Working in my studio


My Daily History Blog for Monday 17th September 2012

Today is Monday the 17th September 2012AD

Jean-Bernard-Leon Foucault, physicist who used the pendulum to prove that the world rotates born this day [some sources say the 18th] in 1819. He also made an early attempt to measure the speed of light, discovered eddy currents and is credited with naming the gyroscope.

David Dunbar Buick, American automobile pioneer born 1854. He founded the Buick Motor Company and created one of the most successful motor brand names in automobile history. I once drove one from Bathurst to Sydney. Man was that a hell of a car!

642. Arabs conquer Alexandria and destroy the Great Library.

1871. The Mont Cenis railway tunnel opens in Switzerland.

Anno Domini.


Berowra, in the Hornsby shire, north of Sydney comes from the Aboriginal and means ‘place of many winds’. Neighbouring suburbs are Berowra Heights and Berowra Waters.

‘An arm and a leg’ means something is very expensive and 24/7 means it is open or operating every hour of the day. It can also means ‘get on with the job!’

Watercolour Tip.

Samuel Prout, painter of watercolours born this day in 1783. A master of Architectural painting, He was appointed ‘Painter in Water-Colours in Ordinary’ to King George iv and later to Queen Victoria. Pure genius at transparent washes!

Typical monday with lots of shopping and household chores. However I did manage some painting in the afternoon. Cantonese fillet steak for dinner this evening. A new culinary adventure. I wonder how it will turn out!

Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!

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Today is Sunday the 16th September 2012AD

Antoine Parent, French mathematician born this day in 1666AD. He did extensive work on the elements of 3D geometry which were later the mainstay for tension and compression members in beams and trusses.

Dennis Conner, 4-time America’s Cup winning skipper born 1943. He was voted America’s greatest sailor by his peers and was the helmsman of the yacht which was finally defeated by Alan Bond’s wing keeled Challenger ‘Australia 11’ in 1983. However he managed to get the cup back from Australia in 1987.

1741. George Frederick Handel’s ‘The Messiah’, premieres in Dublin.

1848. Slavery is abolished in all French Territories.

1940. The Luftwaffe attacks Central London.

Anno Domini.


Coolgardie is a small town in Western Australia 558 kilometres from Perth. In its heyday it was the third largest community in Western Australia. Mining alluvial gold was a major part of its economy. It’s population dwindled to about 200 as the gold ran out and it became a virtual ‘ghost town’. However with better technology gold mining has recommenced be it on a small scale and the population is now over 2000 mainly due to tourism. The name is thought to come either from the Aboriginal ‘coolgabbi’ meaning ‘tree near a watering hole’ or ‘Coorgardie’ the name of a bungarra lizard.

‘A nipper’ is a junior surf lifesaver and ‘sunnies’ are sun glasses.

Watercolour Tip.

After much thought I have decided to redo my palette. I am going back to using some of the more traditional colours that were popular in the 1930’s. More earth colours and staining colours. I will publish it as soon as I am happy with the result. Colours are a very personal thing and you may find it useful to do a similar exercise.

Lazy sunday thank goodness, after a wonderful dinner party. My daughter, Emma is becoming a very good cook, especially so with pastries and cakes!

Pieces of eight! Pieces of eight!