Wednesday, 18 July 2018



I was hoping to go to do a re-enactment of the battle of Tewkesbury last weekend ( which I used to do quite regularly up until 2007), but, unfortunately, the forecast said that it would be between 26 and 27 degrees.

Previous experience has told me that this is too hot for me to fight in full plate and it is not wise to fight at Tewkesbury in anything less than full plate. There are usually about 2,000 to 3,000 men on the field . They come from multiple re-enactment societies and quite a lot of them are from other European countries. Hence their level of skill and training is variable and not all of them speak English.

Consequently, I decided to stay home- which was just as well. Some of the other Paladins went and they told me that the temperature went up to 30 degrees and there were lots of men passing out from the heat.

I had also had a nasty bash to the first joint of my right forefinger whilst training one of our newer fighters and, whist it was getting better and I had been making sure it stayed flexible, it was still at a stage when fighting battle for an hour might not have been the best policy.

I missed training last week, due to  getting back late from a trip to Oxford ( which I will blog about later), but went to training last night.

I made sure I wore steel gauntlets and , whilst I am still getting the odd ache and  twinge, barely notice my bad finger whist fighting.

Here is a picture I found of me advancing with the Duke of Somerset to take part in a melee. I think this might have been at Rochester Castle.

Until next time


Wednesday, 11 July 2018

Beautiful Blond


Here is a drawing of a beautiful blond boy from one of  my sketch books

Until next time


Wednesday, 4 July 2018

St Albans 2018


Last weekend I was at St Albans Country Show with seven other Paladins.

For the first time for absolutely ages we had a FLAT campsite. Here are some pictures of the encampment

As you can see, we formed a little crescent-shaped island of the Fourteenth century in a sea of plastic gazebos.

There was also a small group of Viking reenactors there, who camped just behind us and put on a reasonable fight display of swords, shields and dane-axes.

It was very hot with not a cloud in the sky , though, luckily, there was a bit of wind. We didn't get many people stopping to ask questions, try on armour etc, which meant we could stay in the shade a lot until we had to do our tourney.

The main area was in a corner of the field near trees, so got no wind. It was probably the hottest part of the site.

On Saturday I light armoured in jack, mail, legs and spaulders. We only had four fighters, but we still each managed two fights and a short melee in the main arena lasting( in total) about 15 minutes, before the heat got  to us

There was a sparse audience, but those that watched us seemed to appreciate the show..

The Sunday was verging on 30 degrees.  I had been for a walk round the stall set about the main area at about 2 Pm and , even in cassock and rochet( with a large straw hat) it was like being hammered by the sun.

Luckily, we had been moved to the small arena near to our camp, so there was some wind, but the Marshal went on in just a jack and I went on in just jack and mail to try to make the fights last as long as possible.

Less luckily, the grass in the small arena had been trampled flat and and was the colour and texture of straw, which meant that the footing was very slippery under medieval boots. I was even noticing it and I've got hobnailed boots.

Despite this, we still managed to do a reasonable fight for about fifteen minutes total.

This time we had a grand total of about eight people watching- including the children.

Still, the client was happy...

Until next time


Wednesday, 27 June 2018



Here is a commission piece I did for a friend.

She is a fan of the author Roger Zelazny's Princes of Amber series.

The characters can communicate by concentrating on Trump cards depicting each other ( rather like a sort of magical tarot cards)

She is fond of the character Benedict and asked me to do a painting of his trump. His card is described as showing him with long hair, in golden armour holding a lance covered in flowers with a horse behind him.

I opted to do a close up, as if someone was concentrating on the face.

  Until next time


Wednesday, 20 June 2018

Eltham 2018


Last weekend I took part in the Grand Medieval Joust at Eltham Palace.

As a member of the Paladins of Chivalry, I am only allowed to take photos before the public are on site, after they have left, or if I change back into modern kit.

I was able to get a shot of my tent, banner, standard and achievement of arms when it was finally all ready, but  not, unfortunately before the Duke of Lancaster had moved his car...

Here is another picture of my tent within the camp

I spent some time in the off-season painting the dags of the roof with the bishop's mitre badges.

The bishop's livery colours are black and white and one of his main badges is a red mitre( as can be seen on the standard), so I have painted red mitres on the white dags and white mitres on the black. As there were an odd number of dags, I painted a papal tiara on a red ground to go over the doorway.

The inside of the tent is dived in two by curtains, with my sleeping area behind. 

I have a small table set up as an alter in one corner and try to sing a mass at least once during the weekend. This time I sang it on Sunday morning soon after the site opened at ten.

You will notice from the first picture that I had a fire box set up in front of the tent. I lit a fire in it using flint and steel on Saturday ( only nicking myself once on the flint) and then used a coal from the fire to light my thurible (which can be seen hanging up in this picture) so I could cense the alter and bless the weapons in the arming tent.

There was a strong breeze all day Saturday and the pile of wood only lasted to mid afternoon.

The foot tourney went well and it wasn't too hot, as the sky stayed kindly overcast. I also had a lot of fun being the marshal and commentator for the kiddies battle later in the afternoon.

I closed the tent after the tourney on Sunday and started to pack some things up, which helped a lot when it came time to break camp.

All in all it was a good show.

Until next time


Wednesday, 13 June 2018

St David's Gate


I often put interesting buildings into my Landscape of Dreams and utilise watercolours I have painted in the past,

Here is a watercolour of the gatehouse of St David's Cathedral.

I haven't reused this image in a oil painting to date, but , as an interesting building, it may well find its way into a future painting.

Until next time


Wednesday, 6 June 2018

More work to painting


I have recently done some more to the oil painting I am working on.

I have been working on shadows and distance and it now looks like this.

I will post again when I have done more to it

Until next time