Fallen Tree, Clapham Common, 1987

A Storm

All that is taking place in the UK right now disturbs and saddens me deeply.

I have been looking at sketches, drawings and paintings that I have done of my home country over the years. It is a place I love, but what I recorded of the landscape and environment is curiously sparse.

This seems to point to the possibly obvious fact that I have been excited by travel and encounters with the foreign, even if it has been a fairly modest and conservative exploration compared to many – no year-long travels in the Far East or treks through the rain forest for me! Nevertheless, the journeys I have been privileged to experience always opened my eyes a little wider and helped form me as a person.

This is why I find the sense of cultural and societal retrenchment at the heart of Brexit so depressing.

The featured image above was made after the Great Storm of October 15th 1987.


The storm ripped through the southern part of the country. Its force and the devastation it wrought were entirely unexpected. I drew the huge uprooted tree the following day on Clapham Common. It is always sad to see something so grand and unique destroyed. Perhaps a new sapling was planted, but it cannot truly replace what was lost, and certainly I will never see it grow to a like stature in my lifetime.

It feels an apt image for our times.

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