Tuesday, 29 December 2009

IF: Pioneer

Raul the Rabbit was a pioneer at juggling whilst riding the unicycle amongst his friends. Happy 2010 everyone and thanks for all the comments this year!

Sunday, 20 December 2009

IF: Undone

I hate it when my shoe laces come undone.

Monday, 7 December 2009

IF: Crunchy

Playing with cute characters...

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Northumberland sketches

A few rough pencil sketches from a break in Northumberland, October 2007.

Saturday, 21 November 2009

IF: Music

A little doodle of Rabbit serenading his loved one on his parsnip trumpet. I thought I'd bring this rabbit back after reading Melanie Matthew's insightful post; 5 things I've learnt so far as a freelancing noob. I've never really stuck with the same character so thought it would be good practice to draw Rabbit in different poses, engaging in different activities. So you might see him again some time soon, just need to think of a name for him.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

IF: Skinny

An entry for this week's Illustration Friday theme 'Skinny'. I'm not sure whether I like the term 'What's the skinny?' or not - it pops up every now and again on the web and seems to be seeping into common speech. Funny how American New Yorker-isms are so potent they can rapidly spread across the Atlantic. Reminds me of Steven Poole's article on the term 'put it to me this way': http://unspeak.net/put-it-to-me-this-way/

Sunday, 25 October 2009

IF: Fast

A quick post for Illustration Friday. Whilst I was doodling I remembered the beginning to Watership Down; one of my favourite pieces of animation. Love the aboriginal style.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Sunday, 20 September 2009

Sunday, 30 August 2009

IF: Magnify

New drawing for Illustration Friday theme, 'Magnify'. These are some of the little germs, bacteria and other little beasties you might see through a super high strength microscope. My girlfriend suggested I should title it 'Petri-fied'.

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Travelling Moleskine

A wild moleskine recently knocked on my door and asked me to draw in it. There's lots more great doodles to see in the Culture Vultures Flickr pool. Check it out at http://www.flickr.com/groups/travelingmoleskine/pool/

Sunday, 23 August 2009

IF: Caution

Tried my hand at a bit of painting this weekend - this is inspired by the view from my bedroom window. A red sunset sky always reminds me of the cautionary saying;

Red sky at night, shepherd's delight
Red sky in the morning, sailors warning

Today also marks the end of my two and half week summer holiday. Back to work tomorrow. I've uploaded a few of my pics from my recent trips to Cornwall and Prague to Flickr. Also discovered I'm pretty good at baking bread!

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

IF: Modify

The first idea I had for this week's theme of 'Modify' was of four-legged fish turning into monkeys and then evolving into humans. I then continued this train of thought into humans evolving into super heroes with special powers. Probably also inspired by the Wolverine cartoon I saw this morning as I'm on holiday!

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

IF: Idle

This is inspired by memories of a night out in Idle a few months ago. Idle's a village on the outskirts on Bradford and some friends who live there took me to a biker pub with a live band. It was also a fun way to idle away a few hours on a Friday night.

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Tribute to Bradford

I've had this image floating around in my head for a few weeks now and I've finally put pencil to paper. As it's often said, nothing is original, and this image is no exception. I think I first thought about drawing the city of Bradford after seeing this painting by Jane Fielder hanging in the Starbucks on Centenary Square. I love it's simple shapes and bold colours, reminiscent of Lowry.

The colours for this illustration come from the yellow limestone and grey concrete that create the city. Architecturally, Bradford is pretty amazing. Everyday I notice some tiny detail I've never seen before in the ornate classical design of many of the buildings. There's a fair bit of brutalist concrete, but even the 'alien spaceship' design of the currently vacant Highpoint building has it's charms.

The best thing about Bradford though has got to be the people. Most people are pretty friendly really, kind of down to earth and self-effacing. There's something about the city of Bradford that cuts through any air of pretension. I miss it when I'm staying in any big, metropolitan city. Plus the curries are the best you'll get in the UK!

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Monday, 6 July 2009

Summer Doodle

Another design using the random doodle technique. Summery colour scheme and characters chosen by the girlfriend.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Culture Vulture doodle

A recent illustration I did for web magazine The Culture Vulture. Don't forget to click the image to view more detail.

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Wimbledon Illustration

A new doodle themed around all things Wimbledon. C'mon Murray!

Sunday, 21 June 2009

IF: Drifting

For this week's theme of 'Drifting' I started out with a doodle and tried not to think about what I was drawing too much... just let my mind and hand drift. It was a really relaxing exercise. Some of the characters I've doodled before in boring meetings and long phone calls but quite a few new ones also popped up that kind of took me by surprise. It's definitely inspired by the chaotic doodles of Jon Burgerman. I've also made the pattern tile so you can use it as a wallpaper background if it takes your fancy.

