for several years now we had been getting together on Monday afternoons for the practice of painting portraits. It started when I was told of this elderly gentleman who wanted to learn to paint portraits, and I soon found was that what he really wanted to paint a surprise portrait of his son, the internationally renowned architect Sir David Chipperfield.
We discovered that we had many things in common in our backgrounds, and Monday afternoons developed into a regular painting session along with cups of tea and coffee and discussions of everything under the sun, and which stopped for very few things... Monday afternoons were for painting!
Alan's house was a heritage house circa 1812, and he operated his antiques and restoration business from there, and as there was nowhere inside suitable for our painting we always worked outside which was not easy but that is the way he wanted it.
He was a remarkable individual, growing up in England in the 1930's, evacuated during the war as a child, becoming a successful businessman before emigrating to Australia and spent the last decades of his life working with antiques. It would take a couple of books to describe him and his possibly eccentric ways and life! successful in business he had retired several times but worked 7 days a week, had made millions but would spend nothing on himself. Fortunately there are a couple of autobiographical books that he did write. One of them is titled “A face in the Crowd' describing his life up until his move to Sydney over 25 years ago.
Here are some photos. my portrait of Alan, Alan working on portraits at the back of his house, some of his antiques and upholstery and what he did it on... never a person to spend money unnecessarily!