This painting shows the ginnel (alley) behind the street I used to live on. I went there last week in the rain, for no particular reason other than I was nearby. I set myself the challenge of trying to paint, without exaggeration, the flat grey light of a grey street on a rainy day. Dreich, to use a good Scots word. There are no trees and you can’t really tell if the scene before you is summer or winter. The grass and slime on the stone is bright green year round. When l lived there I used to say the reason I knew it was summer was the snails climbing up the windows. I like the way the wheelie bins have to be carefully parked in order not to roll away down the steep slope. I’m not sure if the painting is finished or not so I’ve propped it up in my studio to observe it for a while.
Denmark Street, Lancaster
Limited edition prints are now available of my oil painting “The Last Skydancer”, which I painted earlier this year in memory of Hope and Sky, two young hen harriers who went missing, presumed shot, shortly after fledging from their nests on the Forest of Bowland. Following the recent news of a further five hen harriers missing in Bowland and elsewhere in Northern England, rendering them all but extinct in the country, I decided to try and raise some money to help tackle the illegal persecution of these beautiful birds. I’ve never seen a hen harrier except on the road signs around the Forest of Bowland. I would like to hope that this painting is mis-named, and that one day I will see a Skydancer swooping over the moors near where I live.
£16 from every print I sell will be donated to the campaign group Birders Against Wildlife Crime, to raise awareness of the plight of the hen harrier.
You can order a print of The Last Skydancer here. Please note that the prints are printed on demand, and delivery times are up to one month. Postage is free within the UK.
The Last Skydancer. Limited edition print