Monday, 28 October 2013

that's a big iguana...

I am progressing apace with my Mr Punch comic... this is making me think I could possibly get some of my other dormant projects on the go again.  Here is a sequence from the one I began to make after I got back from the Galapagos:

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Memory Palace - complete!

Memory Palace has finished, can you believe it? If you didn't get to go it is too late now!  BUT you can see all the pictures I made for it in one go thanks to the miracle of blogger...

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

battle beasts return

Got sent a really nice photo of the Giant Battle Beast I made with children at Burley Woodhead Primary School... Too good ^-^!

Daumier show at the RA

I drew these two from a collection of ceramic heads in a show of works by the French artist, HonorĂ© Daumier.  I make no secret of the fact that he has been a huge influence on me so it was very exciting to see these first hand.  Go along if you are in London any time soon... It is fab!

Sunday, 20 October 2013

having a riot

I decided that I would do a complete dummy for the Mr Punch comic I have been making up.  For the last couple of weeks I have been working hard on the roughs.  I've gotten about half way through so far. 
Usually I would be finding such a big project very hard work but for some reason I am really enjoying it.  Punch in this story is such a nice character to write for.  He makes me laugh out loud sometimes.  That has to be a good sign!  Here is a (hopefully spoiler free) selection of some of the panels that have gone by...

Friday, 18 October 2013

where do stories come from?

I have just been in Ilkley as part of the Children's Bookshow, which is an annual programme of author and illustrator events in schools and theatres around the country.

Each time I am involved I make a new introduction to go with the stories I will be telling that year.  In previous years I have done a montage of my drawings from age three up to the present day and a picture story about a trip I made to America when I was two (the image on the banner above comes from that)...

This year I talked about the moment, about a year into working full time as a story maker, when I realised that all my ideas had dried up.

Here is an abridged version of it:

...What I came to understand was that creativity is a reflex, a response to something outside of ourselves and not an internal process at all.  I wasn't having any more ideas because my life now centered entirely around filling up blank pieces of paper.  Each day I would be confronted with a new blank page. It was gradually sucking all the stuff out of my brain until there was practically nothing left!

So instead of starting with nothing I tried starting with something.  I started with a dot.

Lo and behold, I started thinking of things.  Not terribly exciting things, I'll admit, but things nonetheless.

Now I had some material.  I tried putting them together... out came pictures that told stories!

Now I started looking around to find something else I could test my new powers on.  I discovered that you never have to look very far.  In this case I looked no further than my ass.  There were stories there too!

Now I do this kind of thing all the time.  It is too much fun not to.  For this introduction I set myself the challenge of telling a whole story with just one shape.  Here's what came out.  Click on it to see it big enough to read!

Sunday, 13 October 2013

funky carrot

Here is a comic that I did for Nobrow's The Double collection... It's about a man who gets replaced by a funkily shaped carrot.  Something we can all relate to, I'm sure.  Click on it! Read it! It has no words!

Friday, 11 October 2013


There are some jobs we will never get... doesn't stop us from wanting them though.  The good news is you can do them anyway!  You won't get paid; they won't get published... but they'll sure be fun to draw!  I found these two in an old sketchbook and thought they were rather good.  I like my Shelob much better than the movie version ^-^

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Bottle of Sunshine

Here are some illustrations I did for an American group, Milkshake, who make songs for children.  These are all for their album, Bottle of Sunshine.   They were made about nine years ago, I think.  They were a lot of fun to do at the time.  I got quite attached to the characters...