On the 8th of July, I’ll be at Give Up Your Day Job at The Junction on Mutley Plain! Give Up.. is an alternative/punk/DIY event where you can get a drink, a doughnut, and find cool artwork, clothes, books, badges, zines, and more, created by independent artists and makers including The Sad Ghost Club, Steph Parnell, Think Like Bas, Il Pleut, and Benjamin Wright! At my table I will have hand drawn greetings cards, each one is totally unique, so for the price of a regular mass produced card you can get something noone else has. I make cards featuring completely original characters as well as fan art cards in my own style.
Some of my ‘little dudes’ cards, each one is a unique illustration of an original character
I’ll also be offering hand drawn cards on commission if you want something specific and personal, including portrait and fan cards. If you don’t have my zines yet I will also have those there, full of my illustrations and comics, alongside prints and badges – and I’ll have my badgemaker there so you can even make your own badge if you like!
Sombra postcard, Chloe card and a commissioned portrait card
This weekend is Small Press Day so celebrate on Sunday and come down to Give Up Your Day Job, 12-5pm at The Junction, Mutley Plain, and support your local artists and small press comic creators and zinesters!
At 6am our coach was in front of the old Plymouth museum. I found a seat next to a friend and chatted while we waited for the rest of the group. It was my first time on a coach and it had soft seats with buttons to make them recline and red curtains in the windows. We set off at 6:20 and me and my friends were excited but tired from being awake so early. A lot of my group slept for the first part of the journey but after we stopped at Exeter services to stretch our legs and get some snacks almost everyone stayed awake. We had another five hours or so of travel ahead so we talked about visits that each of us had made to London in the past and told each other funny anecdotes from our lives. I did some sketching trying out different character faces but my lines were a bit wobbly from the movement of the coach, and I kept dropping my rubber down the side of the seat.
As we travelled through London we took pictures out of the coach windows and pointed out buildings we recognized, like the Gherkin, MI6 and Big Ben. Our coach dropped us off close to Central Saint Martins and we walked the rest of the way. Central Saint Martins is a huge building and we noticed that the inside room was so vast that it was almost as cold as it was outside. We were given stickers to wear to show we were from Plymouth College of Art and ‘perylene maroon’ goodie bags from Cass Art. In my bag I had an A4 sketchbook, some pencils, a bottle of water and some snacks. We sat down to have some lunch while our student ambassador Ben played on a piano and we waited for some of the other groups from around the country to arrive.
After lunch we looked at all the other self-portraits from the different groups and a photographer took a picture of us in front of our own portraits. It felt amazing to have my self-portrait up in a gallery with other young artists’ work. There was a lot of variety in the style and techniques used in the portraits I saw. One group, from the Victoria and Albert museum, had used concertinaed paper with two portraits drawn on it so the one that you could see depended on the angle you viewed it from. Some of these were quite creepy to look at because one side would be a regular portrait and the other side looked strange or demonic. Other groups had worked with print, photography, pencils or collage. My group used acrylic paint on pieces of wood and I wrote about that process in a previous blog post.
After looking around the portraits all the groups were shown into a large room for a series of talks. We learned that even though there were hundreds of us there that day we only represented a third of the total members nationally! Some groups were so far away they couldn’t make it together and so one family had come alone. Those of us from Plymouth spent at least 12 hours travelling to London and back that day! We heard from Cecilia Weckstrom who told us that when she was younger she didn’t know what she wanted to study, and got an apprenticeship with a children’s book company and learned about graphic design, and now she works for Lego and is a Trustee for the NA&DSC. The director of the Saturday Club Trust, Sorrel Hershberg, and Jeremy Till, the Head of Central Saint Martins, both gave us information about the Saturday Arts Club and thanked the founders Sir John Sorrell and Lady Frances Sorrell.
When we came out of the room, ginormous pieces of paper were rolled out for us all to draw on and there were people holding big buckets with tons of crayons, pens and pencils for us to use. My group didn’t have a lot of time before we got back on the coach but we sat on the floor for a short while and I drew my friend and myself. There were a lot of cool doodles and there were tons of kids drawing each other. After that I bought myself a big red NatSatClub hoodie and we got back on the coach for the next part of our trip.
All the groups headed to different venues around London and mine headed to the Tate Britain gallery. We got a short tour around a few of the pieces of art on display and our tour guide and our tutor Kate encouraged us to talk about and critique what we saw. We studied each piece for a few minutes and tried to think of single words that described how we felt or the impression we got from the artworks. One piece that I found intriguing was Fiona Banner’s Break Pointwhich is a huge canvas painted white with red marker pen text describing a chase scene from the movie Point Break. The shade of red that she used and the way the text got closer together towards the bottom of the piece made me tense and it seemed very aggressive. I haven’t seen the film, but I hope to soon so I can see what happens next!
We moved on to the Turner Prize 2016 Exhibition. The Turner Prize is a contemporary art award given every year to a British artist chosen from four nominees. My favourite piece on display was an installation by Michael Dean which was a pile of pennies equal to one penny less than its title,United Kingdom poverty line for two adults and two children: twenty thousand four hundred and thirty six pounds sterling as published on 1st September 2016. Me and my friends thought it would be fun to roll around in it all. It sounds like a lot of money but it didn’t feel like it when I saw it as a pile of pennies.There was an enourmous gold sculpture of a butt by Anthea Hamilton called ‘Project For Door (After Gaetano Pesce)’ and people were laughing and taking silly photos near it. I thought it was absurd in a funny way. Visitors were invited to write their thoughts about the exhibition and pin them up outside the gallery, so we did that and then left to make the long trip home.
