Tuesday, 27 November 2007

The Castle

I've been thinking today.

"What about man?"

I was thinking about the world, about all it's problems, about the guy who cheated his way into line at the generic coffee shop and I came to a conclusion.

"What was that man?"

Well I thought... screw 'em.

I'm going to build me a castle. It's going to have massively thick wall and a moat full of monsters who breath fire from their nuclear charged anuses.

"Hold on a sec? They breathe from their asses?"

Ok, look it's my castle and my monsters, ok? It's not like I'm Darwin or someink?

"Take a chill pill..."

Now back to my castle. In the Gate house I will have an army of goblins, bred specifically to kill anyone who isn't me. I will, of course, teach them to leave alone my army of servants who will all be trained ninja so I will never hear or see them as they tend to my every wish or command.


Yeah, man, it'd be awesome! You just shout "beer!" and then... Whoooooosh! One would just slide done the table, uncorked by the swish of a katana! Hoovering would just be an occasional swish as dust was destroyed! Food would be scared into being done!

"Hang on, isn't that how Chuck Norris cooks?"

Chuck? Well he'd be my Sherif! He'd be off kicking Kevin Costner's ass. Now for the good stuff...

The Keep would be a giant tower with all your usual Cribs trappings, giant fish tanks, bowling lanes, throne room, damsel-in-distress-window-seats, Lincoln Navigator... and of course the dungeon for people who really hacked me off.

Now, let's get a couple things straight this castle is there to keep all you monkeys out and me in in my own little wonder world! It's a bit "Neverland Ranch" I know, but unlike Michael I've had it hard and so know the value of money. I don't need a Zoo, I have my goblin army to keep me entertained. They come cheep because they eat each other and breed faster than amoeba so they'll pay for themselves. Chuck of course would come at a pretty penny but then I could always just keep him so drugged up on killing Merry Men that he'd never know all that cash wasn't going into his off shore bank account.

Right, I suppose I'd better go apply to Hammersmith and Fulham council and see if they'll let me build it on Shepherds Bush green. I don't want to be too far out of town after all...

Oh and I'll get the pitch ready for Dragon's Den. They are just going to love it!

Monday, 26 November 2007

Business Card

I was typesetting a business card this afternoon.







Oops, Mutha F*...


Look at what I made this poor lady's job title into!

Monday's nearly over!


I don't tend to post my design work here, mainly because this was supposed to be my sketchbook blog but also because the majority of the work I do for my day job totally sucks.

This job started off sucking majorly too. I did this calendar last year (the first year of design hell) and it was... ok. It's for the maintenance section of a large developer of key worker living. It features pictures of workers messing around the office and it's a cute little job but not exactly cutting edge design...

This year however I've been gifted with this photo of the "I.T. team" (love the fact they're called a "team". Could they give the A team a run for their money? You betcha sweet little *ss!). Great photo, great colours, wonderful expressions!

Wish the rest of the photos were as good! Sadly that is not the case as I had nothing to do with taking them. Maybe next year... I won't be here! Wooo hooo!

Nearly home time...

Sunday, 25 November 2007


Reality TV seems much like a zoo to me.

Unusually for me this is a real painting, on board, using pencil, gouache and ink. No digital, no retouching, no nothing.

I haven't done that since collage!

I'd forgotten how great it feels to have dirty, paint stained hands! More like this to come methinks...

Thursday, 22 November 2007


Sadness hits me like a wave. Not a big wave, more like a slow small one that keeps coming with a massive undertow.

I don't know If that's possible. I'm a city boy. I don't get waves. One time, I had to be rescued from a beach in Cornwall for swimming in the wrong part of the sea and I couldn't get back to land. This lifeguard, younger than me, tanned and with surfer hair, pulled me out of the water and took me back to land. I was so scared, confused and embarrassed that I paddled like crazy as we coming into the beach because if I helped him, he wasn't saving me and none of my pride was hurt.

It was hurt, destroyed. I was terrified. I couldn't cope. The waves were way too strong for me.

