Saturday 30 November 2019

It's a plan!

Something different I did recently. A strip I was commissioned to do for The Planner, a magazine published by the Royal Town Planning Institute for those involved in Town and Country planning. Not available in shops so I thought I'd post some images here to show you. The brief was to show a "Play Street", which is a scheme where busy streets are cordoned off for a few hours for kids to safely play in.


Thursday 28 November 2019

OINK! in Germany!

Thanks to Brendan Quinn on Peter Gray's UK Comics group for finding this curiosity. I'd heard way back when that there was a German language edition of OINK! comic in the late 1980s but had never seen one. My 'Tom Thug' and 'Pete and his Pimple' strips (amongst strips by others) translated into German! Naturally, IPC never paid us for these foreign editions...


Sunday 24 November 2019

Pathetic Sharks VIZ art for sale!

I'm selling a piece of my original artwork on eBay this week. It's a large 460mm square illustration of The Pathetic Sharks that I did for the 1992 Viz Calendar. Drawn on Bristol board with black ink, water colours, and Carab D'Ache colour pencils. 

The auction has just started and runs until Sunday 1st December. Good luck if you're bidding! More info and photos at this link:

Saturday 23 November 2019

It's Doctor Who Day!

November 23rd is apparently Doctor Who Day as the series began on this date in 1963. I'm not sure if I watched the first few episodes but I was definitely there to see the first appearance of the Daleks in December of that year. 

The photo above is an old one, from the Brighton Comic Con in 2005, but I thought I'd dust it off for the occasion. This was the first time I'd seen a Dalek actually moving around and speaking at a convention (thanks to remotes and someone peddling like mad inside) but these days it's commonplace and the Daleks can be controlled without any occupant. (See photo below, which I took at Nor-Con 8 weeks ago.)
I sent off my Christmas episode of The Daft Dimension to Doctor Who Magazine the other day, and you can see it in print in issue 456, on sale in a few weeks! 

Friday 22 November 2019

'Enry in the spotlight

Here's a sneak peek at a little bit of my Pup Parade strip for next week's Beano. This time it's about 'Enry, the bespectacled one of the Bash Street Dogs.

See the full comic strip in Beano No.4013, on sale Wednesday 27th November. 

Tuesday 19 November 2019

Tom Thug - in colour for the first time (1986)

It seems hard to believe now but there was a time when most pages in British comics were printed in black and white. Colour printing was an expensive luxury, usually restricted to the covers and (if you were lucky) a few interior pages. Things started to change significantly in the 1980s, presumably as colour printing became more economical to use. Even then, although my first mainstream work appeared in 1983 it would be three years before I did a full colour strip for a comic.

Here's my first published full colour page. A Tom Thug strip that appeared on the back cover of Oink! No.8 (cover dated 9th to 22nd August 1986). It was a bit of an honour to be given the back page of a comic so I was very pleased with that. 

I'd done a bit of colour work before when I was working as Mike Higgs' assistant on his Learn with Moonbird books in 1983/84 but they were single illustrations for children's books. This was the first time I'd been let loose on a comic strip in colour. 

After inking the linework with a Rapidograph I coloured it with Dr.Martins watercolour inks and Faber-Castel pencils. Looking at it now, the colouring is quite crude in places but it suited the rawness that Oink! was about. I'd improve as time went on, but I wish Photoshop had been around back then because I prefer colouring digitally far more than with a brush. (And I think my digital colouring is far better than my hand colouring ever was.) 

I did all my own lettering too. Each balloon had to be done on patch paper (sticky back paper), cut out to the required shape, and stuck onto a clear acetate overlay. 

Anyway, so there you have it. My first full colour comic strip. Yep, the story has some crude elements too, but again that was part of the remit for Oink! Incidentally, Tom's last line was changed by the editor. My original version had him saying "bog" instead of "sink". Yes, even Oink! had its limits. 

Monday 18 November 2019

Bash Street in the Beano

I had the opportunity to draw The Bash Street Kids recently for a joke page and you can see it in this week's Beano No.4012, on sale Wednesday 20th November.

I also put some of the Kids in this week's Pup Parade too for the same issue...

It's always a pleasure to draw such iconic characters that I enjoyed so much when I was a child. 

Beano No.4012, price £2.75, will be available from WH Smith, supermarkets, and all good newsagents or you can subscribe at this link and save money!

