Long Buckby doctor swaps stethoscope for paint brush in new exhibition as he reflects wonders of our world

Dr Norman How's exhibition and sale is now on at Long Buckby Library and Hub

By Lucie Green
Friday, 11th March 2022, 4:50 pm

A much-respected doctor from Long Buckby has swapped his stethoscope for paint brushes.

Norman How's exhibition - Travels with A Sketchbook - is now open to visitors at Long Buckby Library and Hub and runs for the whole of this month.

The retired doctor said: "I was a medical student and then a house physician at University College and Hospital London (UCH). From there I worked in hospitals in Barnet, north London and later in Birmingham, where I met Marie.

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Norman How with some of his paintings.

"She was a student midwife. We started in family medicine eventually moving to Long Buckby in 1964, and acquired three boys and a lovely daughter.

"Not much room left for sketching then. But holidays were times when I could draw, often with my children - we have made some good illustrated holiday diaries."

Norman was a GP at The Long Buckby Practice from 1964 to 1995. He started to paint more seriously when he retired in 1995.

He added: "I joined a class Nora O’Keefe was running in the Community Centre, and later classes at the Percival Guildhouse in Rugby.

A selection of his work.

"It was here that I started to branch out from watercolours to oils and pastels; wildlife to landscapes and a few portraits. Marie became an active patch worker and quilter, and we would share ideas about colour and design."

Norman said he gets a 'buzz' from his work and is always trying to better himself.

"Painting is unique in that one has to focus entirely on the subject; in that sense it is like meditation," he added.

"So, one doesn’t worry about the results - although it’s nice when you feel you’ve got it right. I realise that for many painters now it is important that they have a message - convey something, often disturbing and not entirely ‘beautiful’."

Find out more about Norman.

Norman summed up: "All I am trying to do is act as a mirror to reflect the wonders of our world and the glory of God’s creation. That is a message enough."

The artist shows off his work.