Tag Archive: cartoons


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Sketching Leyroy.

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This is the design for Leyroy. One of the main characters in the four page story I’m currently working on. He’s probably dodged the draft. He’s probably married but doesn’t know where his wife is. He has a lot of outstanding debts hanging over his head. Not that he cares. He’s loaded. He’s broke. Hotels and racetracks. Laundromats and caravan parks. Leyroy has a bit of style to him. He’s not out steeling push bikes and picking up cigarettes off the street but I wouldn’t say he’s never done it. Serengeti sunglasses and akubra style masters. Leyroy doesn’t drive himself but he’s getting driven around in a Lincoln continental.

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A white line of immaculate silence. A broken feeling of freedom. A collective dream that strikes on a raining night. It passes because people all forget. The streets are flooded and the floorboards are rotting away. The satellites scan the underpass for intruders. The earth shakes. I took six months off work and lived off of my savings to construct pages. Breaking my life up into an hour on and a half an hour out. Smoke a coffee, drink a cigarette. The rebellion rages outside the plastic window. The ash cloud covers the mountains and the book inside is full of lies. An isolated work of art. To say something. To say anything at all. Of memories well forgot and shaped by shifting signs. It all seems so dark and heavy. I still remember drawing on teletype paper and on the back of old work forms that my mother brought home. I’ve had time to build a mental bomb but I must drop ink on everything. For what can be seen as a disposable medium I hold close to my eye like a pearl. Sprawled across walls I can see where my mind has been because for too long it has been hidden in a box. I’m teaching myself, not others. I’m learning what I need to know. I won’t leave my chair. I won’t leave this room. I never could, transfixed with a vendetta to create. When I was seven I took a drawing my older brother had thrown in the bin and finished it off, took it to school and passed it off as entirely my own work. The teacher had her daughter come to the school to see my drawing. Her daughter who was and still is a well known conceptual artist. I can never know what it must have looked like but then and there I began my first art crime and as I remember it…It was a perfect crime. I’ve worked mostly on structure and line. A direction to construct. I can hash out an idea in dot points or expound upon a thumbnail. I photocopy down drawings and juxtapose ideas condensing a coded manifesto into a page. Ideas that sing and harmonise with each other. Lets drink in old ideas and open our eyes to a vision that will silence. A total reinvention of madness and crime. The way we take the world in and the way in which we challenge it. The sound of static and the smell of mould. Typewriters and teak drawing boards. Scalpels and steel rulers. I once threw my pens away.. on the street.. hours later I went back to find them still there on the street…but broken. This is not pain.. It’s vision.

Jimmy the idiot boy

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Reworking Picasso’s Guernica.

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“The horrors of war managed with the weapons of technique.” Wilhelm Boeck

On the 26th of April 1937, German bombers,on behalf of general Franco’s army, bombed the small Basque city of Guernica. The town was undefended and sheltered only civilians well behind the battle-front. The bombardment lasted for three hours and the destruction was almost total.
Early in 1936 Pablo Picasso had been invited by the spanish republican Government to produce a mural for the Spanish pavilion at the Paris World Fair to open in June 1937. Picasso began preparatory sketches for Guernica on May the 1st. The twenty five foot long painting was completed within a month.
Guernica, to me, seems to be a “Fuck You” to the seriousness of war. The big serious adult world of war. A topic that’s expected to be talked about in serious and revered terms not bombastic or absurd terms. Hatred is fine because that feeds the war machine but mocking the whole idea of war is insulting. You’re expected to choose a side. I think Guernica points out that war is an absurd joke.
The influence of Guernica on my work over the years is telling. I can see it in the Gods eyes that I’ve used in the top centre of drawings or the screaming mouths my characters have and in the stoic ways they stand.
In someways I see Picasso as the first great cartoonist. His influence on animation and cartoonists in general is immeasurable. I see Guernica’s influence on John Lennon and Banksy. For someone that great to come along and say, with his art, that it’s alright to draw badly completely breaks down the conventions of image making. Because at the end of the day drawing badly is better drawing then not drawing at all. I find it funny when I meet people who think Picasso couldn’t draw.

Pug Puppy Pilots.

Pug Puppy Pilots.

Based on the words of Mark Leggett.

A late night stroll.

A late night stroll.

The character at the top is a Robert Crumb/ Daniel Clowes style character. I think the character was originally inspired by Basil Wolvertons characters from MAD magazines my older brothers would buy. I’m so use to stylising my drawings that when it came to drawing this character I realised late that I’m meant to make him look ugly. So I gave him blood shot eyes and stained teeth but I’d do well to draw him again much more messed up and disheveled. The suit and the detail is pure Crumb. I did realise on this drawing that I don’t do enough cross hatching. Especially cross hatching in three directions. It starts to look like the detail of money. The character at the bottom looks like Ben 10 as an old man.

Miniature hulk head.

Miniature hulk head.

Hulk is one of the few marvel characters that doesn’t make me cringe. This drawing just shows the power of tria markers. It was like sculpting colour on the page. I chucked a coin down next to it to show off.

Little guy.

Little guy.

This little guy is about as cute as it gets. He has a phone in his head and he’s lost his brain. He looks a little like characters from toothpaste ads. He also looks like those minimal characters from early disney shorts or 70s Hannah Barbara. The comic strip here was a little guy ringing up his doctor on a phone coming out of his scull to ask for his brain back. The doctor, talking into his brain like its a phone, is refusing to give it back because he’s expecting a call. I don’t know if the joke makes any sense but I like it. It feels like a joke written by fraud and then edited by Salvador Dali. “I would never be apart of any communist party that would have me as a member.”

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