Wednesday, 26 December 2007


Well it's Boxing Day morning - Sharon bought me a fantastic A2 Lightbox for Xmas, and I have just solved a comics-colouring mystery that has annoyed me for YEARS!!!

How do they colour the actual line-art in different colours? Like when that GENIUS Dave Stewart makes Guy Davis' characters stand out from the background so well in BPRD comics... well I finally sussed it this morning - see attached image. The foreground characters have solid black line-art, whereas the background line-art is brown, giving a nice depth-of-field appearance. This may not sound like a big deal, but it bloody is to me!!!! Now I can colour fire with nice orange lines, etc...

In other news, I've had to work during this Xmas week, as I received a new script from Manitowoc (a crane manufacturer) so I've managed to almost finish the drawing side of things - next up is colouring and adding all the company logos. I've also just finished three more illustrations for Easy Jet, as well as a Xmas commission for one of my guitar students.

I'm due to start work on an exciting project which will be pitched to Image, etc sometime in the new year - stay tuned for that!! I should be starting character designs as soon as I finish the Manitowoc job in the next couple of days.

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Inks and Colours...

Now I have a little "me" time for drawing, I decided to practice my new inking skills a little more - I'm really getting into the brush and dip-pen approach.

I had this single page pencilled, from a story written by someone who's name I completely forget now... anyway, it was begging to be inked so I went ahead. I was really happy with it, so thought I'd colour it as well, in my new "blocky" style - that is, solid colours for the most part, rather than airbrushing absolutley everything!!! I feel this style has more impact, but is easier on the eye for storytelling - not to mention being quicker than all that airbrushing.

So here's the first panel - I'll post the rest when it's done.

In other news, I have a new commission to do the artwork for two superhero t-shirt designs, which I'll post if I get permission (when I've done them!).

Monday, 3 December 2007

Spending time with Nigella...

Well I've actually had to WORK hard this past week... tight deadlines on the Revolution Vodka illustrations - 3 covers and 13 cartoons, all in colour - and I've never had to do so many caracatures before! Added to my repertoire this week were Amy Winehouse, Pete Doherty, Lily Allen, Gordon Brown, David Cameron, Nigella Lawson, Gordon Ramsay, Paul McCartney & Heather Mills, Jamie Oliver, Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond, Sharon Osbourne, Dani Minogue, Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan, Victoria Beckham, Kate Moss - the list goes on! I have big respect for caracature artists, some people just ain't easy to draw... particularly tough was the new Bond, Daniel Craig - I just couldn't get that guy right - got there in the end though (I hope). I'll post some of this work here when it goes to publication (this is all for the new menu for Revolution bars around the UK).

I've inked all of the cartoons with a brush and dip-pens, and it's gone surprisingly well. I will definitely be doing this from now on, it adds a lot of life to the artwork - not as accurate as a pen, but adds "character" - I just wish it was quicker! I've been looking at Joe Kubert's stuff, and I just love what that guy can do with a brush, he makes it look so easy. I should be starting some new comic pages soon in some form or other, and also practicing my inking. Stay tuned!

In the meantime, here is another character I drew for the ICO website (before I started experimenting with brushes, etc):

Sunday, 25 November 2007

The Word of Tharg!

Well, word has come down from the Mighty One - he is impressed with my story-telling, but I need some work on my figures here and there - and possibly some heavier inks would help too. This is all do-able!

Luckily I also have the advice of two of Tharg's top Art Droids, who have already given me exactly what I need to forge ahead in my holy quest to become an Art Droid myself... the journey continues! I've posted my latest 4 pages above for you to see (you know, you... the 3 or 4 people who read this blog!).

My next comic work will be a strip for the small press mag Future Quake - this is a 4-pager written by Martin Hayes, and it's funny and totally crazy, just what I need. But before I can start work on that, another juicy job has landed in my lap - this time a whole bunch of cartoons for a company that makes flavoured Vodka! Ahhh, if I still drank, I'd be angling for some free samples...

In other news, I have finally begun work on re-designing my site, - it's looking good so far. Not that there's much wrong with my exisitng site, but it's been a while and it could use a facelift.

And on that bombshell...

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Comedy Photo ref!

Ahh the joys of drawin' comix!

Digital cameras are the way forward - why trawl through endless web pages looking for photo ref on the net when you can persuade your girlfriend to take photos of yourself acting like a complete idiot?! I'm well and truly back on Dredd now - all my deadlines have been CRUSHED and I can finally finish a few pages of this sample script (only one and a half panels to go).

(Did the script ask for nose-picking? No it didn't, but damn it all to hell I did it anyway).

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Feeling ill, ill, ill...

Yes, feeling like utter crap this week - caught the dreaded bug going around: headaches, sore throat, you name it. BUT! The show must go on... still hammering away at the work-load, and I've finished 3 of my 4 jobs - just 2 illustrations left for the final one then I can collapse. Except I can't! Got to plow on with the Dredd script as soon as I can.

Here is a look at one of the characters I've been designing for a government website - copyright (c) ICO 2007:

Monday, 5 November 2007

I am SO in demand...

Yes, MORE work is flooding in - it seems I can't start one job without another one landing in my lap... I am definitely happy about this! The Judge Dredd script has gone on hold (agaaaain....) while I work to meet these deadlines.

I have 4 characters to design for a website, (deadline for final art is this Thursday) with another possible 4 comic strips featuring those characters (short 4 panel newspaper types). So far it's going well, and I'll post some here if I get permission. I've also been working on storyboards for another animated advertisment for Easy Jet, and there's a possible private commission of 3 illustrations in the near future, too.

