As I type this, it’s bucketing down with rain. Again. Really I shouldn’t be surprised. It is February after all. And interminable soggy greyness is what February does best. It’s just that the greyness coupled with the sameness of lockdown, to misquote Bertie Wooster, makes “…the bally ballyness of it all… seem so bally bally.” I have no idea what bally means but it does sound like it sums up current circumstances perfectly. Even my Dad confesses to feeling a bit cheesed.


But this it seems is the perfect situation… if you want to fire your creativity. Here’s Mark Manson on reassuringly boring ways to become more creative and Farnam Street on how jootsing (no, me either) is the key to creativity. So really now you have no excuse. And what a relief to be saved from the need to be inspired or, heaven forbid, original for of course all the best artists steal. Though I think it helps if you are in possession of a paradox mindset. Or actually are Picasso.


Talking of art, the Boyfriend has just bought me the most beautiful book Living with Art in Belgium and here it is, my favourite restoration of the moment, and perhaps for every moment. There is even a work by Jan Davidszoon de Heem. Could it be any more perfect? A person can dream.


My current object of desire is the Face Light by Anna Karlin; the first new blue pigment discovered in 200 years is now commercially available and what a blue it is; I have fallen for Teresa Freitas’s fabulous photography; I love that the fish are beautifying our nasty discarded oil rigs; and isn’t it a bit mad that we have to have mandates to have the right to repair stuff?


This home recycling solution from Lasso is definitely on the wish list for the (not so) imaginary house, while this beside table is probably not. Phones in the bedroom are one of my pet hates. I can’t help but think it would be easier and cheaper not to mention healthier, to leave the phone in another room and just buy an alarm clock. Or failing that put the damn thing on airplane mode. This reminds me of the possibly apocryphal story of NASA spending a fortune on developing a pen that would write in zero G, whereas the Russians sent their guys off to space with a pencil…


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The featured photograph is by my good friend Tadej Turk. Not content with an honourable mention in the Monochrome Photography Awards, he has just scooped five more awards, two of which are gold medals, for his photography. Congratulations Tadej! You can see more of his wonderful work here.