Saturday 25 January 2014

Dipping my Toe in the Water!

The fish series continues and in it I have 3 'American' fish to draw. Here is the first: The Freshwater Wide mouth Bass. 

                                                                Freshwater Wide Mouth Bass   John Simlett

Pen & Ink on 350gsm Cartridge Paper
15 inches x 10 inches
38cms x 25.5 cms

Not a lot to say about it. However when we move to our new home (see previous post) it might be more appropriate as it is in the town of Fishguard in Pembrokeshire, West Wales.

As my father was the outcast of the family I knew nothing of my roots until a few years ago when I did the family research thing. It turns out that my family on both my mother and my father's side go back many 100s' of years ... in Pembrokeshire. The earliest I can find is Philip Simlett marrying Ann Fortune in 1705.

I had never been there until we went for a week last September. We fell in love with it and bought a house down there in the first 24 hours. The coastline is now a National Park, and voted the second best coastline in the world by the National Geographic Magazine. It is off the beaten track and seems decades behind the rest of the UK. The view from the house, straight ahead, is across the sea, and on a clear day you can see Ireland. Looking to the right gives a view of the North Wales mountains.

In preparation for the move we have tried to rationalize our library. We thought we would get rid of some of the books that were overflowing. No chance! Instead we tidied them, double stacking some and putting others on top of the bookcase. Here's a couple of views of one end of the room.


  1. Falling in love and buy a house in just 24 hours!
    The recall of the ancient roots,maybe...
    You and your wife are amazing! Congratulations!
    The trout is beautiful ...
    Good move for you and your books!

  2. I have been there years ago, Fishguard! You and your wife are very brave to decide on a house in 24 hours. I wish you a good move and all the best in your ancestors' footsteps!

  3. Goodness, John! I am so jealous of that library of yours! That is a dream room for me. Hope you are having much interest in your current home so you can make this move happen. The new place sounds so heavenly and so the type of place I also like to live. The fish drawing is exquisite!

  4. oh my're going to take all those books to Wales?? Well, why not--it is your retirement and nothing is better than a wonderful book to spend time with. I love all your fish drawings...thanks for doing an American fish!

  5. p.s. Do you have the book about Churchill and his paintings??

  6. THAT is a most impressive library! I hope you are able to keep it. And I wish you the best of luck in purchasing the house in Pembrokeshire. The photo from a few posts ago shows the town to be enchanting. Good luck, John!!!

  7. Your new home-to-be reads lovely. You library looks as it should, read and cherished. I can't tell you how many clients' homes I've been in where not one book was in sight. Our books express who we are.

  8. The drawing is amazing!
    And I also love being surrounded by books - I only wish I had a place like you do to put them all!!

  9. I hope that you will be able to bring all your books with you when you are moving. Is it far? The fish looks great!

  10. Hi, John. Just thought I would stop by and wish you luck with the move to West Wales - what an adventure! Hope all is going well with you and your lovely family - we miss you here in the Blogosphere!

  11. Wonderful saga, John.

    Don't worry about the books situation. The same thing happened to me.

    Tried to "Thin Them Out". NO CHANCE. Rediscovered books I had never even read. Put them all back on the shelves and there they remain.

    But I love looking at them. Keep reading, drawing and visiting Wales. Life gets better and better.

    Best Wishes.

  12. Your drawing/sketching/graving skills never fail to impress me, John. Lovely Fish !!!

    Saw some splendid gravings on the following Link. Respectfully suggest you have a look (when you've got nothing else to do, like moving house, etc).

    Do let my have your E-Mail (again), when you get a minute, please.

    Best Wishes for the move.

  13. John.

    Further to my last, the Graver/Artist/Drawer of the wonderful images contained in the Link I sent you, just now, is Emilio Freixas, of Spain. Should you not be aware of him, just Google his name. Might be of interest to you.

    Best Wishes.

    1. Whilst I admire Emillio F. I prefer the great detail of the work of the American John Taylor Arms and Axel H Haig (The Scandinavian 'Brit')

      Nevertheless - the video is wonderful - such architecture and artistic skills, thank you for sending it

  14. Wow. I missed a few blog posts. Was surprised to hear you are moving. You just fixed up your studio in England. :)) we moved 13 hours away ten years ago and I left a lot of books behind and I regret it to this day. So hope you can hang on to them.