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British Tradition

Oil on Canvas

100cm x 75cm


" I was looking through some old photograph albums of my father’s, when I came across a set of four very small sepia images.  These depicted the ceremony held when crossing the equator on board ship.  As an English colonial family living in Uruguay, it was not unusual for relatives to travel on merchant ships on visits to and from England.  It is likely that these photos were taken in the late 1940s.  They seemed to me to be having great fun, with old style fancy dress and waterworks—similar to fireworks.  When I did further research on equator crossing ceremonies, I learnt about the enigmatic and very curious ceremony known as ‘Neptune’s Court’ and the traditions handed down through the years.  I decided this would be a good subject on which to base my painting.  I sketched a preliminary drawing and as I was about to start painting, I had to stop and do further research on colours as it was hard to tell from the sepia of the photographs.  My ultimate aim was to make the painting look of its time. "

In 2017, the painting was selected to on board the final vessel of the Neptune Project, the 3rd Suezmax to be built by STX in the Goseung yard for the new fleet of BP Ships, whose Lady sponsor is Jayne Bailey.

A book has been created for all the paintings which were commissioned for the project.

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