My life as a painter can be divided into two separate halves pre-Wales and post-Wales. I first began visiting a cottage in the Brecon Beacons in the 1970s when I was working in journalism in London. In the late 1980s I spent some time there, writing a book on New Zealand and the Maori people, ‘The Fifth Wind’. This was published by Bloomsbury in Britain and by Hodder & Stoughton in New Zealand. It describes my return and re-exploration of New Zealand in 1983 and my travels with the Tainui Maori people on a great Hikoi or political journey the following year. I illustrated the book with linocuts. Living in the cottage, eventually permanently, I also began painting the Welsh landscape and taking an interest in the legends of the surrounding area, and landscape and legends have provided me with much of my subject matter as an artist during the past 25 years.
I was born in Britain in 1935. We lost our family home in a bombing raid in 1942 and after being scattered for the rest of the war came together as a family again in 1946, in New Zealand where my father had gone to work the previous year. I trained as a journalist when I left school in New Zealand, but also began painting in my spare time, and enrolled as an art student at the London Central School when I returned to Britain in 1958.