On the 31st of January this year I reported a problem with the manipulation of the fingers in my left hand, this has not gone away, and I have therefore decided to refrain from modelling matters for a while to rest the tendons inside my left arm, where I am told the problem is located. So I will only be working on larger matters in life where minute manipulation of my fingers is not required; hopefully, the rest will provide healing over a period of time. I don't want to get into a situation where using the fingers of my left hand is too difficult or painful simply because I refused to take rest for a period of time; so all projects are on hold until the inner workings of my left arm are healed.
In addition to the above, I have now taken the decision to retire in the near future, the outline plan being to retire in the spring of 2022. The future of this website is uncertain at the moment, and a decision on the website will be made after my retirement.
I plan to complete the delayed projects and then post an image of the completed model, without showing any more interim stages for these particular models, as the delays have already been considerable and I want closure on these outstanding projects.
2020 and 2021 have been difficult years through injury and illness; hopefully 2022 will bring retirement, yes, and the time to create my one-acre wildlife garden on a Welsh mountainside; modelling will continue on a more personal level in future, and my 0 gauge Leeds Model Company (LMC) interest will benefit from having more time to restore a backlog of items held in storage; I will be busy, but retirement means an end to commission work as I enter this final stage of my life, with full access to the time that remaineth for me.
UPDATE January 2022: I am able to report, after what amounts to a year of difficulty with my left arm and hand, that the decision taken to refrain from modelling and rest my left arm/hand as much as possible has paid off; about 80% of reliable use has returned, meaning there is still a 20% caution in having to concentrate and think about what I am doing with my left hand: muscle memory appears to have been lost to some extent, so some things have to be relearnt, and grip and picking things up, and securely holding them, has to be consciously controlled: imagine yourself as a small child learning to use a knife and fork and you will get the idea. Still, this is progress, and I am relieved that I appear to have a physical rather than a neurological complaint; albeit things are still slow here, but at least I can now tear up the cornflakes packets and put the pieces in the recycling bag. Mostly I've been doing simple 1:1 scale stuff around the house and garden, avoiding the need for the sort of concentrated finger manipulation that goes with small-scale model work: I will be getting back to some of this soon I expect. I have spent my working time writing a book, as tapping away with two fingers on a laptop has proved physically possible without undue difficulty or pain; now some 80,000 words later, I am in the closing 20,000 word final chapters and rewrite, which will take me to the end of my final work year in April; then the difficult bit: finding a publisher.