Cheeky monkey

Art, illustration, Life

Here’s a great etching by a renown illustrator of zoological books during the 1920’s and 1930’s, one Leonard Robert Brightwell.  He apparently started drawing animals from the age of 6, clearly understanding his sense of purpose early in life. He went on to draw for the educational comics Look and Learn, if you are old enough to remember them.

Before the days of google and wikipedia naturally, we had to contain our excitement at getting one of these babies. You can even download a sample from the website, or if you really want to wade thigh deep in nostalgia they have been good enough to compile a set of 48 of the best for you to buy! Go here to indulge

I digress, a weakness of mine, to get back to the monkey, there is really no reason whatsoever to post him here, except that I like him . For more of his original prints, here is

Looking at his illlustrations I get the impression he really loved his job. To find a purposeful living must be one of the greatest blessings anyone can have bestowed on them. Until I had children I worked in the printing industry, and worked my way through several positions in the company. It was challenging, pressurised and engaging, but I can’t say it was fulfilling a life purpose in me, and after about a decade I was happy to immerse myself in the business of bringing up a family.  I missed the money of course, and the self esteem that doing a good job brings you, the feedback and the social camaraderie of a team, but there was lots I was happy to turn my back on. The politics of office life, the incessant demands of senior management, and the crass stupidity of the man who was to rise to the dizzy heights of M.D., thankfully after my flight to domesticity. I had had to endure his bullying as a youngster in the business, and for the whole of my time with the company I had an enmity that burned!  All this is completely beside the point, but I am at a stage in my life that purposeful endeavour is proving elusive. Spending time doing something that engages is really a privilege. I am so glad now I could give up work to be with my sons full time, nothing can prepare you for the change to your life, and nothing can prepare you for the time when they grow up and away. It’s just the way it is. I remember during the times when life was a bit monotonous and full of chores that I would tell myself they were my job now, and any job has bits which are boring and tedious.  They weren’t boring or tedious, but spending long days alone with them for long periods of time could try the patience of a saint. And I wasn’t one. But now I need to reshape the days ahead, to find a goal that is achievable within the parameters of a peripatetic lifestyle , two not quite adult sons, a husband and a dog. Thinking caps on!! 



4 thoughts on “Cheeky monkey

  1. Look and Learn – ahh! Memory Lane time for me too, I used to love these books.

    Good luck with your dilemma, I empathise. I’m sure writing a great blog like this must be rewarding for you – it’s certainly a delight to visit.

    PS I love the monkey too!


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