Sunday, 16 January 2011


This is an old-ish photo before I coloured it in and it got creased in an incident... anyway, this is it! Trying to use Kate's style, probably failing!


The Corinne Bailey Rae illustration's finally finished. I'am reasonably pleased with it, but definitely reckon it could have looked bigger if it were taken on a larger scale. I'd quite like to screenprint/colour the final thing, just to get the potential for the drawing out, as it's heavily detailed from around 5 evenings of work. Time well spent? I ain't convinced.

The Great Gatsby

This is the basic illustration for the design of my cover for the literary classic. It'll need editing/colouring before I can think about the back and the spine of the book, but fingers crossed it'll look good, and by the 28th.

Friday, 14 January 2011

I'm sitting on the roof of my house
With a shotgun and a six pack of beer
The newscaster say's "the enemy is among us!"
As bombs explode on the 30 bus
Kill that middle class indecision
Now is not the time for liberal thought
So I go hunting for witches
Heads are going to roll
So I go hunting
1990's, optimistic as a teen
But now its terror, airplanes crash into towers
The Daily mail say's "the enemy is among us!"
"Taking our women and taking our jobs"
All reasonable thought is being drowned out
By the non-stop baying, baying for blood
So I go hunting for witches
Heads are going to roll
So I go hunting
I was an ordinary man, with ordinary desire
I watched TV it informed me
I was an ordinary man with ordinary desire
There must be accountability
Disparate and misinformed
Fear keeps us all in place
remembering 7/7.


Wednesday, 12 January 2011


I have several bits to upload on to here, and I'll do it once I've unpacked my dslr from it's bagged, photographed the drawings and got them on the computer. For now, you, the reader, will have to
put up with this mundane message.

The things that I will upload are:

My M.I.A drawing (attempting to use Kate from vis com's style).
Things from my now neglected moleskine.
Corinne (once it's fucking done). Oh and it's heavily inspired by Kate and Iain McArthur
And my minorly watercolour screenprints I finally got back today.
I might upload a photo of the Anna Calvi drawing too, but I ain't sure.

After that I'll need to:

Sort my essay out, it's not going to write itself.
Finish, and correct all the issues with my Derren Brown painting. That won't finish itself either.
Start the Paloma Faith illustration, continuing the same theme as the Corinne Bailey Rae.
And college work.
And photography, I could do with taking a load of magnificent photos of some shit.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Corinne Bailey Rae - Diving For Hearts

Diving for Hearts

Till then I wasn't alive,
I longed for you like the lovesick moon pulls the tide.
So I peeled off my skin,
I just slipped right in
And I become alive.

'Cause down here there's no fear
There's no cause for panic
There's just bright cold calm,
I feel no harm.
This underwater feeling's abandon and it fires my heart.

Was it emotion
Or should I just keep on diving,
Keep on diving down?
Under this ocean
I long to keep on diving,
Till my heart is found.
It's got a hold on me
Can't forget the things I've seen

World will all end
And new worlds will begin
It's a thought so stark.
We're at once determinant,
Yet so insignificant,
Spinning out in the velvet dark.

Still, down here
There's no fear
There's no cause for panic
There's just this bright cold calm
Yeah, it leaves a scar
So show me how to find again,
If I'm lost, show me where you are

Until then...

This is why everyone needs to hear The Sea.
But the hardest thing?
Knowing that these very lyrics, and every single other syllable, is a dedication to her partner.


The Sea is one of the best albums to come out of 2010. And why it failed to win the Mercury Prize, I'll never know. After resisting to listen to it at first, the album (on cd*) is the must heart-melting, atomic emotioned, delectable... oh! I could go on and on describing how much I bloody LOVE this album, but really I'am not getting anywhere. T

he purpose of this entry is to talk about a piece I'am currently working on (a break from Derren) which just so happens to feature the Leeds-born goddess. By taking the album, I'am producing a black and white ink pen depiction of Corinne Bailey Rae, dominated by "The Sea" around her, as if it's almost swallowing her up. I'am also taking a style that originally occurred in an earlier nautical themed sketch, and applying the same technique of tight detail, where waves clash and overlap around her face. I really hope the illustration becomes what I imagine it to be, and once it's done I'll bang it straight up here.