As soon as I get back in the comic artist saddle, I'll post some more panels... stay tuned!!

Thursday, 1 November 2007


Yes, typical - I get stuck into the Dredd script, and a load of other work comes pouring in! I'm not complaining mind you - it's paid work, and right now that takes priority. I've just finished the latest comic strip for Manitowoc (a company that manufactures cranes) and some character designs for KinoDV.

While I'm waiting to hear back about the designs, I'm getting stuck into page 3 of the Dredd script, which is looking good, and is a TONNE of fun to draw!!! I really think this would be my dream job, so I'm going for it with everything I've got (and learning a lot along the way).

Monday, 22 October 2007


Working on the Judge Dredd sample script at the moment... things are going well so far. Not much else to report - I'm chained to the drawing board... occasionally I venture outside and squint up at the sun, then quickly scurry back to my dungeon with my pencils and pens. It's the only way to live.

Monday, 15 October 2007

More Brum!

Here's a look at a couple of my finished pages:


Back from the Birmingham Comics Show - and great fun it was too. It's been over 10 years since I went to one of these things, and it was great to see some familiar faces, and meet many new ones.

Matt Smith from 2000AD seemed to like my work, and is going to send me a sample script to work from, so that's going to be priority number 1 when I get it! I managed to show my portfolio to lots of artists, to get their opinions and valuable advice... PJ Holden was, as ever, a wealth of knowledge! That guy really knows his stuff and was happy to spend time with Sharon and myself, pointing out ways to improve my work.

The Rebellion 2000AD stand:

Here's me with PJ - look how pleased he is to see me!

PJ drawing a sketch of Mean Machine for a fan:

Mike Mignola was great, and made my day when he looked at my portfolio and said he would assume I was already working in comics - that put a big grin on my face. I've been a huge fan of his stuff for many years - his artwork and now his writing.

Meeting Mike Mignola:

Mike again, sketching on Sunday morning:

Another highlight for me was meeting the legend Mick McMahon - I was a major fan of his Dredd stuff back in the 70's and 80's, so to have his advice was fantastic.

Mick Mcmahon, who is obviously thrilled to meet me:

I have to give a special mention also to Rufus Dayglo, who sat down with me and gave a great crit of my work - he has real passion and enthusiasm for comic art and was a pleasure to talk to, as well as writer/editor Tony Lee, who said I should get myself down to the Bristol con next year. Duncan Fegredo was also a star! He was happy to chat for ages, giving me great advice and showing us his portfolio of Hellboy: Darkness Calls pages, which were friggin' fantastic.

Monday, 8 October 2007


Making a few changes to my Dredd pages today, and redrawing a few panels, on the advice of all-round top geezer PJ Holden. I'm also learning a lot more about tweaking and cleaning up my artwork in Photoshop - PJ sometimes recommends I flip a panel here and there, to help with the storytelling... and of course, he's always right.

Tuesday, 25 September 2007


The carnage continues!
Work is going pretty well - the Birmingham con is less than 3 weeks away, so I'm hoping to find time to do a few more pages before then...

Thursday, 20 September 2007


What's more fun to draw than Old Stoney Face punching a perp in the mouth? Not a lot, that's what!

Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Back to the Drawing Board

Well, I'm back from sunny Corfu (except it wasn't... it bloody rained twice!) and I'm back at the drawing board... did a sketch for the Easy Jet people this morning, and I'm working on a few more Dredd pages in preparation for the Birmingham Comic Show, which is just under a month away... so I'll post a couple more pages when they're done.

Tuesday, 28 August 2007


Well here's a look at the latest page, in pencils and then inks. I'm redrawing 4 pages or so of a strip originally crafted by the great Cam Kennedy:

Sunday, 26 August 2007


Well, this has NOTHING to do with comics, but it is VERY cool... if you've never heard of the UFC, this will mean absolutely nothing to you:

I went shopping this morning with my girlfriend in the Trafford Centre, Manchester. I was in HMV looking at DVDs, and I saw this guy who was the spitting image of Rampage Jackson (who is very famous in the USA - he's the UFC Light-Heavyweight Champion of the world!) standing in line to buy something! I was thinking, there's no way that's him... then I turned round, and Michael Bisping (British UFC fighter) is stood next to me! He said "haha, bet you thought there was no way that could be him!" I was amazed, both these guys out shopping and I bumped into them. They were both really cool, very funny, and their friend took a couple of pics on my phone for me. They're both fighting at UFC 75 next week, at Wembley Arena.

So anyway, here's a couple of pics of me looking like a dork next to two of the UFC's top fighters!

Hot Comic Action!

Whelp, my blog starts here...

I'm going to chronical my efforts to become a Pro comic artist in this blog! The road will be long, hard and filled with thrills and spills... and long boring hours sat at the drawing board. My first target is going to be 2000 AD - the galaxy's greatest comic. I've been a major Judge Dredd fan since I was a nipper, and to draw Old Stoney face would be a dream come true, so I've begun work on my Dredd sample pages.

First attempt will be to show the 2000AD editor Matt Smith my work at the 2007 Birmingham Comic Show (Oct 13th I think it is), so I'm working on a (hopefully strong) portfolio for this event. My trusty sidekick, the beautiful Sharon will be accompanying me on this epic quest... this will be her first comic con, so I'm going to have to prepare her for the multitude of fanboys who will gawp at her, excited by the prospect of an actual real girl in their midst. Should be fun!

So here are a couple of pages from my portfolio... I may colour a few as well, if I have time - but I'm mainly looking at b/w stuff for now: