pink wall in our room. The picture behind me was of a train by Cuneo. (not sure of the spelling). It was a print my mother got my hubby as he loves trains. I think I wore the red beret and yellow jumper to create some contrast to the green mask.


Morning glory seeds


Apologies to the seed company for using the photo. I hope they don’t mind.

Tomorrow, as the weather warms up, I’m going to plant some seeds for these plants. They are trumpet shaped and climb up a long stem. They open in the morning and fade by the evening. I did a painting of one of the plants a few years ago. I only had blue striped ones last time. The coloured ones look like they will be fab. Wish me lunch with them


My own flowers

Last year, painting of morning glory flowers and some poppies. I haven’t grown much from seeds this year. We do have some lettuce plants, but they have probably been drowned by the amount of torrential rain we’ve been having over the past few days. Some places have had a months rain in a day! That compared with six weeks of sunshine in April and May. As usual our weather is topsy-turvy. Basically because of where the United Kingdom is positioned. We get weather from every direction, the Atlantic, the Arctic, Siberia, even dust dragged up from the Sahara. We are a weather magnet!

I want to go and get some seeds and see if I can grow some nasturtiums for late summer bedding, and the butterfly caterpillars love them. They are a nice, spicy, bitter and peppery orange flavour when added to salads and cold soups.




A few flowers from the garden today. The flowers are starting to develop, the big summer plants are a bit swamped with ivy and scrubby bushes and so we have cut back branches and peeled ivy off trees a bit today. Only what you can do with a pair of secateurs and a small pruning saw.

We need to lay some pathways, and where a spring has erupted in the garden we are going to put a few pebbles to simulate a stream flowing down under the hedge. We live on a hill which is a very old Volcanic plug. The water percolates out further up the hill and we think because that was built on a few years ago it might have got diverted down towards our house. I don’t know….

Kitchen at night


I am just putting my phone on charge and I looked up and saw the light from the back door porch shining through and reflecting off the walls and the windows. As you can see I’m growing a lot of Christmas cacti and other plants including a baby oak and a sweet pepper plant on the windowsill. There are also glass mobiles hanging up there. Why? Because I got burgled twenty years ago and as well as an alarm I decided to make it as awkward as possible for anyone to try an climb through a window without knocking stuff off.

I think this might eventually turn into a painting. Night all


Day 30 ‘ornament’


I decided to do a more colour drawing for #uskstoke challenge today. I have lots of ornaments, mostly covered in dust I’m afraid.

Today is day 30 out of 38, so it’s just over a week till it finishes. A few people have kept going through the whole series and others have dipped in and out.

See you with more tomorrow…. X

Keys, today’s challenge with #uskstoke


Today’s #uskstoke challenge, day 18, keys.

Drew round the keys with a fibre tip ink pen. I then coloured in the different keys and fobs and the magazine and DIY instructions forĀ  my wire fairy. Finally I added some thick black felt pen to the instructions and around the keys.

The keys do look a bit chunky, but overall I think it’s OK?


Pen tops..


Here are the permanent pens I’m using for my sketches.

I just thought I’d post a picture because I liked the bright colours. I’ve actually got another challenge I’ve been given to post black and white photos for seven days, so I could alter this…


Of course you can use your photo editor to change the hue… _20200504_004437

Or create a negative image…. _20200504_004321

So what am I saying? If you have a smart phone, it’s fun to play with your phones photo software. You might be surprised what you can create.


Colourful, today’s usk challenge.

Today’s challenge was to draw something colourful. My eyes fell on an owl sculpture by a blacksmith who works at a Forge at Etruria, Stoke-on-Trent. She’s called Charis Jones and her company is called Sculpted Steel.

Behind the owl is a plate that my hubby painted at the Gladstone pottery museum in Longton.

I started by drawing the outlines in black ink. I then filled in the colours with permanent ink markers and a few coloured pencils.

The colours are not all accurate, but as the brief was colourful I added some to the books and cds in the background while trying not to overdo it.

I’ve included a reference photo to give you an idea of what I was working from.