A tale of two cities

In September 2018 I was invited to accompany boxer Larry Ekundayo to Lagos in Nigeria. This is the story of an incredible 8 days. originally published in Boxing News

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Self-portrait with blood and spots

First painting in three months.

 

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A letter to Karen

Dear Karen,

Beautiful Karen, I only knew you for a short while and that will always remain a regret to me. Yet even though our friendship was measured in years rather than decades the qualities that made you who you are shone forth like a dazzling beacon.

Those eyes. My word, those eyes. Anyone who had to the pleasure and the thrill to look into them could never forget those eyes. And the laughter: even though so often in the last few years you had scant reason to smile, the sound of your laughter is forevermore carved into my memory.

Your kindness and grace. Those qualities poured from your soul to leave an indelible mark on anyone who knew you. Even when your own troubles weighed you down you could never stop giving to other people.

Your intelligence and wit. For as I told you many times, you were an old soul. You had lived before. When we sat together in that hospital waiting room and you spoke about the universe, about how both of us were there for a reason, a greater reason, it would have been easy to scoff at those words. But I believed you. And I still believe you.

I sit here thousands of miles away from you today and I’m trying to hold back the tears. I will not be there for you tomorrow. Unfortunately I cannot be. But rest assured I will be thinking of you: tomorrow and for always. And part of me understands that you will probably be happy that I am not bowing my head in sadness with all of your many friends tomorrow. You would rather that I lived my life. You would rather that everyone lived their lives. As you did.

I will always love you Karen.

Ian xxx

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The Boy From Clones – Barry McGuigan remembered

Occasionally the less modest part of me will post articles here I’ve had published which, I hope, are of a slightly better standard than the usual drivel I put out under my name.

This is my fawning tribute to the fabulous Barry McGuigan, a boxer who always be a part of my long forgotten youth.

This was published in Boxing News a fortnight ago, the first magazine who ever published me when I was in my twenties.

After a 30 year gap I’m back writing for them. If you’d have told me this a couple of years ago I wouldn’t have believed you. And it’s mainly thanks to the mag’s brilliant editor, who has become a personal friend and greatly enriched my life.

Check out Boxing News. It’s essential reading under Matt.

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Latest watercolours

After a slowish start to the year due to daughter problems I’ve been back at the brush a lot lately. My latest efforts, even though nobody out there is remotely interested:

 

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Chasing Kirkland

A thing I wrote for Boxing News about the legendary British boxer Kirkland Laing. Was very honoured when this was reprinted in the Boxing News annual.

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First watercolours of 2018

Nobody’s at all interested but here’s some new watercolours.

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