I am Herbie – Writer, Artist, Bible Student, and Creative Thinker.
I’ve been a writer ever since I read Ray Bradbury’s novel Something Wicked This Way Comes when I was eight or nine years old. At the age of nine or ten years old I received my first rejection when I wrote a story in Junior School, which the teacher said was good but it was too long and I had taken too much time in writing it. I’ve lost count of how many stories were then written in my head.
I began writing again when I went to University to study English and History. By now I was a poet being taught my craft by Dylan Thomas. I may have spent too much time writing it, but it certainly wasn’t too long! I discovered other Welsh and Irish poets, such as R.S. Thomas, Gillian Clarke, Seamus Heaney, and an enduring passion for the poets and writers of the Great War.
I had many attempts at going back to novel writing but after faithfully, according to all the ‘writing’ advice, having written out the story outline I struggled to then actually write it all up into sentences and paragraphs. I discovered that once I had chased the story through to its end, it was finished – the story had been told. I was rescued from this predicament by Jack Reacher’s alter-ego Lee Child who stated that when he began writing he did’t know the end. Now I could finish books!
My art career began at about four years old and finished at about four years old. It was brief, colourful, happy, until I was removed from the easal for playtime. I was crushed and couldn’t make them understand I just wanted to paint. Then schol taught me that good artists produced works which actually looked like the thing in front of them. My detail of a reflective surface was deemed to be wholeheartedly inadequate.
Despite not be a realist when it came to shiny kettles I loved the artistic output of others, particularly anything relating to the Impressionists. Art books, art galleries, and art documentaries, brought me closer to Monet especially, the artists of Wales and Cornwall, and David Hockney.
Hockney’s art work utilising the iPad ultimately gave me the push, during the third UK lockdown, to try my hand at ‘art’ again. After all on a digital platform the terrible results could easily be deleted. Despite my Impressionist upbringing, I quickly walked along abstract and geometrical paths, and my Christian faith also made its mark.
From the first point of becoming a ‘follower of the Way’, searching the scriptures made perfect sense to me. Having had no real introduction to faith for the first twenty years of my life, I had a lot to learn, so naturally I read the Bible and became acquainted with Greek and Hebrew, and methods of study. I trained briefly as a lay preacher in the Methodist faith, before accompanying my wife on her journey as a Reader in the Church of England.
My faith is in my writing and my art. Sometimes very obviously. Sometimes more subtly. Faith and Creativity, to me, are the same. We are inately creative. We express our understanding of the world and everything in it creatively. We communicate our thoughts and our emotions. We constantly reach out to others whether it is in words, images, sounds, or constructs.
This website is part of my reaching out.
Here you will find mostly the words and some of the images, but for a fuller sharing head over to my Instagram feed @HerbieCreative.