Last year was a year I will never forget it was 2020 and only 3 months ito the new year COVID-19 pandemic was sweeping through mainland Britain putting a heavy burdon on the NHS. The prime minister had put the country into Lockdown. It was whilst watching the BBC news I was filled with emotion.  I was captivated by one awesome individual an elderly man 99 years of age he was walking laps of his garden with a target to walk 100 laps by his 100th birthday  hoping to raise £1,000 for the NHS through a Just Giving page. Day by day he was becoming famous his  name was being mentioned around the world he had become fondly known as 'Captain Tom' He had become our NHS fundraising Hero. The £1,000 target had been surpassed reaching just short of £33 million

On the 8th december 2020 the first ever worldwide coronavirus vaccine was administered

Nurse May Parsons above right explaining to Margaret Keenan how the pfizer vaccine will be administered.

A reference to Margaret Keenan can be found in the drawing, look closely at the chain of face masks being used as Christmas decorations.


My intention was to draw a caricature of Captain Tom and send it to him for his birthday. When I draw caricatures I start with writing down ideas and finding out about the recipients, this information normally has to be prized out of the person commissioning me it's a pet hate of mine having to keep asking for the information via email, messenger, text... it's so annoying and something I do not miss now I no longer take on commissions. With Captain Tom's project I only had to turn  the tv on and I would learn something new about him. I remember thinking this was going to be a busy one. Time was against me though to have it ready for his birthday so I decided to use this time as my lockdown project and send it to him once complete.

After creating my lockdown one project it did not occur to me that there would be another lockdown, after all, the country was sort of getting back to normal or at least the new normal. We were allowed back in pubs but only in  bubbles of 2.  It was mandatory to have a substantial meal. You couldn't just pop in for a pint or gin and tonic.  Shops had stopped their 2 meter distance  one way systems  and you could treat yourself to a much needed  haircut...   But then it was announced on the BBC daily COVID-19 briefing at 5pm by Boris that a further lockdown was imminent, Lockdown 2 would put an end to Christmas 2020

I had no idea what my Lockdown 2 project would be but knew I needed to create something special to top the first one. I would be thinking about this for days on end, then from out of nowhere it dawned on me that I should do something christmas related and not only that  Captain Tom should be the main feature and so I came up with 'Secret Santa'...

Having missed Captain Tom's birthday deadline I was determined not to miss the Christmas deadline but just like with the first project  I was adding to secret santa as and when I learned something new. It seemed on a daily basis something would be named after Captain Tom like the new inter city express train  for the Great Western Railway.  I enjoyed drawing the train I even bought  the limited edition version which came in handy as a prop.

The other favourite of mine was the Beano comic I just at to buy one for my new Captain Tom collection, I would also use it as a prop. My new hobby of collecting Captain Tom bits and pieces was building up nicely.

Did you know captain Tom had a gin named after him? Well what a great addition to my collection. I managed to order early and was able to purchase a bottle from the first ever batch and yes you guessed right I used it as a prop. It now sits proudly in my cabinet... unopened...for now!

After spending time in India during the war Captain Tom spent time in Dorset at the Royal Armoured Corps Bovington with the Armoured Fighting Vehicle  (AFV) School as an instructor on the Churchill tank. His regiment serving in India were equipped with the American tank M3 Lee as seen here.

Captain Tom met The Otterbeck Distillery co-owner Dougie Lampkin whilst filming a TV show about his life. They both shared an interest in the Yorkshire Dales and vintage motorbikes. It was whilst captain Tom was visiting the Distillery that he joked about having his own gin one day and so it was to be. Donations from sales will go to charities set up by the Captain Tom Foundation.


Welcome to

Nurse may parsons holding her Secret Santa print

Nurse May seen here as a toy doll as depicted in the Secret Santa artwork.

Margaret Keenan was the first person in the world to have the first ever coronavirus vaccine administered Tuesday 8th December 2020

Below is the reference to Margaret Keenan. A face mask being used as a Christmas decoration

I have Robert Lenkiewicz to thank for my love drawing. I remember standing in the studio doorway watching Robert draw pencil portraits of those lucky enough to afford the £1 I remember being eager to get back to the childrens home and get my pencils out to emulate the deft pencil strokes I had seen Robert do

I would make many more visits to the studio over the years and become a big fan of his work. Robert always welcomed me to look round the studio on Barbican. I can still smell the painted canvases. I eventually left Plymouth to join the army in 1979 My visits still continued when I had leave, it was so fascinating to see Roberts latest works of art. He was a prolific painter so there was always much to see that I had not seen before.

