Wednesday, 5 February 2014

MOVED

I'm making my sketchbook Tumblr my official blog from now on as it's much easier to post stuff on there (and repost from Instagram and the like).

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

2013 RECAP


These yearly recap things are at best self-indulgent and at worst expose a high level of self-importance.  However, it's been a big help in the past to take stock of what I've achieved and failed to achieve over the last year and set myself some goals - however vague - to set myself up for the year to come.

2013


  • I started the year off really busy with a number of comic commissions, but unfortunately most of them haven't seen the light of day for one reason or another, which is a big shame, mostly because it makes it seem like I've been sitting on my arse all year rather than working like a dog.


  • I did a night course in Creating Comics at Newcastle Arts Centre, which was lots of fun, but sadly under-subscribed.  I teach on an art course as my day job, but it was nice to be able to focus on comics.


  • Early in the year I contributed to NOBROW 8, which was an honour, as Nobrow books are a fantastic publisher with really lovely smelling books.  (Honestly, if you could bottle that scent I would wear it as aftershave)  I was pleased with my strip and it got mentioned in a couple of reviews, so other people seemed to like it too.


  • Out of a multitude of illustration jobs, the most high profile by far last year was doing the poster for legendary British comedy producer John Lloyd's Edinburgh show.  I'm a massive fan of his work, so this was a HUGE honour.  It even got on BBC Breakfast telly when he was plugging the show, which was nice, as I could show my folks.


  • I took part in the massive Bartkira project, which was fun to do (the Simpsons are so much fun to draw), but I was a bit disappointed in the resulting pages and it ended up sucking up a lot of time that could have probably been put to better use.


  • I contributed to the last ever Mustard magazine, which was very sad.  The editor Alex has been very supportive of my work over the last couple of years and supplied me with a lot of fun assignments.  It's due to live on in digital form (for which I've provided some new artwork), but this marked an end of an era.


  • I spent most of the summer preparing for and then teaching comics to kids at a summer school programme up in Northumberland.  This was loads of fun and I'll hopefully be doing it again this summer.


  • I got engaged in August, which has nothing to do with my illustration or comics work, other than it's to the lovely lady who came up with the title for Melanchomic, said all the funny bits from Coupledom, and continues to give me endless support, harsh criticism and brilliant ideas.  The end of my strip in BOO!?  She came up with that.  And that's just the tip of the iceberg.


  • Finally, over the course of the year I co-devised, co-edited and contributed to BOO!, a modest horror anthology for kids.  Paul and I managed to gather a fine group of cartoonists who have helped produce a comic of real quality that I'm very proud to be associated with.  It was a lot of hard work and, while totally worth it, if I'm honest it was too much of a distraction from producing a new comic of my own, or improving my illustration work.

2014


  • I've had a very busy Christmas working on an exciting illustration assignment, but after catching up on the backlog, I'm hoping to take a step back, gather my thoughts and try to figure out what I'm doing.  It's been five years since I started taking all this illustration stuff seriously (and five years since I started this blog) and there's still an awful lot of things I can't stand about my work.  I started actively trying to improve last year and hope to continue this into 2014.  Wish me luck!

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

THOUGHT BUBBLE 2013


I’ll be exhibiting at Thought Bubble on Saturday in New Dock Hall at Table 11, where I’ll have copies of BOO and freshly printed Little Portraits galore.





Please come by and say hello if you are visiting.  Sharing my table will be the delectable Gary Bainbridge, then on the Sunday our table will be occupied by the fantastic Banal Pig.

BOO IS HERE

(cover art by Jonathan Edwards, logo by Paul Harrison-Davies)

After a lot of hard graft, BOO is finally here.  And it looks FANTASTIC.  It's a bit late - we'd intended for it to be launched at the Lakes convention in October so that it would be out in time for Halloween - but various work commitments held it back.  However, kids like to be scared more than just one day of the year, so better late than never!

In this 32-page, full-colour comic we've assembled 7 spooky stories by Warwick Johnson Cadwell, Jonathan Edwards, Paul Harrison-Davies, James Howard, Gary Northfield, Jamie Smart and myself.  Rob Davis sadly had to bow out, but I'm still immensely proud of what we've accomplished.  I just hope that people enjoy it.

It'll be launching at Thought Bubble this Saturday, and I'll have plenty of copies at my table.