I feel so lucky to have seen her live, especially in her hometown. It still feels like a pleasure, reminiscing back to the fact it's quite possibly musically the best gig I've ever been to... who knows!

Oh, and I quit Facebook today.


Tuesday, 4 January 2011

Derren - late update

By now I've added alot more to the painting. I've moved down the left side of the face, working on the mouth and chin area, as well as beginning on the jawline. I've repeated over certain parts of the face to create more depth with the water I clean my brushes with. It's still a long way off, but I've recieved some lovely comments from Derren's fans on Facebook. Hey ho!

Sunday, 2 January 2011

Phil Dunne - New for 2011

"'Cold Wind Coming' a new personal piece.
About the times when life is tough and you can't find strength. You can't look at yourself. But there is something deep down that keeps pushing you foward. And you find inner peace in your turmoil, there is a great release of joy from finding your way out of your struggles."

This piece is about being watched...about how much of our private information and personal moments are being transmitted so rapidly on a daily basis, through social media websites.
And for all you arachnophobes out there, yes that is a sketch of a spider's eyes!"
"'Lion' a new personal piece
Be bold, tough and proud about your art or whatever you do in life."

Quality work from Phil Dunne once again, introducing brand new pieces, drifting in to using lighter pastel colours this time, which is a nice sign that Phil's work is maturing. This is cemented by the fact Phil states what each design means to him.

Kindle research - Comm Tech

Is the Kindle really a good idea? Or is it just a new addition to the mod-con surface of our society?
Is it technological development for good, or for bad?
Or could it ultimately change our lifestyles forever?

The Kindle - released by internet giants Amazon - is the latest must have for the street-wise kind, for those that are constantly on the go and lacking room for a stack of books.
By utilizing new technologies such as "e-ink electronic paper", the Kindle operates as a potential library's worth of reading material, providing a diverse landscape of books straight from one screen. But could all this technological "improvement" force the demise of paper based literature? The eventual consequences might lead to the saddening scene of empty libraries and even more self-induced escapism and anti-socialism. It's not only a knock on effect to us, but to those who really on book production as an industry, and sourcing all the materials that go in to producing any book. We are the people that'll be losing our history, only to see it glossed over in a digital remake.

The rise of the Kindle could also amount in the rise of production in the poorest of factories in the east, where all our gadgets are pieced together.

On the other hand, maybe the Kindle could offer up some benefits? How about the ecologically friendly side? The Kindle could prevent the rising amount of deforestation on a global scale and improve the lives of those that desire the Kindle the most.

Technologically, we're flying very close to the sun as far as our basic resources are concerned. Maybe planet earth isn't capable of providing support for all these obscene priviledges.


19 December 2010 3:11AM
Yep. Totally. The Kindle is disappointing and doesn't allow for controlled art direction: you get the text, but not the design, and not the mood. There are some brilliant magazines and books out there but their Kindle versions miss the point, because the look and feel aren't included. The iPad allows the creator to control the experience, keep the creative vision, and the reader's experience is enhanced as a result. I don't know why anyone would buy the Kindle as a device: it's a good app on the iPad (and I use it as such for buying text-only books), but it's not worth buying as a piece of hardware.

