Friday, 30 January 2009

Me in the Kitchen doing some drawing (Final stages)

Here are the final stages of the picture of me in the kitchen (see last post)In this version I've added colour to me, and have coloured the lines of the sketch, it looked odd with the black lines. Still not happy with the lines though, I think line work will always be better done away from the computer, it always looks too computery.
In this version, which i'm happy to consider as the finished piece ive got rid of almost all the lines and I think it works fine. Im quiet happy with this little experiment, its quite good fun drawing from memory. It isn't a study, even though I was sat in the room I drew, I sat as depicted with my back to the room. Below is a picture of the reality of the scene, taken just after i finished. The only alteration I made was that I changed into a matching Tee-shirt. Can you spot the differences? Overall I think I did a pretty good job of representing the scene. This kitchen is my current studio (between meals). I wish I had a proper studio again.

Me in the Kitchen doing some drawing (in stages)

I thought it might be fun to show the stages of a drawing as I make it in illustrator. I'm not saying this is a how to, because I don't really know 'how to' properly anyway. It more of a how I did. If anything it might help me realize later the point where I started to over work it.

The picture is me in the kitchen in my house drawing. even though I was sat in that very position it was all drawn from memory, only occasionally looking round to see how close I got it. In this case I started with a line sketch drawn straight into the computer. I don't normally do this but its worked out okay. I normal just start by blocking in shapes and colours, I guess the main advantage of doing a bit of planing at the starts it helps get the layout right from the get go. Soon I'm going to start playing with bringing in sketches and doodles I've scanned in.

then in a layer under my sketch i put a wee bit of colour about. Just some rough blocks to help give a base to build on. A bit like how they used to do on 'Watercolour Challenge' on Channel 4.

This is what it looks like at this stage without the sketch on top.

I then work into this abit more to give it a bit of detail and hopefully make things look abit more solid. I've tried to get some sense of light as well. The windows on the door are north facing so light never comes in like this normally but that doesn't really matter. It was dark when I drew this anyway.
Again without the sketch on top.
Here it is again with the full sketch, me included this time.
Lastly here is the most finished picture so far. With me as a Drawing Boy rather than a real person. In its own way it kind of works, but eventually id like to get it working without any of the lines. Still need to do some work on the background, e.g. put some Cds on the CD rack, a load of stuff on the bottom shelf near the bin and make the bin look like a bin. So far though its going OK

Tuesday, 27 January 2009

Man with scarf

Here is another test (see "the Boy and the Rabbit Plant". Im also trying to show people of different ages. Below is another version, without the paper texture and slightly stronger colours.

The Boy and the Rabbit Plant

Here is a wee experiment. Firstly I'm keen to play with my characters a little. How I mainly draw people isn't working quite how I want in some of the pictures I've done lately, i think due to the different media I've been working with. The result is this boy, a slightly more realistic depiction. Its not a complete departure from my style and there was a point a few years ago where I'd draw people like this alot. I like him. The second part of the experiment is the use of a texture within the picture, in this case a wood texture. Ive not spent much time integrating it into the image but I think its going to be something worth playing with.

Boy the Giant Robot and the Orange and the Cloud

Monday, 26 January 2009

Boy the Giant Robot and the Tree

Boy is a Giant Robot. Boy is a machine. A machine is an object. Boy can talk. Boy thinks that all objects can talk. Boy is silly.

The Secret Film Society

This is a weird picture for me to have done. Its a logo I made for my friend Simon Hill. I decided to draw it all with the shapes you get in illustrator alongside other features I wouldn't normally use for my own work. Its a wee bit sinister and very much not part of my normal ouvre, I think I spelt that right.
I decided on this colour bear in the end. Its slightly redder than the orange one I did previously.
Here you can see all three bear colours. Click the picture to get a wallpaper size version.

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Brown Bear and Orange Bear

Here is a picture. It is of a bear. I did one version of the bear in brown. I did another orange. I actually did the the orange one first. I couldn't choose which to use so I've used both. Which do you like the most?

Friday, 23 January 2009

The half Empty glass

Here is a picture I've done for an exhibition at uni called "disappearing". It is a strange picture I think. Its not brilliantly drawn, but its all ways good to try something a bit different.

The Disappearing Galleon

Here is my latest bit of experimenting. In this one ive tried to keep things simple, and as a result this one is a step closer to my older images. Im quite happy with the result. Ive played around with the character also, he's ok but still not quite there. I like the sea in this one.

