Sunday, 24 November 2019


I've barely painted anything this Summer and Autumn and my artist friend J. is always saying that there is enough in my sketchbooks to provide inspiration - so I decided I would open one of the sketchbooks randomly at a page and that would be the inspiration for my next painting.
It opened here.

Eeek! So many other better sketches, so little time.
However a decision is a decision and I started with the top right.
Seriously, what is this supposed to be?


Stay with me - it does get better.

Next was the sketch bottom right.
Minimalism is the thing!

I gave it a carrot for Rike's challenge theme "Fruit and Veggies" at "Art Journal Journey".


Then I found a page in another sketchbook just waiting for a little something extra -  which happened to be a plum, also suitable for Rike's challenge.


And finally I rescued an old carrot which was hanging about with two old flower friends, for a colourful finish.


My favourite is "A SINGLE PLUM".
Do you have a favourite?

I really enjoyed this experiment.  Maybe I'll try it again with a better sketchbook page.

Wednesday, 13 November 2019


We've had a rollicking year in the garden and our five freezers are now full of frozen produce.

Our runner beans were very successful this year but this one got away.

He's running off to join in with Rike's challenge at "Art Journal Journey" where the theme is "Fruit and Veggies".

I painted this with the ancient Windows paint program and a mechanical mouse.  It's great fun painting with the mouse because it has its own ideas.
The background was filled in with my "real paintings" using Photoshop.

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I promised you some photos of our coastal walk last month.
We walked along a part of the Fife Coastal Path over several days, always returning to our cottage each day.

The path went through seaside villages.
A very large bull was in a field, thankfully fenced in, although I wouldn't like to have disturbed him.

A view of Crail, a pretty village with a harbour.

This is Cellardyke, the village before Anstruther.
Imagine you've come to the end of the coastal path going to the village of Anstruther and you start walking along this street.  It seemed to go on for ever and after it there were two more long similar streets.  It was very strange and spooky as we didn't expect it. 

On the right is St. Fillan's cave in Pittenweem where a hermit, St. Fillan, lived for many years.
If you are interested you can read about it HERE

Probably Pittenweem or St. Monans.

Probably St. Monans.   Some of the seaside village photos are very alike, although they have their own distinct ambience and we do know where we are when we are in them.

I hope you enjoyed your little look at the walk along the coastal path.  It is so varied and beautiful, both the walk by the sea and the individual villages and small towns on the way.

And if you wanted a change from the coastal path there were immense stretches of sea and sand beaches to walk along.

Thursday, 17 October 2019


Where do ideas comes from?  Everywhere and nowhere.
I found these three paintings while browsing in my sketchbooks.

A page waiting for something to happen,

a fish

and a strange rectangle.

Together with the theme "Dreams or Wishes" chosen by Eileen at "Art Journey Journey" they became


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We were no sooner back from house-sitting for a friend than we were off again to a cottage in the ancient Kingdom of Fife which overlooked this marvellous view with the sea in the far distance.

Every morning and evening we walked around the beautiful area.

We did see a red squirrel running around right beside the sign the first time we walked past.

The ruined cottage was just down the road from where we were staying.  I rather liked it.

Every day we walked along a part of the Fife Coastal path and I'll show you some of the walk in the next post.

Tuesday, 17 September 2019


Hello everybody.
I didn't expect to be away from Blogland so long but a good friend asked if we would like to stay in her cottage while she was away on holiday.   As she lives in an beautiful part of Scotland, it was an offer we accepted immediately.

This little burn was on one of our walks, close to the cottage.

One of the (many) first things I wanted to do when I came home was make art for Erika, who is hosting "Art Journal Journey" this month with the delightful theme "Polka-dots, stripes, plaids or patterns".

We've been having a massive clear-out, including paintings and other art objects and this little sampler was one which I saved from the going-out box.

I thought it would be fun to make a similar sampler digitally using bits of old paintings and went through many attempts before finding simpler is often better.

Of course the garden has gone crazy and I quite like when it does that.

The tomatoes are larger than ever before and grow very well in Scotland both outside and in an unheated open greenhouse.

Last post I showed the upside-down wife

and promised you the upside-down husband. Here he is just as I quickly drew him, upside down

and here he is the right way up.

Hahaha!  I think he has managed to acquire a pet from another planet, and I'm not too sure about him either.  He's also brought a strange plant along with him (or maybe it's a lamp?).  Do you like his hat?

Hastily moving on, Mr.E's Sweet Peas are still doing well and here is Douglas to show them to you.

Once again I'm glad to be back and I look forward to visiting you again.

Wednesday, 28 August 2019


The month of August is the time for the Edinburgh Festival when Edinburgh goes crazy with drama, comedy, music, art, dance, books and so much more and the streets are full of happy visitors.

It's also the time when I and Mr. E. helped by Douglas visit the Book Festival first thing most mornings to have a scone (or two) and coffee.
This year Douglas brought a friend along.

Douglas also helps to drive us into town and of course has his own special street.

Aren't we both lucky to have Douglas!

* * * * * * *

I had to make another piece for my friend Gill who is hosting "Art Journal Journey" this month with the theme "Anything with Eyes".

Those of you who still do or used to travel by plane for work will be familiar with the term "The Red Eye" when we are awake at an unearthly morning hour to catch a plane and even worse trying to look reasonably intelligent when we get to our destination.

I made a collage to remind myself that I don't have to do that now.


Manic festivalling leaves little time for making art but as the timetable was all upside down I drew some upside down small drawings each under two inches (5 cms) in height.



Don't you think the wife is rather good?  There is no way I could have drawn her like this the right way up. I like her hairdo and frock, though maybe not the shoes.  Not too sure about her pet, though, do you think it is a flying cat? 

Come back next week to see her upside down husband. Can you wait?

Thursday, 1 August 2019


It's always exciting to find what the new challenge is at "Art Journal Journey" and this month Gill is asking us to make art on "Anything with Eyes".

Of course I immediately thought of the one-eyed gardener and here he is, looking pretty pleased with his garden.

I'm pretty pleased with our garden too which has been looking its best with all the hot sun and cool rain.
Come along the Cobbled Path

to where the little sheep is looking after the yellow oxalis in the Rock Garden

and the most beautiful geum ever is flowering in the New Flowers Bed.

I hope everything is flowering in your world too and see you again soon.