Necessary Monsters update

Necessary Monsters - Presbyter


Necessary Monsters has been quiet for over 18 months.

But it lives.

Work has started on part 5 of volume three.

Wait, volume three? When did this start ?

Anyone that has followed Necessary Monsters from the beginning is probably aware that this is a project with a very messed up and idiosyncratic production schedule. Part three started in 2015 and had quite a lively start. By April 2016 four parts of the book had been scripted and drawn. Then Daniel had the small matter of a PHD to complete, so it was put on hold.

The plan is to have it completed for next year. That will be a nice round, TEN YEARS that this beast has occupied our lives.

As from next week i’m going to blog about Monsters long and colourful history. This will lead  up to the completion of book three.

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Projects update, what is going on with Phatcomics ?



As usual, it’s been a while since this blog has been updated. Do people still blog, does anyone still read this ?

By the next update we will probably be vaporised in a nuclear firestorm.

If not, the next year we see me busy with three projects. The first one released from the dusty and cobwebby Phatcomics distribution centre will be 50. This is my new autobio comic, that will be celebrating reaching a landmark birthday. The page count , imaginatively will be fifty. This will make up a bit for the time it’s taken since the last one, Tracks.

It’s taken a while because I’ve been working on the third Necessary Monsters book. At this moment, four of the six parts are completed.

There is no confirmed completion date, sometime next year would be a good guess. It looks good though, and I think that readers of Monsters will be well served with this volume.

The main project for 2017 will be The Voice Of The Hall. This is the project that secured Arts Council funding, a process that took up a lot of my time in 2015. The project will see me producing a book about Hornsey Town Hall, as narrated by the building.

So it’s going to be a busy year, one which i’m looking forward to.


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An example of learning how to colour.

This year i’m going to post mainly about process and development.



( Don’t be shy about contacting me )

So I am going to learn how to add colour.

My work, is generally line, black and white. So it’s going to be a steep curve learning how to add colour. So firstly i’m going to use existing work and add colour and see what develops.

Here is the start, using a splash page from Necessary Monsters, i’ve added some base colouring. I will post the next stage soon.

Colour example

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This year has been a low output year. But I’m busy getting stuff done. The main time grabber is Necessary Monsters. I am currently finishing up part 4 ( Of 6 ). All four parts will be available for Thought Bubble in a few weeks. It’s a slow process. I draw monsters digitally, and this allows me to develop a scribbled note into a fully finished page, with lots of chopping and changing of the composition. When I work on paper, I’m more direct in my execution. A faster working process, but there is a lot of compromise with what I’ve in my head ( offset by the tactile quality of the materials, and the random elements )

The above image is an unfinished panel from issue four.i felt that the crowd had a sameness of height, so putting a larger figure changed the dynamic.

The main reason for posting this is to show that i have more than sketchbook pages going on. Sometimes this is an important thing to do, on a personal level 🙂
Look at me, look at me 🙂

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NM 2.2 – cover ( First draft )

NM2.2 cover

This is a first draft for the NM 2.2 cover. Based on a well known Bond image, with a few tweaks. I am over the half way stage with this book, so it will be finished this year. Then i will be allowed to leave the house for something more interesting than the day job.
This is all being drawn in Manga studio, a great programme for drawing the comics stuff. I have also started using Rescue time, which logs all the screen activity. It’s been fascinating to see how much time I’ve been wasting, that is now converted into productive time.
I have also signed up to Painting Drama busy learning composition. There is an article in this months Imagine FX mag, and you can always check out Chris’s site.
I will blog more about this soon, but after week 7 I have learnt a lot of stuff that has been missing in my process. The eventual goal is to start regular colour work …

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