Daily Painting – Day 1

I’ve recently been reading a book called Daily Painting by Carol Marine which I can really recommend. It’s about an online movement of artists who strive to complete a single, small work every day to hone their skills. It’s a beautiful book that really does a great job of convincing you to step back from overly complicated work and just paint something to completion every day. After that, try to sell it. I really like the examples of artwork in the book, and it also contains a lot of really great painting instruction.

Cards on the table, I am a terrible painter. I’ve dabbled, but most of my successes have been flukes. I’ve been trying to get back into it more and more, but with supplies costing a lot more than I can currently afford, I’m just working digitally right now. I’m starting small, with the oil paints feature in Manga Studio 5, and learning the basics. I realise it’s some way from real paint on canvas, but from what I can tell the brushes behave a lot like the real thing and it’s a valuable tool to learn. With that in mind, here is what I hope will be my first of many daily paintings.


It took me about an hour and a half, and I’m pretty happy with the result. My source was an image found online (I don’t eat enough fruit to support a still life art career) and with it being digital there’s no canvas to sell, but there it is nonetheless, my first daily painting. There are a few bits I don’t like, I think the bowl is pretty lifeless and there’s not much separation between the town and the table, but I think the apple turned out pretty good. As I go on, it might turn out I don’t really have the time keep the habit going, but for now I’m quite exciting about watching my progress.


A Quick Round Up

Hey guys, I know updates have been a little thin on the ground lately but with me leaving my job and setting off in bold new directions (TBA) it has been a bit of a hectic few weeks. I just wanted to stop in to give you a quick update on how things have been going and what you can expect in the upcoming weeks and months.

Firstly, I’m changing up how I get my writing out there. For a while now I’ve been writing short stories, Novels during NaNoWriMo and little bit of flash fiction, and I’ve generally taken the approach of posting the Flash Fiction in the blog and hoarding everything else while I find time to edit it. I want to get in the habit of producing a little bit more and really working my reluctant Rewriting bones. With that in mind, I’m going to move on from the flash fiction for a bit and try to really produce longer, 5000 word-ish stories and post those up straight to the blog too. I’m also considering leaving them there permanently rather than pulling them when I publish to Amazon. In the past, I’ve enrolled books in KDP select but the benefits for that programme are a little thin on the ground these days. Even free book days have declined, barely generating the spikes in the graph they used to. So, all things considered, I think I have more to gain by leaving stuff here to draw in readers. Anyway, we’ll see how it goes.

Secondly, I’ve been trying to get back into art and cartooning. For years I was interested in webcomics but I’ve never really had the time I want to devote to it. I’m hoping to get back into it shortly, but I’ll give you more info about that later. With that in mind, I’ve been digging out some of the more recommended books on developing one’s artistry. My first stop was the highly recommended Drawing of the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards. I have never been that great at drawing from sight, but after a couple of exercises I was producing pictures like these!

Superman SketchGarfield Sketch










Superman’s donning a bit of an afro, but I was still very impressed. The book is still in print and I really recommend it if you’re interested in upping your drawing skills. I’m hoping to keep it up, as well as branching out into painting, so expect to see a lot more art posted here among the writing.

Lastly, I’ve been trying to make a little out of my free time. I’m usually spending my downtime playing games, and I’ve been branching out into youtube. So, if you want to see me do a really bad job playing The Elder Scrolls: Arena, or do a slightly better job at Sim City 4, then check out my Youtube channel and let me know what you think .

So, that’s that. I’m going to be more diligent about updates from this point on, and I’ll be keeping you up to date with more outside the writing, but I today I just wanted to remind you I’m alive, and still creating wherever I can!

Introducing British Gamer

Screen Shot 2015-08-08 at 18.45.26

Hey guys,

I have a small announcement today. As you know, I’ve been running this blog for all my various interests for a few years now, but my main focus has always been on promoting my writing. Still, I’m a gamer and I love writing about what I’m playing, and in the past that has all gone here too. Lately I’ve been starting to feel like that sort of stuff doesn’t really it as well. I’ve been wanting to get deeper in the subject of games and share from my Youtube channel a little more, but I’ve been put off because it has felt like a bad fit.

So, I started a new blog for all that stuff. There’s not much to look at just yet, but it’s going by the very original title of British Gamer, and if you’ve been coming here for my gaming posts, you’ll want to go there instead. Let me know what you think.

Those Aren’t Biscuits – 033 – Windows 10 isn’t awful

Those Aren’t Biscuits is a weekly geek culture podcast pretending to be a professionally made comedy show. Hosted by Owen Adams and Jonathan Cadotte, it is probably the most important podcast in of the 20th Century. 

In this week’s Biscuits, radio sound effects, operating system talk, shout outs go wrong, and we’re both ill and tired.

As always, you can download directly or visit our Libsyn page, and subscribe on iTunes.

Free Short Story Collection on Kindle Today!

twocephalopods3Hey guys,

My collection of Flash Fiction, Two Cephalopods Walk Into A Bar is free on kindle today!

If you’ve enjoyed the fiction I’ve posted here in the past, then I really think you’ll enjoy this book. It contains sixteen short works in a range of genres, thriller, horror, sci-fi, and the occasional comedy.

So, if you have a kindle or the kindle app on your iOS/Android device then pop along to Amazon and give it a go!