Wednesday, 29 January 2020

Drawing for the DCU

Twenty years ago I did some art for the DCU! No, not the DC Universe, but Digital Camera User, a magazine published by Future. 

The editor was Richard Burton, a name many of you will know from his fanzine days on Comic Media News, or his editorship of 2000AD and Sonic the Comic. By the year 2000 he'd left comics for pastures new and with his interest in technology had found himself as editor of Digital Camera User for its launch issue.
Digital cameras were relatively new back then so a magazine like this was a great read to learn more about them and to find out about Photoshop etc. Anyway, Richard was running a fun article entitled 'What Type of Digital Camera User Are You?' and commissioned me to illustrate four various types: The Volume User, The Family Album User, The Enthusiastic User, and The Die-Hard User. 
It made a nice change to draw some one-off cartoons instead of comic strips. I drew them traditionally in pen and ink and scanned them into my Mac to colour. I didn't own a computer until 1999 so these illustrations from 2000 would be some of the first digital colouring I ever did. I'm quite pleased with how they turned out. I prefer using Photoshop for colouring far more than I ever did using a brush. 

I'm guessing that most of you will have never seen these illustrations before so I thought I'd show them here, twenty years later! They appeared in Digital Camera User No.2, dated Aug/Sept 2000.


Sunday, 26 January 2020

Support The 77!

The 77 is a brand new retro-style comics anthology coming in May and there's a Kickstarter page where you can pledge to help fund it here:

Creators involved include newcomers as well as established professionals such as Ian Gibson, Phil Elliot and Steve MacManus! I've come up with a new strip called Sgt.Shouty of the Moon Force which will be a single pager as light relief. 

The project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by March 1st, so don't delay if you're interested! More info on it as it nears completion!

Saturday, 25 January 2020

In the BEANO next week...

Here's a quick preview of what I have coming up in the Beano on Wednesday. There's a How to Draw Plug activity page, and another Pup Parade strip from me, plus loads of strips by others such as Nigel Aucterlounie, Nigel Parkinson. David Sutherland, Steve Beckett, Barrie Appleby and more! 

Here's the cover to look out for, by Laura Howell and the Beano design team. Beano No.4020, in shops on 29th January!


Friday, 24 January 2020

Meet the Artist (1991)

Thanks to John Freeman for this reminder! Back in 1991 the editor of Buster commissioned all the artists to answer a brief questionnaire accompanied with a self-portrait for a new feature to run occasionally in the comic. Here's mine. Half a lifetime ago! I still use that lamp! In the background is a drawing of my pet dog at the time who lived to be 18. 

It was interesting that Buster should run such a feature considering that, up to a few decades earlier, artists of most British comics were forbidden from signing their work. Meet the Artists was a reflection of how times had changed! 

Wednesday, 22 January 2020

Cor!! Buster sneak peek

As other artists are showing glimpses of their art for the Rebellion specials I guess that it's ok if I do the same. This is only a tiny fraction of a large panel though, and larger than printed size, so you'll still have to wait a few months to see the full picture. 

I had great fun working from John Freeman's script to draw the new Buster and Dilbert three pager for The Cor!! Buster Easter Special.  It's out in April from W.H. Smith and comic shops, so pre-order it from your local comic shop so you don't miss out! Let's support these specials and get comics moving again! 

Below: The image shown above but at the pencil stage...

...and at the initial inked stage...

Tuesday, 21 January 2020

More news about stuff I can't show yet

I sent off my three pages for the Cor!! Buster Easter Special today, bang on deadline. I can't show any panels from it yet but I can tell you there are a lot of old characters making cameo appearances in it and it took me a week of long hours and little sleep to draw and colour it. John Freeman puts a lot into his scripts!

Some characters you'll remember, some will be from before your time, but if you know your comics history I hope you'll have fun spotting who's who. If you don't know your comics history it doesn't matter as they're incidental characters and knowledge of their past isn't important to your appreciation of the story, in the most part. 

Anyway, I'm sure it's frustrating and probably a bit pointless for me to talk about a strip without being able to show anything but hopefully those crumbs of background info will suffice until April when the comic comes out. If you want to pre-order it, Rebellion have a special offer for all their specials as a package (sent individually as they come out):

Monday, 20 January 2020

No news is good news

I sent off the first episode of my new Beano strip last night. I can't tell you what it is yet, but it's a Beano character I hadn't drawn before. The half page strip will replace the Pup Parade mini-strip in the Beano that comes out on Wednesday 4th March. 

So there you are. A news item that doesn't give too much away but still gives you a little info! I'll reveal more later next month! Never Be Without A Beano!