Sunday, 14 June 2009

Monday, 8 June 2009

Sporty Boy

This little fella's been hanging around in my sketchbook for a while now. Thought it was about time I dug him out and gave him a bit of colour.

St Pancras biro sketch

A rough sketch I did last week whilst waiting for my train at St Pancras station, London.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

IF: Craving

Barry had a craving for cheese and women. So he decided to combine the two.

Moccas pencil sketch

Another sketch I did whilst on holiday last week. We stayed in a fabulous old farmhouse built in the 16th Century, about 20 miles from Hereford near the England/Wales border. The sun shined most of the week and my mobile phone had no signal. Bliss!

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Biro Sketch

A rough biro sketch I did last week on holiday.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

IF: Adapt

The only way the bear would be accepted was if he adapted his outfit.

Monday, 18 May 2009

IF: Contagious

Why is yawning contagious? Some scientists say it is a subconscious message spread amongst a pack of animals to communicate tiredness levels. Other theories suggest it helps cool the brain to try and stay awake. I'm not sure what to think, I'll sleep on it...

Saturday, 25 April 2009

IF: Theatre

New drawing for Illustration Friday theme, 'Theatre'.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

IF: Impossibility

Is it an impossibility that aliens exist? Huh? I dunno! Hopefully they do, it would spice things up a little. What do you think?

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

IF: Fleeting

A new drawing for Illustration Friday's 'Fleeting' theme. Er, I misread the topic as 'Flighty' and have only just realised, oops, oh well, guess this works for 'fleeting' too... as in, King Nigel often made regular but fleeting appearances astride his beloved giant blue chicken.

Sunday, 22 March 2009

From the Attic: American Kid

Went to visit my parents in my home town of Ripley, Derbyshire last week and after doing a bit of hunting in the attic managed to dig out this early comic. Think I must have been around 9 or 10 years old when I did this. It's inspired by American TV programmes like The Wonder Years and Roseanne that I use to watch all the time. Apologies if it offends any US readers! I think it says a lot about how I viewed the town I grew up in.

You may notice that the sixth cell is drawn in a slightly different style. This is because my older brother hijacked the strip and decided to draw it for me - I've even tippex-ed out what I think must be swearing and added cleaner dialogue.

Sunday, 8 March 2009

IF: Intricate

A new drawing for the Illustration Friday theme, 'Intricate'. This is my first proper go at a comic book narrative, possibly inspired by the release of the new Watchmen film I'm looking forward to seeing.

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

IF: Breezy

A new entry for Illustration Friday's theme 'Breezy'.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

IF: Instinct & Tutorial

Hello, here's a new drawing for Illustration Friday's theme, Instinct. It sometimes takes me a few days to think of an idea I'm happy with before I start drawing but this week's theme made me think of this design pretty much instantly. I think it's something to do with all the media attention surrounding the Darwin anniversary recently.

This is the original sketch -

I drew a quick thumbnail sketch in the corner to work out the composition before drawing a larger version. I don't really worry about rubbing lines out as these can always be erased on the computer later. The sketch is then scanned in at 300 dpi and imported into Photoshop.

I crop it to size and then adjust the threshold (image>adjustments>threshold) to strengthen the pencil lines. This is the part where I erase/tweak any lines I'm not happy with.

The layer containing the drawing is then turned to 'Multiply' in the layer options so it becomes transparent. I then add several layers of colour underneath. One thing I've learnt since doing more drawing for Illustration Friday is that when is comes to colour, a limited palette is often better and helps retain a consistency to the image.

I keep the different colours in seperate layers so the hue/contrast/transparency options can be changed easily if needed. The shadows are then filled in and the pencil lines I've used as a guide are erased. I've also added an inner-shadow to help lift the animals off the page.

Finally, a texture of rough paper is added to a layer above the shadows but below the animals and set to 'Multiply'. Overall, this took me around an hour.

Monday, 16 February 2009

IF: Celebrate

This is a poster I've recently designed for a new student production of 'Merrily We Roll Along'. It's a musical that celebrates the history of three close friends and the different paths their lives take.

Sunday, 1 February 2009

IF: Flawed

New piece for Illustration Friday theme 'Flawed'.

Sunday, 18 January 2009

IF: Pale

A quick bit of fan art this week inspired by the Pale Man from the magnificent Pan's Labyrinth. The Pale Man has to be one of the best movie monsters ever created...

The director, Guillermo Del Toro, is one of the most originally imaginative film makers working in Hollywood at the moment. Take a look at his sketchbook here.

Monday, 12 January 2009

IF: Contained

A quick doodle for this week's Illustration Friday topic, 'Contained'. Didn't think I've have time to do one this week but found a little time today - not sure where this idea came from. I was trying to draw a man trapped inside a glass box but couldn't get it right - then this little chap just popped into my head.

Friday, 2 January 2009

IF: Resolve

A new drawing for Illustration Friday theme 'Resolve'. Happy 2009 everyone!