Leeds, Malta and new publications

It’s the last two events of the year for me, Leeds Thought Bubble and Malta Comic Con. A great way to end what has been a very busy con season.

At Leeds I will be in the New Dock Hall sharing a table ( 77 ) with the ever wonderful Howard Hardiman.


For both events I will be selling the usual comics, plus a couple of new works. Necessary MonstersMurderbox, parts 2, 3, 4 also Trees and Heads. I will also have a bunch of screen prints made earlier this year.


Sadly I didn’t get it together to finish, Rain On Glass. This will now be ready for Angouleme 2014, which the Dessinators ( Sally Anne, Francesca and Oliver ) will be attending .

Francesca did an amazing job organising the application, and also put together the required anthology. Details on her blog.


Another anthology that I will have work in is Ink +Paper. David has pulled together some great talent and has also made a lovely cover to house them all.


John Miers has collected the Score and Script pages in a plush collection, and I have a page in this along with a lot of  very talent cartoonists. This was a really fun project to take part in.

Final publication news is that I took part in the Amsterdam Zine Jam, sending some comics and getting a really cool catalogue in return. I would have liked to have gone to this one. Maybe next time.

zine jam

Finally, I’ve been filling little sketchbooks with drawings of people on the way to work. But made them fit in the Nec Monster world. I have two sketchbooks, that will have a painted cover. If anyone is interested in buying them, I will have them with me at Leeds/Malta. ( I think £15 for one ).

Thanks for reading, hopefully I will see you at one of these events. Enjoy the rest of the weekend 🙂


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Rain on glass – full spread

Inside cover


This is the full ( Draft ) image for the inside front cover, so it will be split over two pages. Standard  for my comics having the comic title and page contents. It’s nice to know what’s ahead.

I like the look of the finish  these pages. Using a brush to render has a quality that really appeals to me. There is the opportunity to be smooth with the finish, but what I enjoy is the random malfunctions.

I’m going to stay with this approach. What do you think? Do you think this approach works? Does this appeal to you in any way. Any feedback would be appreciated.

Thank you in advance.


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Rain on Glass – cover ink

ROG cover

So far this year has been a REAL struggle with the creative stuff. it feels as though I’m getting slower and have actually gone into reverse.

It has been a really frustrating six months. Around the half way point of a year I lie to add up the amount of work produced and estimate what I can complete before the years out.

Not this time.

Part of the problem is drawing digitally. I love working in Manga Studio, and it’s part of a process for working on Necessary Monsters.

But for me, it’s a procrastination process.

I have software for logging my time, blocking the internet etc. But I’m weak and still waste time.

So this weekend I broke out the brush and ink equipment, and in a few hours had inked four pages of my next comic Rain on Glass.

The image above is for the cover.

I may start counting the amount of work produced soon 🙂

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Tree – Hyde park


Angouleme ( Bloggage at FP here ) is over and it’s back to the lonely hours drawing Necessary Monsters. Currently half way through part 3 ( Of 5 ) . Have finally organised the latest studio set – up, after moving out of Stoke Newington last year. I promised a blog about my process, in it will be pictures of various studios over the years. Bet you can’t wait.

Here is the follow up to Same Day Return. This is how I start my writing process.


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Sketchbook 3

I like Sean Azzopardi’s comics, I do. And some of his recent comics have certainly had elements of sketchbook in the, Have a look at the reviews of 100 Days Of Winter, Nine Months Of Beige, and Eight Tablet Dream for examples of what I’m talking about. But these were definitely comics, with narratives, storytelling, and sequential art amongst the sketchbook pieces. Looking back, the last time I looked at one of his sketchbooks proper was here in 2010, and then it was merely a mention at the end of a review for Wallace Sendak.
But this is very much a pure sketchbook. Sure, there’s some text here and there, and occasional comics work, but mostly this exists to catch Azzopardi’s ideas. It’s also part of a wish to push on and change, a move away from A5 black and white mini comics sees this sketchbook grow and burst into vivid colour.
In his comics I’ve often commented on how much I like Azzopardi’s artwork, his range of styles is getting wider and wider, but I have a particular delight in the pages where he’s really loosened up, opening up the page, dropping panels for pages at a time, giving his sketchy, line based work such life.
So seeing this much bigger, full colour work is a real change. But not something I’m going to review. I mean really, what’s the point…. but I will tell you it’s lovely looking through and seeing the range of styles on show, and some gorgeous works….

( From Richard Bruton, FP blog. )

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Return to school

( Skull sketch – brush and ink on paper. Previously blogged from a rubbish photo )

It’s been a bit of a break on this blog, I’m sure my exciting and interesting posts have been missed.I have recently had a trip to Chicago, then attended Comiket followed by a trip to Toronto. So it’s taken me a while to catch up with myself. I was going to write a long post about these events but it was so exciting I decided to just live it rather than blog it. I did write a report about TCAF for the Forbidden Planet blog, but I’m not sure I did the event justice as I spent most of the event behind my table. I have to give a nod and a thank you to Crystal For being a wonderful table buddy during the weekend. TCAF has had a massive impact on my festival/convention going experience. In the UK we have Thought Bubble which I’d say is the best event now, it has many many, plus points. Comiket is getting there, but the last one had serious venue space issues, that made it uncomfortable for exhibitors and punters. But is there too many now? Too many or just idiocy in trying clash against a ‘rival’ event. Having now entered the (Well) Seasoned festival exhibitor stage, I’ll be selective about events to attend and use the time saved elsewhere. I guess it’s a positive to have that choice. Waffle, waffle.
The important stuff is the work, and making the work though. I did plan to take a complete year away from all the festival stuff,to make masses of comics. Due to random events it hasn’t quite worked out that way. But so far this year i have been involved in an anthology, a book and making a sketchbook. There is a new issue of a diary comic that has been lettered and roughed out, similarly for Black Leather (I know, I keep saying this). Both these comics will be ready for Leeds. The diary comics will be collected into a book called ‘Three years gone’, it will be about 150 pages.
the main news for me is that the Chicago trip gave me and Daniel some time to talk about projects. We decided that maybe it was time to make another volume of Necessary Monsters.

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