Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Obligatory shit halloween drawing

Sketch blog etiquette dictates a necessity for a wacky happy halloween drawing on this day.

I did this a few days ago. What's really scary is my apparent mid-nineties Britpop reference frame.
Actually, there's another rule that says you should celebrate your blog's first birthday by drawing a cute cupcake with a candle in it, but I missed that. It was on October 11th.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Wham, Bam... depressing.

A long time ago, it seems, I entered the Observer/Random House graphic short story competition. I'm pretty much relying on winning some such competition, some illustratorial X-Factor, to springboard me into career success. (And I don't mean just beating a bunch of nine year olds in a colouring in competition, as in my previous post). So I put a lot of time into writing and drawing this, and was then bitterly disappointed when I didn't win.
Looking at the winners and other entrants though (conveniently collected here) I'm less upset. Most of them are stylish and bleak and have a single figure word count. That's not really what mine is about. Mine's more Beano than 2000AD, or whatever it is serious graphic story-tellers are into. Mine's a comic, and I think that's what I prefer.
There are definitely far too many words in there though. I need to save those up for my novel. In Crumb, the Terry Zwigoff documentary about Robert Crumb, you meet his older brother Charles who is psychotic. You are shown Charles' cartoon strips he made as was growing up and see that as he gets older, and more mental, his panels become more and more crammed with words. The characters have to hunch down in the bottom until eventually the pages are just panels filled with tiny words. That's what mine reminds me of. That, but with more shit puns.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


I watched Knocked Up in the cinema and didn't laugh once whilst the rest of the audience fell about. Maybe I was bitter because everyone I was with booked seats in the middle at the front, and I had to sit on my own in the back corner. In a subsequent bid to get onto the Judd Apatow bandwagon, unsettled by my differences of opinion with the side of the bus and the internets, I downloaded 40 year old virgin and here we are watching it. It's still pretty dire though.

Now Ratatouille, there's a film...

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


The big news sensations of the modern age, the scandals, the scoops, the scourges, break right here in the blogosphere. It takes weeks if not months later for the real world, for the print media, stumbling from the cave and blinded by technology's bright lights, to catch up. It was true with Britney's transmogrification into a fat bald bad mother, and it's true here.
You may remember, several months ago this post of mine of some shameful Lily Allen fan art which led to me being mocked and ridiculed in pubs, on facebook and behind my back. Now skip forward a few months and what's that splashed across page 2 of London's favourite free paper? Just next to none less than Stella McCartney? Yes, it's my picture of Lily.

In the intervening weeks, you see, I saw advertised a poster design competition themed 'My Hero' being run by MTV and Penguin books, all to promote the new yoof-orientated Nick Hornby novel Slam. I casually sent in my picture, and it won.
A few weeks later Charlotte and I went to the glamorous Slam book launch at the Design Museum on the South Bank, where the shortlisted posters where all up on display. It easily surpassed the time I saw Adam Buxton in Nine Elms Sainsburys as the most glamorous occasion of my life. There were hors douvres. There was a bar with no cash till. There was John O'Farrell. Nick Hornby made a really funny speech and then announced the winner. I looked surprised, but I'd actually been meticulously pre-briefed. I skipped up to the front and Nick, as I now call him, gave me a new iPod (a nano, not a touch) a child's t-shirt and a hug and the Penguin MD handed me a bottle of M&S Champagne.
The next day my entry was in thelondonpaper, which pretty much everyone I know evidently reads as I was bombarded with literally three or four text messages of congratulations.
The poster is to be on display for all of November in the Design Museum. They asked me to write a few words about why Lily is my hero for the display, but apparently my submission- a cloying bid to scrape back some street-cred by mocking her- was not serious enough. Here it is:
"When I was younger, I didn't have posters of my heroes up on my wall. Lily Allen, however- despite looking, sounding and probably smelling like a chav- is a pop star I wouldn 't mind being in my bedroom. She's pop royalty and yet I feel I have a lot in common with her: we both made most of our friends on MySpace, we both like the Specials and both are pretty rubbish at playing the guitar. Most of my friends seem to think she's fairly talentless and has only been as succesful as she has because of her rock 'n' roll dad, but whilst I accept these are valid points I think she's alright, still. Plus, she's a lot easier to draws than Amy Winehouse."

So there you go.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Louis Theroux

On Sunday we watched Louis Theroux getting cosmetic surgery on television. Charlotte had to shield her eyes from all the cutting and bleeding and sucking and drilling, but I have had medical training and so was fine.