On the journey home I took some more pictures of London lit up at night, and everyone was wide awake and in the back someone was playing music. It was such an exciting day, me and my friends ended up having laughing fits for ages for no real reason. We stopped at services to get dinner, but we panicked because we thought we had taken too long but it turned out we were back before most of the group. We settled down eventually and it got quieter and some people fell asleep, and I carried on working in my sketchbook. We got back to Plymouth at around 11 and I was exhausted. The whole day was absolutely amazing and I’m really thankful to have had the opportunity to be part of it.
I have been coming up with ideas for comics recently. The first one is a fan comic about Monster Hunter and features me and my brother. The sketch above are characters based on us with neutral faces. I’m going to draw them from different angles with different expressions this week.
This is a page of my initial idea. I like to read manga (One Punch Man, My Hero Academia, Monster Hunter Flash Hunter, Gon, Fairy Tail..) and comics and comic strips like Peanuts, Garfield, Bone, and Calvin and Hobbes. I started writing my own comic strips a few years ago.
A lot of my comics are based on video games I like. This one is based on Journey which I played last week (free via Playstation Plus!).
Back in 2014 me and my brother created the first issue of our zine MACS (Magazine of Awesome Cool Stuff..)
The zine included several of my comic strips at the time including ‘The Misadventures of Link’ which followed Link from the Zelda games.
It also featured my comic strip The Odd Days which was inspired by the asdf movies on Youtube by Tom Ska . My versions really didn’t make a lot of sense.
Me and J have plans to FINALLY get round to our second issue very soon.. until then you can enjoy this page from issue 1 by Jenson!
All that on top of my usual weekly activities.. so I haven’t had time to update my blog with daily sketches or anything else! This post is a giant catch up of all my favourite sketches that I’ve done in the past fortnight.
The man behind PlymouthCubed (Plymouth in Minecraft!), Neil, liked my watercolour inspired by his project so much he took this excellent screenshot of my art inside his! That’s Minecraft Neil in the cool t-shirt stood by my painting on Minecraft Plymouth Hoe! Don’t know who that is in the distance, staring dramatically out to sea.. I can’t wait to walk around inside this myself!
Earlier this year my brother J was invited to give a presentation with his Code Club at a DATA Play event. DATA Play is all about the local tech community and others looking at data provided by the Council and finding cool and interesting ways to use it. J talked about what he does at Code Club, making games on Scratch and collaborating with other young games makers (I’ve also been making my own games).
When he got home we talked about it and had some ideas of our own for using local data and we entered them into a competition run by Plymouth City Council. We were one of the winners with our Plymouth Outdoors idea, and me and my brother are getting to work with a local tech company Elixel and see if we can make our idea into an app to help people find local sports facilities. We use public sports facilities quite a lot but it can be difficult to find them as they aren’t always on maps.
Since then we’ve been to more DATA Play events and to two Digital Futures days organised by RIO. One amazing project we’ve seen is PlymouthCubed by @dyrms86. Neil has been building Plymouth in Minecraft and he has made some brilliant videos which have inspired my newest watercolour painting at the top of this post. We also saw a dinosaur that roared every time someone tweeted about the event which was put together by @neilcford who also gave me and J a Shrimp Kit to play with. We have also met Lucy (@jargonautical) who gave a great demonstration, she had built a virtual Pi with a sense hat in Minecraft from coloured wool, and when we clicked on different parts of the wool they changed colour to match LEDs on the connected real Pi sense hat! We have a Pi here and want to do this project at home soon.
The most recent Digital Futures event was last Friday , and J was on the flyer! We participated in different workshops and met some new people. One person I met was Reece from Our Way Tech, who are a team of young people who are consultants to tech companies on finding new digital ways to do things involving young people, and who also won a DATA play competition with their pop-up past project. I’m hoping to meet Reece and his team in the summer and maybe collaborate on something.
Me and J were also introduced into some new ways of making games by @Ohcarson from Sizeable Games and Jack from So Good Studios. Oliver helped us learn how to use PICO-8 and Jack was really friendly, talking to us about his team’s new game Tap Tournament. Tap Tournament is a multiplayer game, four players each control a knight and you battle by swinging your sword to bat around a ball at each other. It’s very fun and the levels aren’t that long so you don’t get bored. Jack said that in the future he hopes to be collaborating with Emma Baker whose work I loved at the Graduate show recently, and I hope to meet them both and maybe get involved myself 🙂
That’s everything so far and i’ll be keeping this blog updated as we go to more events and see what happens with Plymouth Outdoors and any other projects I get involved in!
This is a sketch of the Japanese singer Kyary Pamyu Pamyu in her second outfit for the song Tsukema Tsukeru (http://youtu.be/NLy4cvRx7Vc). I had been meaning to draw this for a while. I also added the first two lines of lyrics in Hiragana. :3