Portrait Artist of the Year
We spent more or less the entire period of lockdown trying to find ways to shoot a new series of Portrait Artist of the Year.  Due to tireless efforts of our terrific team at Storyvault Films, we managed it, and we have a great new series on the air. The best news is that Sky Arts is now free to air, and so you don't have to be a Sky subscriber to watch it.  We have the best-ever line-up of sitters, and some of the best artwork we've ever had.  
Portrait Artist of the Week
We also kept ourselves busy during lockdown producing a weekly live "paint in" on Sky Arts and Facebook in which viewers at home were invited to paint a celebrity sitter in real time.  We had entries from all over the world and it was a huge hit.  So we're doing the same thing again during transmission of the current series.   The wonderful Joan Bakewell is hosting, and it's a great chance to improve your painting we hope you'll join us.




Secrets of the Conqueror


An interesting thing happens when you make a documentary or write a book about something that happened in living memory; other people who know something about the subject contact you and tell you the things you got wrong, and other things you didn't know when you did your own research.  It's in part a joy, and in part it's frustrating too.  "Why couldn't I have found you when I was writing the bloody thing?"  Secrets of the Conqueror has been published for three years, and only recently I have heard from several of the key people who were on the submarine at the time I am writing about.   They've been able to fill in gaps and add colour and detail.  Luckily for me, no-one since publication has told me that I got anything of significance wrong - so that's great.  It's just frustrating that, if I'd known then what I know now, the book would be more complete.  Maybe an update for a new edition?  I will give it some thought.


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