Friday, 22 May 2009

Cracked

Another children's book illustration that fits this weeks Illustration Friday theme "cracked". This was from Hoppy no Atarashii Uchi (Hoppy's New House), one of my own stories published by Fukuinkan Shoten in Japan.

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Nasty!

The latest book I've been working on is a new edition of Children's Laureate Michael Rosen's "Nasty" for Barn Owl Books in London. First released in the 1980's, this new edition will run with 25 black and white text drawings by yours truly, plus colour cover.

All will be revealed in August when the book is released, in the meantime here's a sneak preview of the cover design.

Friday, 8 May 2009

Parade

Here's something from the cupboard that matches this weeks Illustration Friday brief "Parade". It's from the picture book King Smelly Feet, written by Hiawyn Oram, released in the UK by Andersen Press a few years ago.

Tuesday, 5 May 2009

Escapism

Here's a very recent doodle. I seem to be drawing a lot of fantasy towns lately, I think it's all part of the way my mind works with escapism.


Strange to say, much as I love the natural world my imagination tends to be most energized when I'm in a crowded, urban city environment. I love the country, exploring forests and craggy landscapes, but if I spend too long away from the city my imagination is dulled. My mind perhaps feeds off the surroundings but rarely goes beyond, I become relaxed and inspired by oneness with nature, but that's as far as it goes.

In the city however I'm always mentally escaping, my imagination is constantly finding ways to soar beyond the concrete or seeking escapism within it. It's that switching-off from reality, a yearning to escape the shackles of the town that really motivates my fantasy vision.

It's a paradox that although my art is closely connected to the natural world I need the city for my creative vision to soar. In essence I need both - no trees: no vision, but no city: no escapism. The more concrete, the more inhuman the environment, the more I seek humanity in my art. Many of the greatest fantasy artists are often from very urban backgrounds, it can be said that city dwellers really appreciate the fantastic properties of the natural world because they yearned for these things when they grew up. Fantasy for them is a magical release from the humdrum.