Another dynamic pose. Gotta work on those facial expressions though, can’t have him looking like he is squeezing out a painful turd all the time.

time taken: 15mins




My plan for the forseeable future is to draw a sketch every day in order to improve my technique and to hone my style.

The rules are that the sketch should take no longer than ten minutes unless I havent got at least the kine work done. This one took around twelve minutes.

Todays sketch is the alter ego of my character Heroman in some kind of fighting pose.

imageThe process.



So far…


All of the things!

Seems like I have been leaving things a little lax on the update front, and that is because all of the things have happened recently, in the last month or so since I last updated.

Usually I prefer video updates, but there have been too many things to video.

A short list:

Megan arrived from the UK

We prepared to go sailing

We began our sailing adventure!

Preparation for sailing was an amazing task, and had we not had a car would have been impossible. The amount of things that need to be located, purchased and moved from place to place was staggering. We had to beach, scrape and antifoul Esprit between tides. We had to purchase all of the gear we would need, waterproof bags, water containers, cutlery, fridge, spare battery etcetera. We stopped short of buying another solar panel because we have nowhere to fit it permanently. On top of the boat (3000), the dinghy (400) and the engines (1400) we had to get another sail (300) a fridge and battery (1000), water containers (100), anchor, antifoul, waterproof bags, ladder, drill, depth sounder, fishing rods, kitchenware (800) and probably a bunch more stuff we can’t remember right now but use on a daily basis.

So the preparation for sailing concluded with us, at the end of the lease on our accommodation, emptying our room either into Esprit or into storage and moving full time onboard. We are now homeless vagrants. It is much nicer than it sounds!

Our first attempt to get out of Auckland had us tacking into the wind and waves for four hours until we were within reach of the mouth of the harbour when a rogue wave jostled our dinghy free from the deck. As it had been recently repaired I was waiting to reinflate the dinghy, little did I realise that I had also left the valves open, so I was hauling it in and wondering why it was so heavy. Turns out it had begun to fill with water…luckily I got it onboard when I did! This is a rather benign account of what was a rather stressful incident and saw us motoring back to the calm waters on the far side of the Harbour Bridge and going for a swim instead.

Our second attempt the day after was a success however, and since then we have been to Rangitoto and Oneroa Bay, where we are presently stocking up and considering our next options. The swimming is good and the weather is lovely!

Esprit is the little boat just above the tree.



Sailing like a pro

So I worked up the courage to get the main sail out and give it a whirl. There were several things that stopped me doing this beforehand.

Firstly I wanted to get the hang of using the fore sail, tacking, gybing and getting used to the angles and trimming possibilities.

Secondly, when the boat heeled it would frighten me. I knew that the boat wouldn’t just tip over, but that didn’t stop it feeling like WAS going to tip over. I needed some time to get used to it.

Little did I realise until after using the main that all my issues would be solved.

I was having problems sailing to windward, the main sail fixes that making it a breeze to get decent speed when close hauled with minimum fuss. With a genoa alone the helm required was significant and was a bit of a fight.

I was having trouble getting the speed required for tacking in light airs. The main sail gives me that speed, and the jib can just be used for manouverability.

I was haivng trouble getting my hands free from the tiller to adjust the genoa’s sheets because Esprit would just head up into the wind immediately. The mainsail balances the helm wonderfully so I can tinker here and there.

All in all using the main sail is the best idea I had yet and after a bit more research I am confident that I can pilot Esprit safely even in moderate seas. The main is held to the runners in some cases by cable ties, true, and I am sailing with a permanent reef so there is no chance what-so-ever of me banging my head off the boom. This is a compromise I am more than happy with.

I may even replace the cable ties one day.

Here is the video! Under the harbour bridge and back. You can see the heel as I go upwind, and I kindly cut out the long boring tacks so the video is just one long, intense thrill ride. Hang on!



More things

The bottom scrape that I managed was almost two months ago! Means Esprit is long overdue some attention in that department.

There was nothing serious, some small barnacles and whatnot, and I managed to eject the sea squirt that was clogging the toilets intake nozzle…more on that story later…




Yes! Laughter indeed! I traded in my serviceable yet inadequate kayak for an inflatable dinghy and engine!

Nothing huge, 2.4m hull and a 2.3hp motor, but it means I can now travel safely in rough weather and not fall in again, carry gear to and from Esprit, and ferry fishing companions across.

I can also hoon around for no reason at all.

Totally going fishing sometime soon. Should really clear off Esprit’s butt gak before I try and sail again.

Anyway, enough jibberjabber! Here is the video!