20 December 2010 12:37AM
The thing that always makes me laugh when people enthuse about "reading" a book on an iPad/Kindle is that they claim that it's better than the real thing. No, I'm afraid it's not. Reading a book is more than just scanning words that assemble themselves into a sentence that conveys the thoughts and ideas of the writer. When you read a book, you're physically engaging with a medium that has been around a hell of a lot longer than computers. You can't compare the printed word with the electronic. It's impossible. Oooh, it's backlit. So? When I think it's not bright enough to read I turn on a light. There is nothing comparable in either the Apple store, etc, to going into a bookshop - say, Shakespeare and Co in Paris - and having the smell of old books hit you, or that chemical whiff that comes out of a new textbook, or the texture of paper under your fingertips. There ain't an app for that. iPad and Kindle devotees might claim that they're seeing the way of the future. I doubt that. Yes, you could probably revolutionise the newspaper and magazine markets, but not much else. Ultimately, why waste your time and energy downloading books when you don't even own a physical copy? And besides, who's to say that the format these books come in right now won't change in the next three, five years and you have to potentially replace them or convert them all to the new format? Exactly. With a book, you don't have that worry.
Keep the iPads and Kindles for yourselves. I'd rather actually read a book, rather than scan a facsimile. And besides, when I want to throw a book across the room, at least I'm not running the risk of destroying hundreds of pounds of penis replacement from Mr Jobs, am I?

20 December 2010 9:21AM
So this is the first time publishers have had to worry about keeping up with technology is it? Not like, say, 10 years ago when every magazine in the world started publishing online. This is hardly a new concept, just another example of ipad fever apparently overriding many people's sense of perspective.

20 December 2010 3:07PM
anyone using ipad and kindle for reading are not book readers...
they are fashion/gadget freaks....

Follow in the wake of Kindle's success is the Apple iPad.

"i was horrified when the guardian Hay festival, shrine of literature, hosted a demo of electronic books, storing umpteen volumes to access at the touch of a button. I joined the harrumphing curmudgeons. "It'll never catch on," we muttered. why squint at a screen when you can fondle the pages?"
Yours magazine, july 2010

Who's going to lose out if the Kindle takes over?

Illustrators and Designers
Book Shops
the Elderly

What will book readers lose?

The tradition and art of book production - the physical form of the book.
The excitement of picking up a book and physically purchasing it.
The simplest things, like flicking over the pages.
A lack of connection with the author.
Sentimental value?
Braile copies

But many people are justifing the world of the Kindle, with comments such as:

"It’s quite possible to still love “real” books and benefit from the portability and interactivity offered by an eBook reader like Kindle. They’re not mutually exclusive. Books I plan to share with others or that do not adapt well to the eBook medium (like coffee table books and those with complex illustrations and graphics) I will still buy in “dead tree” format. Books I intend to read and reference and that I’d like to always have with me in a highly readable and accessible format I’ll buy on the Kindle. Best of both worlds." :

"If the Kindle succeeds on its current terms, and all signs suggest it'll be a blockbuster, Amazon will make a bundle. But everyone else with a stake in a vibrant book industry—authors, publishers, libraries, chain bookstores, indie bookstores, and, not least, readers—stands to lose out."

" To understand why, consider how simple it is to buy books on your Kindle. You press a button to take you to Amazon's store, type in a title or author, and press Buy. In 10 seconds, the book's yours. Everything is automated: When you buy the Kindle, Amazon pre-syncs your reader with your account info, so there's no need to type in a credit card number or billing address."

"Everyone is worried that Amazon will end up becoming to books what Apple is to music," Paul Aiken, executive director of the Authors Guild, told me. (Aiken's group has criticized the Kindle's text-to-speech feature, which automatically creates a kind of audio book from an e-book; the guild says that Amazon should compensate authors for reading their books aloud. But that's another argument for another time.)"

"And even if the publishing industry isn't devastated when a single bookstore takes over the e-book world, the marketplace for books will be diminished. Amazon stands as proof of how innovative retail practices can transform an industry; over the last decade and a half, the company revolutionized the book market with innovations like customer reviews, collaborative filtering, one-click shopping, and unbeatable customer service. It launched all these services to stay ahead of its rivals. But what will happen when it has no rivals?"