So, as you may have gathered from this I'm not very good at asking for help. That has lead to the situation I'm in at the moment, at the job that I just can't stand anymore. I don't think it's the sole reason but it's a major one. Pride and front are big factors in this too. I get confused about how to use them to my advantage.

I guess it's because through a lot of my life I've been fine. I've muddled through. I'm confident in conversation, I make friends easily and I'm intelligent enough where it matters for most situations.

I've spent the last 4 years getting knocked. I could do with a pick up.

I need some help. I just don't know what kind.

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

The Door

I'm tired tonight, more on this later. I'll just leave this post as it is.

Saturday, 17 November 2007


So I have a superstition. I fear that one day the ghosts of all the calamari I've ever eaten comes back to get me.

I love sea food, I love meat. I even love "Surf 'n' turf". I don't really get scared that in the afterlife there will be this army of creatures waiting for me to get their own back (what an image!). I am more than happy to get hands on with the meat that I eat and have gutted fish and like in my time.

However, I am aware that our society does use up more of our resources than we probably need to, and when you see pictures of conveyor belts with thousand of animals being shipped around sections of slaughterhouses one cannot help but think... really? Is that necessary?

Unfortunately we can't all live of farms, so... yes. But that doesn't mean we shouldn't have a moment of pause to consider what we eat.

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Coming For You!

I think this guy's pooping his pants!

I love this drawing! I used up a whole ink cartridge on it and it frickin' rocks!

I'm allowed to say that too. It's nice to be totally happy with a drawing once in a while. I even like the mistakes I made in it. I drew this about a week ago (I've had this backlog of drawings to post, I've got three more just waiting!) when I was waiting for the bad news. I guess this could maybe, possibly, have something to do with that.

Monday, 12 November 2007

Hillside of Killer Bunnys

See this? (Well Duh...) ok, but do you see it?

Yup, you got it! It's a hillside of dead people with giant rabbits rampaging!

Ok, so, like, you wanna know why?

Well tough t*tties boys and girls! You ain't getting nuthin' from me!

"Is that because, for all that's holy, you don't know why the monkeys you drew this?"

Ya, pretty much. But look at the BUNNIES!

"You're leaving your money to the rabbit sanctuary aren't you?"

Na, those freeloaders ain't getting nuthin'!

Probably because I'm broke...

"Get your hands out of my wallet!"

Sunday, 11 November 2007

I Had This Plan

I had this plan to paint again. Since I restarted in May I've been working exclusively digitally, apart from my Sketchbook, and I wanted to try to produce something "real" again. Also I was spending ages messing around with brush tools in Photoshop and I just thought "this is completely pointless, why don't I just use a real brush..."

So I go to the box where I keep all my paints and brushes, untouched for a couple years.

It's gone.

I then do what all co-habiting people do when they've lost something. Rather than actually look around for it myself I shout for help.

"Christie, where are my paints?"

"You threw them out in one of your clear out rages. Remember when I asked you if you were sure you didn't want them any more?"


"All gone, honey. All gone."

So I painted the above image. In Photoshop. Damn it....


So, I live in London. It's a big arsed congested stinky city.

In said big arsed city I have to take buses and tubes to get around. The tube is over 150 years old (ish)and looks and feels like it and the buses are the worst form of transport known to man. What is it about buses that attracts the crazies and the mentalists? Oh, yeah, that's right, that's the only way they can get around. But why do the have to sit next to me and twitch and shake and sing and talk to the whole world about how crappy life is. Hang on...

Now we're agreed that this blog is the equivalent of the crazy stinky old man on the bus we can get into the meat of this rant. Judging. One of the advantages of public transport is you get to mix with, observe and sentence thousands of people on face value and their behaviour in the 10 or so minutes that you share the same air in a confined space.

With the current obsession in the media with weight in this country, and given the tiny space allotted to each human on public transport, the fatties of this city tend to attract the worst looks. Yup, don't pretend you haven't raised eyebrows and winced when a 20 stone chunker slams down next to you in the only seat available (well, ok, on the seat and you and your neighbour). The natural reaction, well, to me anyway, is to mentally slap yourself around and say to yourself "look, it's probably glandular or genetics and it's not their fault but hang on isn't that three packets of biscuits and a burger in that bag, what are you going to do, like, die if you don't get enough sugar in you before we get to your stop, don't you know there are people starving in..."

