About Myself - Memory Corner Studio

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About Myself

I was born in the Jewellery Quarter of Birmingham in 1936. Have always liked drawing and painting and can remember my father giving me a few pointed drawing lessons at an early age.Unfortunately  Dad died when I was only ten years old.

In the area where I was raised, it was the custom to teach children a trade of the area, Tool making, silverware, jewellery making, etc. etc. I was taught to be a silversmith two days a week, away from my normal schooling, at Vittoria Street School of art, which is in the centre of the Jewellery Quarter. (Now part of Birmingham University Arts)

On leaving school I joined a firm of engravers and learned to operate machine engraving and die sinking equipment. During the evenings I went back to Vittoria Street to learn hand engraving.

At the age of nineteen I decided to change my career. Engineering was my choice and became employed as an Instrument Mechanic for a firm known as "Powers Samas Accounting Machines". These were purely mechanical adding machines. In 1959 a merger with "British Tabulating Machines "formed the new firm of  ICT "International Computers and Tabulators" I worked on the electro-mechanical and computing machines. ICT became ICL; Tabulators had become obsolete with the rise of computers. I was fortunate to be around at the time and grow up in the early computer age. My career with the firm lasted 34 years, but I was always drawing my fellow engineers and operators using blank punch cards as paper, which were in abundance. Finally the throwaway technology and reliability of computers caused my eventual redundancy.

Two years prior to becoming redundant, I had an accident while taking part in a Laurel and Hardy skit. A smashed right ankle and broken leg kept me house bound. Naturally I took to my drawing skills to pass the time away. Being a local history buff, began sketching from old photo's in my possession, little did I realise that they would be saleable until a neighbour asked if she could purchase one of the pen and ink sketches. When redundancy occurred, a home made career opened up. I opened a small picture-framing gallery. As most of my work depicted the past, it seemed logical to call it "Memory Corner Studioā€¯. The gallery was open for eleven years, until I retired during 2002 and the gallery closed.
I continue to work from home. Watercolours are my passion but still continue to use Pen & Ink and Pencil for sketching. During the 90's I had five books published, three contained sketches of my home town of Hales Owen, the other two were Sketches of Bimingham and Sketches of Bromsgrove. Also illustrated in pen and Ink some of Julian Hunt's book "A History of Hales Owen and the front covers of Julians other books, Gerrards Cross a History and History of Coleshill  which were in watercolour.
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