This video demonstrates the various functions of the Kindle, also displaying the improvements since it's predecessors.

I'am beginning to question whether as humans, technology is draining our sense of HUMANITY.

This is another "Stuff Magazine" review - this time for the older e-book, the Kindle 2. I've found from both reports that the main emphasis is on form, as opposed to function. The presenters seem to prefer walking us through how "well designed" the Kindle is, in the start of the video. This may hint at how everyone is presumed to be image concious, and almost scared not to have the latest "must have". Is that proof of how we're controlled or is it just me being paranoid?

Statistics (taken from

"On Christmas Day, for the first time ever, customers purchased more Kindle books than physical books. The Kindle Store now includes over 390,000 books and the largest selection of the most popular books people want to read, including New York Times Bestsellers and New Releases."

The idea of digital books outselling REAL books scares me.

It seems impossible to pinpoint how many ebooks have been sold in the last two to three years, with this qoute from the blog: "Anyway, in truth, the only way we will really get to the bottom of the strength of the current ebook market would be for all ebook reader manufacturers to come clean about how many readers they have sold as well as for retailers to detail the sales of ebooks.  It is only through transparent statistics such as this that we will really know where the ebook market is."

I stumbled upon this online article from The Guardian on how Kindle sales, for the first time, have overtaken the traditional hardback book.

"Spare a thought for the humble hardback this Christmas. It seems the traditional giftwrapped tome is being trumped by downloads, after Amazon customers bought more e-books than printed books for the first time on Christmas Day.

As people rushed to fill their freshly unwrapped e-readers – one of the top-selling gadgets this festive season – the online retailer said sales at its electronic book store quickly overtook orders for physical books. Its own e-reader, the Kindle, is now the most popular gift in Amazon's history.

Amazon's shares rose sharply today after it updated investors on a strong Christmas performance. On its peak day, 14 December, the retailer said customers ordered more than 9.5m items worldwide, the equivalent of a record-breaking 110 items a second."

"Although Amazon has repeatedly trumpeted "record-breaking" Kindle sales, it has refused to say exactly how many have been sold since the 2007 launch.

Sandeep Aggarwal, an analyst with Collins Stewart in New York who has tracked the Kindle's performance, believes that across both models – the paperback-sized Kindle 2 and larger DX – Amazon may be on target to have sold a little over 500,000 units by the end of the year."

When purchasing a book from Amazon, you are essentially only renting the book. This is down to the fact you cannot resell a book, and it is stored on your personal library of digital books, as opposed to permanently existing on the machine itself.

Sarah Larnach

Larnach is a fellow Aussie, and friend of Ladyhawke's. As I mentioned previously, the two artist's (in their own right) worked together in the art direction of her debut album. But in Larnach's colourful world, this is only the tip of the iceberg. Her work's gathered a steady rate of reputation, as Ladyhawke fans were exposed by a miniscule tease of what the illustration world really has to offer in contemporary art, in this way I really hope a handful of people have at least felt the urge to find out more.

Sarah Larnach's style was such a perfect example of rich and beautiful illustration, it's helped direct this form of diary-esque markmaking in to shaping a lot of influence upon the work of many artists and students, including myself. It's a shame it's taking me so long to return to Larnach's work, but I'll promise to myself now, to follow her work more so, and now I will!

Ladyhawke - My Delirium

Since it's 2008 release I've always revisited this music video. What
attracted me at the time was the simple appeal of the watercolour
effect in the video, and how powerful it could be combined with normal
footage of Ladyhawke herself. The song helps too! But the video
melts in to the repeated illustration style of her debut album. It's
slipped my memory who created the work, but whoever it was I'am

In The Flesh

I've just stumbled upon these stunning paintings through the "most popular" on today's homepage. They remind me a lot of Bloc Party's "Intimacy" cover - but removing the romantic side. I absolutely love how the artist has conjured up a stunning sense of macro realism. They resemble something beyond a photo.