The Tools of the Masters

Staring down at the old and almost colourless water colour paints in the glass case, I was moved by their timeworn appearance and history. They belonged to the great English artist JMW Turner and there I was, actually looking at them.

There’s something wonderfully magical about standing close to and looking down at the tools of a famous artist, or writer for that matter. I think these tools hold within themselves something of the mystery of the person’s genius and exquisite talent. To think that you are actually seeing the very objects used by those masterful fingers guided by a beauty of mind, heart and vision, can be quite overwhelming.

I looked up at Turner’s magnificent water colour sketches hanging on the walls of the hall and couldn’t help but wonder how much of the paint spilt all over that aged pallet, was used in those very sketches.

Later, I left the National Gallery inspired and with new vigour.


Animals are always true to their natures; it’s human beings who betray theirs. That’s why I’m often on the side of animals. I’ve long let go of that absurd little dictum that only human beings are the crowning glory of creation and that somehow they stand apart or above all of nature.

Light and Shadow


While walking this morning my eye caught this beautiful example of light and shadow. I was struck particularly by the dappled light on the one tree trunk. I’m haunted by light and shadow.

Our Mortality

I was walking through a churchyard and stumbled on this little scene. Coming face to face with our mortality can be freeing, especially when we’ve grown too serious and intense about life.

Finding a Lost Part

The other day I found a pen I thought I had lost and felt such a sense of celebration. It had been part of a special period in my personal history, hence the joy. 

It got me thinking about those wonderful moments when we suddenly find a lost part of ourselves and have the joy of integrating it back into our lives. It’s often the very wound itself caused by the loss, that points and guides us back to that part.

I couldn’t help thinking of this when I took the above image.I think its true to say that when you look carefully through the wound, you actually see what was lost and where it fits.

That Moment

That moment:

When you realize that your closeness to another human being is mysteriously nurtured by the infinite distance between you both.

Thoughts and Images

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