Monday, 28 September 2015

Waterton Comic Exhibition

The next Artwalk on Wednesday, 30th September 2015 Wakefield Museum is opening a small exhibition of working sketches and selected pages Staz JohnsonRichard Bell and myself, the artists from the up and coming Charles Waterton Comic. John Whitaker the mysterious fourth member of the Waterton Comic team will also be there. Mysterious in that it was all his idea and he did most of the writing and artist wrangling for it.

Exhibition runs until 7th November 2015.

Last minute sketch before the exhibition begins.

Illustrations for David Chappell's
book 'The Great Marquess'

Chantry Chapel

Mary Bolles Water Tower
Old Hall, Heath
Sandal Castle

Illustrations for  David Chappell's forth coming ebook 'The Great Marquess'. David lived in the area of Wakefield where I now live and contacted me asking if I would be interested  in illustrating his book. I said yes because after spending so long working inside on the Young Waterton comic strip the thought of getting some fresh air and a bit of door step exploring appealed to me a lot.

David wanted specific scenes for his fantasy novel so it took a bit of research for Old Hall, Heath was demolished (and later) rebuilt and Sandal Castle is all but a ruin now. Chantry Chapel and Mary Bolles Water Tower are still standing so they were fairly easy to photograph for reference.

Thursday, 24 September 2015

WIP: Heath Old Hall

Line work for an illustration for David Chappell's forth coming book 'The Great Marquess'. The drawing is based on Old Hall, Heath near Wakefield.

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

WIP Chantry Chapel

Line work for David Chappell's forth coming book 'The Great Marquess'. The drawing is based on Chantry Chapel located near Wakefield Town Centre, which David knew from his youth.

Saturday, 12 September 2015

WIP Mary Bolles Water Tower

Line work for a book illo for David Chappell's 'The Great Marquess' forth coming book. The drawing is based on Mary Bolles Water Tower located near Heath Common, Wakefield which David knew from his youth.

Monday, 7 September 2015

Pen Love: The Rolinx Mapping Pen

I like using dip pen and ink. Over the years I have tried various nibs, holders and ink hoping for the right combination. They will work for awhile but then something happens in the execution of a drawing which means I suddenly fall out of love with my chosen one. I'm fickle like that.

During that fall out period there is always one dip pen that I return to for reassurance and this is it. A Rolinx Mapping Pen I first found them in a stationers shop in my home town of Bletchley about 33 years ago. I was doing comics for fanzines and the small press at the time and knew that artists used a dip pen of some kind. Being in a small Buckinghamshire town the Mapping Pen was all that was available to me, a mapping pen and a bottle of the cheapest black Parker ink.

At that time I hated using the dip pen because it did what I love it for now. It made a mess, curves were not smooth, paper fibre clogged the extra fine tip and the ink dripped. My hand would cramp and the middle knuckle would ache from gripping the cheap plastic body too tightly. I was trying hard to draw in someone else's style and not comfortable with my own. The Catch 22 situation, I didn't have confidence back then, I over compensated and did not relax until decades later.

The tip is very sharp and capable of very fine lines where the tines are flexible enough to give good line variation with pressure. And they are cap-able. The amount of times I have pricked myself on a nib reaching for something in the dark means caping a dip pen is a very good idea.

After using fibre tip and brush pens for the Young Waterton strip these three  months past it's time to get back with the Rolinx again. They are not cheap and have a short life span in which you throw the whole thing away so environmentally maybe not the wisest choice. When they work, for drawing and sketching they are magnificent.

Sunday, 6 September 2015

WIP: Curious Stories From Asia

Curious Encounters of the Human Kind: Burmar

WIP. A series of black and white pen and ink maps featuring aspects of the Asian continent for the writer/adventurer Paul Spencer Sochaczweski. Map Number 1 Myanmar (Burmar). More maps from different parts of the Asian continent to follow.

Find out more about Paul's work at

Thursday, 3 September 2015

Jumping Cats of Inle Lake, Myanmar

Warm up drawing for a map project I'm illustrating at the moment. The art work  for the map will be in black and white and hand drawn with dip pen & ink, with the various elements (of which there are many) scaled and positioned in Photoshop, I've not been able to draw with my Wacom pen of late so was surprised that I liked this cat jumping through a hoop representing Inle Lake, Myanmar (Burma) that appeared when warming up.