Wednesday, 17 December 2014

The Line It Is Drawn Try-Outs: Week One

The Line It Is Drawn is a weekly column over at the Comic Book Resources website. Every week Followers of the site's Twitter page come up with responses to a comics-related theme, and a group of artists pick a suggestion from this list to illustrate and the final result is posted online each week at CBR.

They are currently looking for new artist's to take part, and as it sounded like a fun exercise, I decided to take part. There will be two weeks of Try-Outs and then five artists will be selected from those that manage to produce an illustration for both weeks.

The topic for Week One was "Cover Homage" and I chose to draw the cover to All Star Superman #1 featuring Streaky The Supercat...



And here is the original cover by Frank Quitely...



All of the artworks are now up online here: http://goodcomics.comicbookresources.com/2014/12/15/the-line-it-is-drawn-2014-artist-try-outs/

Monday, 8 December 2014

Birthdays: Triple Deluxe

On Saturday my friends Anna, Lauren and Jess had a joint party to celebrate their birthdays. Which meant that I had three cards to draw!

I met Lauren through various events at Gosh! Comics and one of her favourite comics is the current run of Hawkeye from Marvel Comics, written by Matt Fraction with art by David Aja and Annie Wu. So I drew a picture of Lauren reading the first volume of Hawkeye...



For my friend Anna, I drew her as a 50ft woman stepping on a lizard. Because reasons...



And last, but not least, for Jess I continued the theme of the card I made for her last year, by re-creating another Hanson album cover, this time "Snowed In"...





Before I met Jess, I didn't realise that Hanson had more than one song, let alone multiple albums, but it seems that now I have consigned myself to drawing her a Hanson-themed birthday card year after year... Sometimes I really shouldn't start something in the first place!

Friday, 5 December 2014

Process #21: Christmas Comics Creating Party

Process is a monthly comics workshop/discussion group, run by Steve Walsh, that takes place on the first Wednesday of every month at Gosh! Comics.

This month's event was a festive comics jam and we spent the evening making comics, eating Jaffa Cakes and Quality Street, drinking beer and being forced to listen to xmas songs.


(photo courtesy of Matt Duncan)

Steve provided a selection of basic materials, including felt-tip pens, stickers and a xmas stamp set. I decided to use some of these stamps to make my comic. There was also a range of inspirational material provided by Jess Milton, Cristian Ortiz, Daniel de Sosa, Matt Boyer, Anna Dowsland, Saul Taylor and Tempo-Lush Richy K. Chandler (Steve had asked me if I could draw something too, but sadly I ran out of time!). I took one of Saul Taylor's blank variant cover designs, complete with Steve's face in the corner box, and used it for the cover to my comic.

And here's what I drawed (partially fuelled by alcohol and e-numbers):









It was a fun night, and there was also a couple of comics jam pages being passed around during the evening, with each person tasked with completing the comic from the previous panel and passing it on. I don't have any photos of those, but if they turn up online, I'll add them here...

The House Of Illustration's Christmas Illustrators' Fair

Earlier this year, I took part in the House Of Illustration's inaugural Illustrators' Fair. And they are currently running a Christmas Illustrators' Fair shop alongside the House of Illustration's shop selling a range of prints, cards and other festive gifts produced by a wide range of contemporary illustrators.



They're currently stocking copies of both my "March Of The Penguins" comic and my latest comic, "Look What I Drawed...", alongside my new xmas card design...



The Illustrators' Fair will be open during the House Of Illustration's usual opening hours: 10am–6pm Tuesday–Sunday (Please note, they're closed on Mondays!). They also currently have two exhibitions on: "Paula Rego/Honoré Daumier: Scandal, Gossip and Other Stories" and "Paddington: Illustrated and Animated". The House Of Illustration is next to Central Saint Martins' building close to Kings Cross station: 2 Granary Square, King's Cross London N1C 4BH

Monday, 24 November 2014

Sketchbook Project 2015: Winter

I've signed up to take part in the 2015 Sketchbook Project. I've taken part in previous years and it's a fun project to be part of. You sign up, pay $25, and get sent a 32 page 105 x 148mm sketchbook which you then have until 31 March 2015 to fill and send back. Once they receive your sketchbook it then goes into a permanent collection at the Brooklyn Art Library where it is viewable by the public, as well as taking part in a touring collection.

