Month: March 2014

The Beauty of Working in Sketchbooks

Over the last year I’ve once again started to work in sketchbooks. At first this seemed to be going backwards and left my Cintiq in danger of gathering dust. However, the sketchbook has become a brave new tool helping my jot down ideas at all times and in any place inspiration strikes. A strange form of filing has been born from this as a sketch in one book creates a new one which then follows on that theme. For instance I might sketch out a monster which gives me an idea for a whole heap of different monsters – a sketchbook all about monsters is born. In fact it’s felt quite good redeeming the sketchbook for one of its primary uses – Sketching. This all makes a refreshing change from creating on screen images that can’t always be easily accessed.

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What’s it all about?

If you look at the time difference between my very first post and this one you might have been wondering what has been the delay? To tell the truth I’ve been thinking what I’ve should be writing about. Then at 1.20am this morning inspiration struck. So with a cup of coffee in one hand and a bowl of popcorn with in easy reach here we go.

Over the years many in the creative industries have asked what my role is. When I’ve replied an ‘illustrator’ I’ve sometimes received a strange reaction. It’s as though there is some unsaid hierarchy. I am only a ‘mere illustrator’ which seems to be a lot lower down on the ladder than a real (fine) artist. This seems strange to me as some of the professional illustrators i met have been wonderful draftsman, demonstrating real skills. On the other hand some of the work done by ‘real artists’ show a considerable lack of any talent. To make matter worst, some even look down their noses and call me a ‘graphic illustrator’ as if the title ‘illustrator’ is reserved for only the truly deserving, and my mix of cartoons and madness can never be seen in the same light. Now I’d be the first to admit that I’m no Rembrandt as the monkey head in my last post shows, but I’m proud of what I do. So to all those opinionated arty types please except this blog as a English archer’s two finger salute to your views and creative sensibilities.

So what’s this blog about?…  …it’s about the journey I take every day as i pick up my tools and have a blast creating the things I love. It’s about painting monkey heads wearing a fez…   …it’s about delivering jobs on time to happy clients and working with those clients, both good and bad along the way…   …and it’s about a whole lot more, but most of all it’s about having fun doing what I love whilst showcasing that work. Being my own boss and enjoying the journey, even with the lowly title ‘illustrator’.