The principal of Westminster law firm Piper, Smith & Piper told his son he could follow his dream and try for a career as an artist – on condition that he first qualify as a solicitor. When Piper père died, John Piper abandoned his articles and shaped inter- and post-war British art instead.

For arty lawyers who weren’t similarly liberated, the Law Society Art Group presents a second chance, focused on the group’s annual exhibition in the Law Society Reading Room, which opens tomorrow.

Obiter has had advance sight of some entries, and senses an allegorical trend this year: in at least two works, birds circle the air by a tower.

For joy-on-the wall, though, Obiter draws readers’ attentions to Richard Davidson’s ‘Ice Creams’ (pictured).

This year’s judge, the learning, arts and heritage consultant Gillian Wolfe CBE, once told BBC4 that art ‘has the power to seduce even the coolest lads in a remand home’. Obiter wonders if fellow lawyers will be a tougher crowd.

The exhibition can be viewed from 9-19 January, at 113 Chancery Lane. Membership enquiries to Hazel Bate,