Assumption is the mother of all, well, human interaction and judging people is quite rightly frowned upon but almost impossible to stop in the confines of our own heads. We shouldn't give in to these unfounded rages and always try to challenge them and weigh them up against fact and rationality.

And try not to mutter "if I can't get on this crowded bus because of you, fatty..." too loudly at the bus stop.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Uncertain Under The Sea

Inspiration has been a little lacking this week, motivation similarly hiding nowhere to be found. I had some bad news, work wise, this week and it's taken me a few days to get my mojo back.

So what went wrong? Tell ya what, track me down and buy me a beer. I'll explain everything.

(Click... fizz...)

A corona? How did you know?! Right then...

I tried to run before I could walk. Took the stabilisers off too soon.

This blog (May 2007) marks the start of me trying to "make it" again as an Illustrator. Again. What happened the first time? Well...

I graduated 4 years ago and spent a couple years running around the industry like a headless chicken, pushing my drawings very badly but getting some (and some paying!) work but not enough to live and nothing with any ...profile. I drew some cartoon koi carp once. One was eating celery.

So, I quit Illustration. I kept drawing but stopped pushing my work. I moved into London and got a job as a Graphic Designer and Pre-press Operator which I hate. I concentrated on pouring out my rage into the pages of my sketchbook as I dealt with the long commute.

Then I moved further into town and cut down the commute. I found drawn. I started this blog and it gave me hope. Each post was and still is a victory. My attitude became "Even though I'm broke and my job sucks I achieved today because I posted a drawing".

Then, because I'm me, I started getting over confident. As an Illustrator, the style of my images are still newly borns, clumsy and unfocused collages and confused ink drawings. But I wanted to start getting out there again! So, a couple weeks ago I started sending out some brochures, printed at work for free, to agents and art directors, I entered Images 32 and figured I was a shoe-in.

I started getting the rejections immediately. Last week I found out I didn't make it into Images. Gutted? You betcha...

So I fished around for some inspiration and found this guy. Rory Blyth's writing is raw, crazed and angry in all the best ways. He made me realise that I've been missing a trick. Honesty. I should stop trying to be whatever I think I should be this week and concentrate on image making from me. How I see things, my interpretations. I decide what's finished and unfinished, what an image should and shouldn't be about.

My personal interpretation is all I have to sell and if I don't focus on that I have nothing. My rejections are a blessing.

I will work on me first. The outside world can wait for later.

Stabilisers back on, water wings re-inflated, I pick up my pen. There's work to be done.

Sunday, 4 November 2007

Bad Day At The Office

Funnily enough, I drew this after a bad day at the office. Do you think air traffic controllers have bad days at the office? You know, crashed a couple planes, sent a few flights the long way round, lost a flight to Cape Town...

Saturday, 3 November 2007


I'll try to stay away for my usual bitching about the theme for my comments on this Illustration Friday image (How can can "hats" be a theme?! The're just... things!).

I've been doing a lot of black and white ink drawing lately and that's how this image started before I decided to give it some colour. Although I'm mostly pleased with this image it feels like... I don't know... the first step on the way to something. When I figure out what that is, I'll let you know!

Thursday, 1 November 2007

Junk Food

Ok, I'll come out and admit it. I love the Junk food. I love it in all it's cholesterol busting, horrible bits of animal, mono sodium glutamate crapness.

However, I don't eat it very often. Probably once a week I will have a burger or similar from a major chain or a kebab shop style establishment. See, I know junk food is absolute rubbish and I want to stay healthy. I exercise regularly and try to fit in my 5 a day fruit and veg. How do I start the day? With a smoothie bad boy! That's how I roll!

After my weekly relapse I tend to get junk food eater's remorse. See above image. I hope the big chains don't go bust, as many people do or that junk food doesn't completely disappear. I need my regressions! They make me feel human.