Wednesday, 21 January 2009

The boat and the sea and the storm clouds and the crow

Above is version 2, underneath is version 1.
As I wasn't completely happy with the first version of this picture I thought I'd go back into it. the main area I felt needed to change was the sea. It wasn't working like I wanted it to. I'm much happier with the second version. The crow below is my favourite thing in this picture.

Bee is for b

Here is my letter what I done for an alphabet project what people on my Illustration MA are doing. I like it.

see the whole set of alphabet pictures here.

Monday, 19 January 2009


The boat and the sea and the storm clouds

Here is my latest experiment. I'm quite happy with it, but overall it doesn't quite work how I wanted it to. Mainly the sea and the main character. I am more happy with the top half though. Especially the crow.

Thursday, 15 January 2009

The Sunset and the Whale

Here is another bit of adobe illustrator practice, and again another character from my sea rabbit story. I'm happy with this image just because I feel I'm starting to get to grips with illustrator, as well as using colour and putting backgrounds into my images. Its another step in the right direction, and its a bit of a different kind of picture for me to be making, which is also a good thing. Below are some more examples from my website to help illustrate the contrast between these experimental pictures and my usual way of working.

Old Picture of SeaRabbit

Here are two images I used on my website showing the same Sea Rabbit character but drawn in my more traditional brush and ink way. Although I'm happy with these images it is much harder to create a sense of underwateryness in solid black and white. even with the flat colour it still doesnt quite get there the same way. Although I'm happy with the work I've been doing for the past few years, and I still like the work I do with brush and ink, this is a good example of how moving into other areas will help me do things that where harder to do in the past.

Ive not really mentioned my website much here, go to and take a wee gander at what I done.

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Underwater Rabbit

The learn Japanese pictures what I've been putting up have both helped me with my learning of Japanese but have been a good way of getting used to using adobe illustrator. Here is another bit of practicing. It features an underwater rabbit from a Super Christmas 2008 story that didn't happen because I couldn't quite get the artwork working. its very hard to draw underwater scenes in solid black and white. Its only a first attempt but I'm fairly happy with it, its certainly the most successful depiction of anything to do with this story outside of the basic doodles of the characters I've done. Im not sure what I'll be doing with this story at the moment but I hope to take it further at some point in the next 60 years.

Saturday, 10 January 2009

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 10 the colour pinku

Look the moon! Look stars! Look a city! Look I'm on a hill! Look pink!

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 9 the colour chairo

Even though its springtime everything is brown! I don't know why....

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 8 the colour orenji iro

Is the sun rising or is it setting? No, It is orange.

Friday, 9 January 2009

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 5 the colour shiroi

Here is white. It will look more like white when I get round to doing grey.

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 4 the colour kiiro

This is yellow. Its supposed to be an egg. Hello and yummy. Im quite good at doing egg in eggcup, its all about the timing ad dont forget the soldiers.

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 3 the colour aoi

Hello! Hello Blue! Here is Blue! The cloud is Blue!

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 2 the colour akai

Here is the colour red. Hooray

Tom Learns Japanese-lesson 1 the colour midori

I am currently trying to learn Japanese, I have a nice and helpful shiny Nintendo DS game what I got for Christmas that is helping me. I thought it might help me to learn if I made pictures of the things I now know. Here is the first one it is for green, which is written in Romanji as 'midori'. If you want to describe something as green you pop a 'no' in between the words, i.e. 'midori no ringo' means green apple. yum. I will be putting up more of these as I do them, you can look forward to more colours and some numbers too. Hooray!
PS if anyone who does know japanese spots any errors i'd be super grateful if you could let me know. There will be errors.

Sunday, 4 January 2009

All shiny and all new Super Christmas for 2009

Here is the first Super Christmas 2009 image, its the earliest I've ever started a new Christmas book, having only finished the last one three weeks ago. The reason for the early start is that I'm ready to change Super Christmas in many ways this year and its going to take a bit to get used to it. Here is the first experiment, its the first super christmas picture made in colour (some old ones have been through photoshop but im not counting that) and the first to be drawn entirely with my trusty computer. Its also a rareity for me in that it is a landscape picture (I got asked for one a month or so ago and could only find two good ones in my portfolio so im trying to make an effort to make some). As an experiment Im pretty happy with it, Im not sayings its perfect (I'm not sure with how the text works within th picture for starters) but I think its a good road to keep following.