There are various themes you can choose from as a starting point for your sketchbook, and this year I decided on the theme "Winter".

And I've just achieved the first major obstacle with any sketchbook: completing my first page! And I'm pretty happy with how it's turned out. I found a quote by William Blake about Winter and drew an image to illustrate it: "In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy."



I used a Sky Blue Pentel colour brush pen to sketch out the image lightly, before inking it with a Zebra fude Brush pen, and then using the Pentel brush pen to colour the sky.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Birthday Card Catch-Up

Here are a couple of birthday cards that I've drawn recently...

Emmy The Great recently teased the announcement of her upcoming EP and UK tour with a photoshoot including this image...

...which I used as my inspiration for this card for her birthday...


Here's a drawing I did for my friend Ayano's birthday recently. I scanned some patterned papers for the background and her shirt...


Here's a card I drew for my friend Sarah's birthday...


And finally (for now!) here's a card I drew for my friend Maria's birthday, based on one of her photos...

Thought Bubble 2014 Round-Up

So I thought I'd write a follow up post to my previous entry about the Thought Bubble Comics Art Festival.

Here's a slightly blurry photo from my phone of my table, all set up and ready to go on Saturday morning...



Fellow comics creator (and my hotel roommate for the weekend) Richy K. Chandler took this photo of me at my table on the second day of the Convention...



And here I am recreating the cover to my new comic Look What I Drawed..., which I was launching at this year's Thought Bubble (photo courtesy of Jess Cave)...



Although I was feeling a bit nervous about my first time with a table exhibiting my work prior to travelling up to Leeds, once I was there I really enjoyed myself. My comics sold quite well, and it was nice to see people's reactions to my work in person. One woman picked up a copy of my Haiku Comics book, read the first strip, laughed and said that it had passed the test and she'd have to buy a copy. There's such a great atmosphere at Thought Bubble and it's definitely my favourite show that I've been to, both as a spectator and now as an exhibitor.

I met a lot of great people over the weekend, some for the first time, and it was really inspiring to see such a wide selection of comics on display. As well as selling my own work, I did get a chance to go around and pick up a few things from other people...


(Clockwise-ish from top-left)
Last Days of Nobodies by Mike Medaglia. The first in a three part series looking at the days leading up to the deaths of three artists who were little known in their time. The first book focuses on Vincent Van Gogh.

The Cauliflower Fields by Enoki - One of the great things about going along to an event like this, is the chance to discover the work of someone you hadn't previously been aware of. Enoki's table was directly opposite from mine, and after looking over at the cover to her comic during the Saturday, I went over to have a look through the pages on the Sunday. And was very glad I did. Intended as the first part of a longer narrative, Enoki's artwork is intricate and detailed, but what really grabbed my attention was her use of page layout and space on the page which paces the story just right, as well as incorporating elements of animation in places as you turn the pages. Definitely somebody to watch out for!

Totoro print by Chibi-Shibby – I love this Risograph print of Totoro AND fifty percent of the sale goes to Cancer Research UK, so it looks good and does good too!

36,000 Feet by John Cei Douglas and Alessandra Genualdo - it was fun to be sharing a table with John and Alessandra for the weekend. This is a comic they created together with a really beautiful story, which Alessandra wrote and John drew.

Safe Place by André Pereira – another new discovery during the weekend was Kingpin Books who publish the work of Portuguese comic artists, like André Pereira. I had a flick through this comic and really liked the style of it, which felt both unique and familiar at the same time. They also had an anthology comic that I meant to go back and buy later, but never got the chance to...

Expecting To Fly by John Allison – I liked the format of this comic series by John Allison which is a two part tale, presented as two single issue comics. The fact that the covers featured videogame references encouraged me to pick them up...

It's A Bird by Matt Duncan - a fun mini comic focusing on the gathered crowds during a superhero fight that rewards repeat reads!

Turtles Fighters by Jack Teagle - pitch perfect Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles parody.

I'm already looking forward to next year's Thought Bubble and also planning to exhibit my work at more comic shows during the year!