Monday 20 February 2023


(Mixed media on canvas panel, 10x12 in)

Another portrait of a building on Gateshead High Street, this one sadly scheduled for demolition I understand. The original building dates from around 1800 and the current pub frontage from about 1900. The pub was previously called the Phoenix (from at least 1873) but was commonly known as Curleys after early 20th century licensee Will Curley (who was a boxer) and later officially changed its name.

Since painting this, I've sold it to the grandson of a former landlord of the pub.


Sunday 19 February 2023


(Acrylic on canvas panel, 10 x 8 in)

This small work is what I think of as a “building portrait”. The shop stands on Gateshead High Street and even now that the pork butcher’s shop has been replaced by something less interesting, the early 19th century frontage stands out from the surrounding buildings.

I based the painting on a photograph of the building I took some time after the shop had closed. Eventually, through the magic if the Interweb, I was able to find a photograph of the window when the shop was open and include that information.

Friday 17 February 2023

WIP - Holy Island Water Tower


WIP - Holy Island Water Tower
(oil on canvas, 12 x 12 in)

Not a great day at the North of England Art Club yesterday. I put this painting back on the easel to resume work on it and squeezed out some fresh paint onto my palette.

Then I noticed that a bottle of Liquin had fallen over and leaked out quite a bit of the contents into the bottom of my paint box. Liquin sets like a particularly sticky toffee. So, scraping out the Liquin as best I could, I started to clean the residue with white spirit and soapy water.

Almost done, I knocked over the inside tray, spilling all my brushes and tubes of paint onto the floor. My back is giving me real trouble at the moment, so by the time I’d dried off the paint box and picked up all the brushes and paint, all I was fit for was storing the painting back in the racks, putting away the easel and going home.

I haven't been back since, which is a situation in need of remedying.

Wednesday 15 February 2023

Up Pink Lane

Up Pink Lane
(Acrylic on board, 10 x 10 in)

In doing this small painting I was reminded what it was that put me off painting Newcastle: all those neoclassical windows and other details! Give me wonky vernacular any day.


Friday 10 February 2023

WIP - Dietz

Dietz (WIP)
(Acrylic on canvas board, 8 x 10 in)

I’m working away on two different paintings at the moment, but Friday at Gateshead Art Society tends to signal the start of something fresh. And so it was today: I’ve been meaning to make something of a photograph I took many years ago of a butcher’s shop on Gateshead High Street. It’s no longer a butcher’s but still retains the interesting Art Deco character that set it apart from the surrounding vernacular buildings. Just blocked in so far.

Thursday 2 February 2023

Forth Lane

Forth Lane
(Acrylic on canvas board, 10 x 8 in)

A small painting, finally finished bar the varnishing. My first painting of the year and the first of Newcastle in quite some time. It's a lane just round the corner from Newcastle Arts Centre.