Friday 15 November 2019

Meet The Liver Birds!

Here's something new I'm working on. Meet Askey and Dodd, The Liver Birds! It's a brand new full page strip, created and written by Tim Quinn and drawn by me for a new comic magazine that's coming soon! The magazine was announced at Liverpool Town Hall the other week, with Tim Quinn giving a presentation of some of the contents. Thanks to Alan Cowsill for the photo above.

Here's how Tim announced the strip on his Facebook page:

"THE LIVER BIRD has been a symbol of Liverpool for over 800 years but little has been known about the private life of this extraordinary creature ….. until now!

Askey & Dodd, the two beloved Liver Birds who stand proud with watchful eyes high above our beloved city, will feature in each issue of the brand new LIVERPOOL HEARTBEAT MAGAZINE hatching in January 2020. The work of comic book legend Lew Stringer (Bash Street Pups, Brickman, Keyhole Kate, Combat Colin, Doctor Who’s Daft Dimension, etc), the Liver Birds strip will be a bird’s eye view of Merseyside’s most famous characters.

The magazine will also feature the imaginative work of school children of all ages from across the region alongside pages created by some of the greats from the comic book world. Editor Tim Quinn says, “I’ve met so many talented young people in Merseyside that it is great to be able to create a brand new magazine to showcase their ideas.” Keep an eye on the Liverpool Heartbeat sites for launch date! "

More news soon!

Thursday 14 November 2019

Behold my Six Pack!

Now you can order all six of my comics in one parcel and save money! That's Combat Colin issues 1 to 4, Derek the Troll, and Pedantic Stan. Six comics, 200 pages in total! 

Combat Colin reprints the strips that appeared in Action Force and Transformers in the late 1980s'early 1990s. Most pages have been scanned from my original art. 

Derek the Troll reprints the strips that appeared in Warlock and White Dwarf magazines in the late 1980s. PLUS the second half of the comic reprints the complete Rock Solid, Space Hero series that appeared in Swiftsure comic in the mid-1980s. 

Pedantic Stan, the Comic Fan reprints the 1990s strip that appeared in Speakeasy fanzine. It was created by John Freeman and myself.

Six comics in one parcel. Shop early for Christmas! Here's the link if you're interested:

Please note: The prices on my website are for UK customers only. If you live outside the UK, contact me at for postage rates. 

Tuesday 12 November 2019

In this week's BEANO...

Characters Copyright ©D.C. Thomson & Co. Ltd.
Here's a sneak preview of my next Pup Parade strip. This week, Manfrid is in the spotlight! See the full story in Beano No.4011, on sale Wednesday 13th November, £2.75. 

Monday 11 November 2019

Coming in the next DAFT DIMENSION...

It's Daleks like you've never seen them before, - playing football! Here's a preview of my next Daft Dimension comic strip, and you can see the full version in the official Doctor Who Magazine No.545, on sale this Thursday (14th November). 

Sunday 10 November 2019

Lest we forget

Quick finger painting done digitally on my iPad with the Procreate app. 

Saturday 9 November 2019

Pencil rough for something new

Here's a glimpse of something I'm drawing this weekend. This is just the rough pencil stage, and it's only part of a panel. I won't be able to reveal what it is, or show you any finished art for a while, but it's a one-off for a non-comics company. It's always good when a magazine that doesn't usually run comics uses the strip format to illustrate its articles.

I'll tell you more about it when it's published (next month I think). 

Monday 4 November 2019

Christmas merchandise!

I've added a bunch of brand new merchandise to my Redbubble store, designed as potential Christmas presents. Socks! Coasters! Stickers! - and more! 
Take a look by clicking this link:

All items are manufactured to order by Redbubble and they ship them to buyers. I then receive a percentage, when sales reach a certain amount. So if you're interested, please support my shop. Thank you. 

Combat Colin Socks! How can you resist? 

Friday 1 November 2019

Bones in the spotlight

With Pup Parade only being a mini-strip of 3 or 4 panels, there's not room to give every one of the Bash Street Dogs equal time, so instead I tend to focus on one or two different characters each week. In next week's Beano the spotlight falls on Bones, the leader of the pups. 

See what happens next in the Beano No.4010, on sale Wednesday 6th November!