Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Love Is A Thief.

My record for different versions of a book cover is 47 (I’ll write about that another time) but this one came pretty close. I thought I’d post it as actually, none of the 20+ covers I created were ever used. I don’t know what cover this book eventually went out with.

Here’s a small sample of some of the work that goes into a book cover. There were a lot of these I liked, particularly the paper cut ones.

Sometimes you crack it first time…sometimes you don’t!


I'm proud as punch to share these illustrations by studio helper, occasional bun-maker and Friend To The World of Inkymole Graham Robson, who's recently had his second commission published in Computer Arts Magazine.

You can read his blog here, but here are his illustrations. Crayons aloft in celebration!

Monday, February 24, 2014

Draw summat will ya?

Some of my finest moments were on Draw Something. Just look at my vomit and camp butcher!

Playing with ‘professionals' and amateurs alike, hours were spent tongue-out drawing something mind glowingly complicated for someone the other side of the planet who was desperately trying to guess what it was. It’s amazing what you can do with a forefinger and determination.

I miss it.

If you fancy a game, I’m ‘inkymole'. I know, just like my Draw Something creations - awesomely imaginative.

Thursday, February 13, 2014


Well this is out then!

Ink Slingers (Walker Books' Tumblr site) have done a cover reveal on this book by Rae Earl, who wrote My Mad Fat Diary, the telly series that’s on at the minute. A follow up to ‘OMG Is This Actually my Life?’


These guys didn’t make it to the cover - a Santa vajazzle that’s in the story along with a cewt newt, some ugly onesies and a koala bear. Check out too the various versions that were produced en route to the final! Lots of aerosol action in the garden.

Monday, February 03, 2014

Night Night NyQuil...zzzzz

This was my first 'social networking' ad campaign - apart from a tiny thing I did for Hershey's chocolate a while back, this represented my first proper series of images created solely for use by a company on Facebook. It was for Vicks USA, best known for their chest-rub over here (forever associated with childhood coughs and colds!) but also makers of sleeping aid Nyquil, and new product ZzzQuil.

They look simple but were actually really tricky to do, with a lot of tweaking and to-ing and fro-ing I created a hand-soaked purple ink background for the chalk work. Chalk's still a really popular look right now, and I had to dial back a bit on the sophistication on these. so they were 'viewer-friendly' and not too 'designed'.

The fourth was created for Christmas, 'And To All A Good Night' - ever a great line, plus I got to draw a thoroughly seasonal Father Christmas and reindeers!

See the ads in use here. The agency was Publicis Kaplan Thaler in New York.

Here are the final ads plus a couple of rejected versions created along the way:

Saturday, February 01, 2014

What Happened Tomorrow After We Drew It.

As a follow-up to the story of Central Illustration’s birthday celebrations with AMV BBDO and the Museum of Childhood, here’s what happened next!

You may remember this Autumn event involved me and other CIA artists drawing live at the behest of assorted children, whose visions of The Future had been fed to us a few days before, but which were art directed live on the day. Mine was called Rex and he was four. Alongside that, other CIA artists had created pre-made illustrations for their 'future visions’, which decorated the walls of the Museum at the same time. You can read the original blog here:

Well, contrary to what was anticipated (a next-day takedown), all of the live-drawn start remained in situ and is still there now for people to walk past and engage with. They were also turned into posters placed around various media sites across London, with no list of whose work went where - all we knew was that our work was out there somewhere! I put a Facebook call out however for any city-based chums to keep their eyeballs open, and astonishingly, it was found within the hour AND round the corner from our mate’s house in East Dulwich! Here it is:

Following that, CIA made a calendar of all of the images and posted it out to all the artists and clients and parents of the participating children:

I’m November.

And Creative Review made the event the subject of their December Monograph, the little supplements that go out to all subscribers to the print mag. It featured every piece of artwork, and since CR is harder to get into than Hogwarts, this represents a RESULT.

(And that is the sultry paw of Ben, who organised the whole thing with Charlotte at CIA. The same hand is also rather good at baking, it is rumoured).


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