Monday, 4 June 2018

Book Wyrm

Another birthday card! This one was for a friend who likes dragons and books. With any luck she also likes puns, since I can't seem to resist writing them on the card when I think of them.

Monday, 28 May 2018

White Horses

Is there still time for one more Mermay picture? This one is another birthday card, for a friend who loves the sea (despite not being able to swim). I really enjoy drawing the 'white horses' on waves.

Monday, 21 May 2018


A beached mermaid, since it's Mermay.

Should she call attention to herself in the hope that humans will help her back to the sea, or stay quiet for fear they'll put her in a specimen case? With the tide going out, she doesn't have much time to decide.

Monday, 14 May 2018

A Garden Party

This was my little sister's birthday card this year. I almost always draw her a Spring flower fairy, since Spring flowers are one of her favourite things, but this year I was inspired by some strange illustrations of personified flowers from the late 19th century and tried something a little different.

Monday, 29 January 2018

Some Common British Trees

Here's a little side project from the last few days. My pal Sammy Borras has been drawing a new comic (about a monster Riot Grrrl band!) which needs more rural backgrounds than her usual work and she wasn't happy with how she was drawing trees. I think the trick is to know what type of tree you're trying to draw so you can give it more distinctive features, but that takes a lot of research if you don't know much about trees to start with.

I'm a great believer in just asking someone who already knows before wasting time and energy starting from scratch, so I made her a cheat sheet showing the major visual features of 8 common British trees. Maybe someone else will find it useful too?

Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Inktober 2017 - Happy Hallowe'en!

Day 31 : brush inking and coloured ink

It's that time again! Tabitha and her coven are busily preparing for All Hallows Eve, when many spirits roam the village and magic is at its strongest.

In Tabitha's village some people still carve traditional turnip lanterns, while others have swapped to the new imported pumpkins, but this year her job is just to ensure they're all lit before sunset.

Happy Hallowe'en!

Part 1, Bonus Picture, Part 2, Part 3

Monday, 30 October 2017

Inktober 2017 - Part 3

Day 21 : fineliners and felt tip pens - Eventually the school agreed that Nettle should just sit out of P.E. lessons.

Day 22 : mapping pen and brush pen - "It followed us home, can we keep it?"

I was hoping for this one to have a more scary feel, but the Mirror Twins seem to be too cute and are taking away from the horror of the black dog. I'm pleased with the composition though.

Day 23 : G-pen - Tree fairies of his type don't usually venture very far from their home tree, so Sweetpea has never seen a sweet chestnut before.

Day 24 : brush inking and coloured ink - I regretted not using coloured ink for the flames on day 1 every time I opened the sketchbook, so I finally relented and did a new version of the same concept, this time with coloured ink.

Day 25 : cartridge pen - Lottie is fairly sure she shouldn't talk to the Crow Boy, but she doesn't really want him to leave either.

Day 26 : mapping pen - Sweetpea's ear frills, like the leaves on his tree, turn brown and fall off in Autumn. Also like the leaves on his tree, they tend not to go at the same time.

Day 27 : fineliners and grey pens - The next three were all done while helping Sammy at MCM! It's very hard to find time to do anything else while at a convention, so I feel quite proud of myself for not falling behind. While we were on a bus Sammy requested some more pictures of Poppet's friends, 'with a musical instrument', so here are the two we didn't see in the teacup picture earlier.

Day 28 : brush pen and ink wash - Louise's house also plays host to a slightly alarming type of house fairy called Lob-Lie-By-The-Fire. He looks a little more frightening than most house fairies, but he just wants to sit by your fire and help with the washing up.

I still can't quite believe I managed to do this one after spending 9 hours selling comics in a packed convention hall, and a further 45 minutes on a bus.

Day 29 : fineliners and felt tip pens - I caught con lurgy so this was one of the hardest ones to do all month, I felt dreadful while I was drawing it! It's also very hard to draw when one has to stop every 5 seconds to blow one's nose. Still, it looks pretty good I think.

Leilus has a lot of features he could choose as his 'I am a demon' warning sign, but the tongue is the obvious best choice because it can be hidden inside his mouth. The stereotypical spaded tail would probably be the worst.

Day 30 : ink and water - Well, it seems I finally ran out of steam and had to settle for one that I really wasn't happy with. I wanted to draw Nat one more time because it was the last day, but I was still ill and didn't have the brain power to get him on model or work out a good composition. I probably should have used a different pen too, but I'd hardly used ink and water at all! I should have been sensible and opted for something with less risk, but these are the lessons we learn in Inktober.

One of the reasons Nat keeps his hair so long is that it's usefully prehensile.

Just a Hallowe'en picture still to come!

Part 1, Bonus Picture, Part 2, Hallowe'en