12 January

Yesterday morning I needed to go to the supermarket for our weekly shop but my car wouldn’t start, the battery was completely flat. I had a new battery fitted by the RAC in November so I put it on charge and took Ginny’s car instead. When I checked the battery voltage mid afternoon it hadn’t risen above 4.75 volts so I called the RAC. Unfortunately the membership I got with the car expired in December soI had to pay for the fallout, they did say they would refund the money if the battery proved to be faulty. They gave me an eta of three hours but in fact the mechanic called me just over an hour later to say he was on his way. He did all the battery checks and got the car started, it turns out the battery is fine I just haven’t used the car enough to keep it charged and the battery charger I was using is too old to charge modern batteries properly (it’s probably 25 years old!) The car was fine this morning and I have ordered a new charger from Amazon. A big thank you to Paul from the RAC for getting me back on the road.

11 January

“Playing games with the faces, she said the man in the gabardine Mac was a spy…” A line from America by Simon and Garfunkel that I always think of when I do this sort of exercise. I put down various size blobs of paint then when it’s dry I try to find faces in them. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t but it’s always fun to do.

10 January

The weekend challenge from Purely watercolour is to paint this view in an hour. I took less than an hour actually painting but I did stop for breakfast between the first and second washes! I didn’t do any preliminary drawing, straight in with the brush.

9 January

I seem to be fascinated by London buses recently so I have painted another one in watercolour without using a brush, just plenty of water, an old credit card and a stick. This is an RT from the early sixties, I used to go to school on these when I started grammar school although they were gradually being replaced by the newer routemaster buses which were slightly more comfortable.

8 January

Taking a leaf out of the Victorian painters book. If you want to paint a nude put her in a classical setting. So this is what I have done, perhaps I should have sketched in pencil first so I could have corrected her wonky arm!

5 January

This weeks challenge from Purely watercolour features a couple of sparrows. When we lived in London sparrows were everywhere and came to the garden in large chattering groups. Here in Dorset they are fairly rare and our bird feeders are visited by blue tits, great tits, coal tits, long tailed tits, nuthatches robins and dunnocks. A lot more colourful but I miss the sparrows. Perhaps there is a way of attracting them to the garden, I will see what I can find out.

4 January

At last I have finished my acrylic portrait of Claire that I started in November! I don’t usually take that long but I got some of the features badly wrong first time and couldn’t work out why so I left it a few weeks and came back with fresh eyes. The model approves so that’s a relief.