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There is always a Plan to base the painting on - that's my system. A bit old fashioned. The stained glass artists use it. It is the inspiration for the picture, with all the info. needed. It sets up the colouration and the structure. It's sketchy - enough to go on. It is only small, but takes a while to get right, moving colours about, weakening or strengthening them, altering the lines and shapes, etc. It shows the general look of the finished work and what may lie ahead - easy bits and problems. You iron out all these before you get going. Some plans become paintings in their own right. It may take several attempts. Cwm Belan started as a summer scene, shown here, but in the end we went with a wintry scene. Over the years I have kept hold of most of them and hope to get a book made of a few of them for our daughter, Ray, although there are well over a thousand to choose from.

- things you rarely part with.

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