Eight days in the Drakensberg on a painting holiday with Ulrich Schwanecke and his team in the 70's changed our lives.    I drove in there with Janny and the kids as an attorney, and on the way out I had made up my mind to actively seek ways to move totally into the world of art.    Painting full-time for that extended week, and being amongst such super and stimulating creative folk had a massive effect on me, and with the ever-present support of Janny we managed to make the change-over fairly painlessly after a few years.    I never knock my previous profession, as it taught me so many lessons that allow me to survive in art - lessons that an art education could never have given me - and I still miss the fine people I worked with.    However our lives were altered forever, and Monday became my favourite day, as the new week's work began.

So the Drakensberg will always be special for us.    I painted there 'on the spot' in super locations, with some of S.A's finest artists, and the wonderful atmosphere of the mountains still lingers.    The next year I was invited to be the facilitator for the oil painters, and a number of years followed where I was co-tutor on these, the Nation's most popular painting holidays.    I was partnered by two giants in South African art - Schwanecke, and after him George Boys.    I gained an amazing wealth of knowledge, both technical and theoretical, from these two gentlemen, and Janny and I also always worked well with their supportive wives, May and Yvonne.    Perhaps the greatest lesson I ever learned from them was their ability to share their knowledge unselfishly.    I well remember the answer Ulrich gave me when I asked him how-come he revealed all his technique to others : ' perhaps if they catch up to me then I will be forced to go forward, wont I ' , was his answer....

Painting in the mountains challenges one on all fronts.    It is vast, atmospheric, technically challenging and very emotional.    As the oils facilitator, I painted few watercolours there, but I would make a conscious effort to do the odd watercolour sketch at least every second day.   This is a quick fleeting moment I did at the lake, as the light faded.

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