When I left the army I ended up living in Dorset. It was whilst I was working at the library I was offered accommodation with a  Dorchester family I was living in a granny annex and I loved my time there. The family got to know all about my love for drawing. They were eventually converted to being Lenkiewicz fans.

My Landlady was Norwegian and her family from Norway would come over to England on holiday, it was during one of their stays that their cousin Daniella became a Lenkiewicz fan, she loved my silkscreens that I had on the walls througout the house. I asked Daniella wether she would like to be a muse for Robert, she was gobsmacked that I actually knew Robert and I probably could arrange this. I remember Robert phoning me with the news that he would love to paint Daniella. So Daniella was painted by Robert Lenkiewicz Daniella was over the moon. She was so happy to have met such a great painter. She even got her storey in the Norwegian newspaper.

Typical £1 portrait from the 1970's

Daniella with doll by Robert Lenkiewicz 1998

It was a great moment for me when Robert asked  if I would like to help out with the 'Dossers'  Anual Christmas Dinner, an event that had been going since the 1970's at the Bretonside bus station Plymouth. Robert laid on a Christmas dinner for those less fortunate and offered out blankets and warm clothing. Christmas carols would be playing in the background. It felt like an old friends reunion. I was so glad that I had the chance to help out on this particular Christmas day as Robert sadly passed away in 2002

Robert was presented with a caricature I had done called 'The Dosser's Anual Christmas Dinner' I have drawn one of the 'Dossers (fondly known as) holding a plate of Christmas dinner with just the wishbone and a single pea left of what was a full Christmas dinner. Robert once mentioned to me he liked my humour in my drawings and that I should do more. He said I was an amusing man... I was happy with that.

Secret Santa has been chosen by Wentworth Wooden Jigsaw Puzzles for their Christmas 2021 collection

Prince William in 2007

work on website currently being done so will seem a bit ramdom from here...


Hi and welcome to my website. My name is oby and i love to draw and paint. When i draw I like to focus on caricatures of people and their pets but when i paint I like to work on local landscapes and seascapes.

I have been drawing for over 40 years. my first ever cartoon that I was brave enough to show off was back in 1978 I was working as a storeman for the Royal Automile Club in Plymouth it was my first job after leaving school. There was never enough space in the store so I made a point of this by drawing myself trying to get through the entrance desperately needing to reach the toilet, fortunately for me the office manager saw the funny side, he was happy for it to stay up on the wall in the staff room.

Although my Website is currently under construction it would be great to hear from you

Creating safe and happy art for today and our tomorrow's

' Dosser's annual Christmas dinner' 2001

Robert Lenkiewicz receiving his caricature christmas day 2001

Learn more about  Robert Lenkiewicz

No matter what I have done in life no matter where I have been my love for drawing and seeing other peoples art has always been close by I find it fascinating that we can all draw and paint the levels at which we do is determined by the critics. When I visit art galleries and art events  I always go alone, I can spend long moments studying a painting It's best not to be rushed. I have been with friends and family and there is always someone eager to get away after so long. I must have bored the hind legs off a donkey over the years as it will pop up in conversation at some point. It was whilst in conversation with a gunnery instructor sat at the bar in the Sergeants Mess at the Royal Armoured Corps Bovington that I was asked if I would consider being commissioned to draw Prince Harry and all the officers on the pending course. Prince Harry was due to arrive to start his Troop leaders Formation RECCE Course in the summer of 2006. I jumped at the chance and took the commission on It was because I had drawn Prince harry's group and it went down well I was invited to draw Prince William's group in 2007 on both ocassions I was invited to meet both royals and I had free access to taking photos. I got to know both royals during their 3 month course and I must say they were great guys easy to talk to. Both had a good sense of humour...and both Royals got to meet my pet dog Jake, which was nice

(C) Howard M O'Brien

(C) Howard M O'Brien

When I was taking this pic my Jake was patiently waiting to have the ball thrown

Price Harry to my left. This was right at the end of the course it was presented during live firing at Lulworth rages 2006

prince Harry is the one holding the 30 MPH sign. Apparantly he got cought speeding driving through Bovinton

Prince William recieving his group drawing on a wet day Lulworth ranges 2007

This photo almost never happened, we were all waiting for prince William to arrive think he had a lot on his mind at this time