Recent Posts

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The hunt and the bonesmen

    The hunt and the bonesmen

      “The huntsman waited, perfectly still, hand outstretched. Not a threat. Not a command. An invitation.” From Wundersmith by Jessica Townsend Photoshop and Rebelle 3 I keep on having to […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Wundercats!

    Wundercats!

    “He leapt from her arms a yowling cub. But by the time he had landed on the ground he was a towering, terrifying beast, grown strong on Morrigan’s own uncontainable […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Nimue

    Nimue

    A Rebelle 3 sketch that I later realised fitted in well witsome of the Arthurian myth pieces I’d been working on. I felt that this made a rather intriguing Nimue, […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Riding the Brolly Rail

    Riding the Brolly Rail

    This is my first colour illustration based on The Calling of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend – the second Nevermoor novel. It’s also my first outing with Rebelle 3 – […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Winter temple

    Winter temple

    My new year’s resolution is to bring some more colour to my work. I’ve found that just adding colour to my black and white drawings really doesn’t work and so […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Morrigan Crow (and brolly)

    Morrigan Crow (and brolly)

    A quick drawing inspired by Wundersmith  – the second Morrigan Crow book by Jessica Townsend which I was given for Christmas. It’s nice to see that it’s been given a […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Merry Kittenmas!

    Merry Kittenmas!

    This was day 4 of the SCBWI-BI advent calendar competition! The rules were black and white plus one colour on the theme of Christmas carols, though I’m not sure where […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The Phoenix and the witch

    The Phoenix and the witch

    There’s a story in here somewhere… Now that I’ve finally got a new laptop, I made a point of giving digital colouring another go – this time on a pencil […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Lilith

    Lilith

    Occasionally I delve into writing – usually when I’m not trying to build an illustration portfolio – and Lilith is one of my characters, a young urban (and rather brutal) […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The Hobbit : Smaug

    The Hobbit : Smaug

    My design for the front cover of The Hobbit. I’ve re-used Smaug’s wings for Arthur’s cloak in another drawing – for this piece I wanted something that was both decorative […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The Hobbit : Gollum

    The Hobbit : Gollum

    Gollum was my choice for the rear cover design for the Hobbit, though I may shrink him down a little to allow for more blurb space! The sepia paper allowed […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The Hobbit : Beorn

    The Hobbit : Beorn

    Working in pencils (on what turned out to not be the best choice of paper), Beorn was my second choice of a subject for my Hobbit drawings that I wanted […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Into battle

    Into battle

    I’d never intended to follow the medieval romantic aesthetic of the Arthurian tales – at least in terms of costume design. Certainly arthur wouldn’t have worn plate armour. I really […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Arthur and Mordred

    Arthur and Mordred

      I’d already drawn the aftermath of Camlann but really wanted to draw a scene from the battle itself. I’ve been developing my style a bit – incorporating more stippling […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Tristan and Iseult

    Tristan and Iseult

    The classic Arthurian tragedy, though not originally part of the saga. I wanted this to be anunpleasant, tragic romance, but not brutally explicit, even though our hero is about to […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Guinevere and Lancelot

    Guinevere and Lancelot

    Certainly a bit more YA than my usual illustrations, but myths and legends are all sex ‘n’ violence. The sword symbolism and guinevere’s headdress are a combination of influences from […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Crow’s Dinner

    Crow’s Dinner

    Crow’s Dinner is a short story written for my daughter by my Dad that I’ve illustrated. It’s a rather grim tale with a lot of humour – rather like a […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Jim Hawkins and Israel Hands

    Jim Hawkins and Israel Hands

    Another memorable scene in the book and an obvious choice to illustrate – I’m not sure if this scene would be allowed in a modern children’s book, even if Jim […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Blind Pew

    Blind Pew

    Blind Pew always left an impression on me – as a villain, he’s a brilliant and quite understated character and probable the nastiest character in the book. I’ve edited this […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Treasure hunting

    Treasure hunting

    I hadn’t done a ‘framed’ piece for a while and this seemed a good opportunity seeing as I couldn’t get Flint’s skeelton marker quite right.

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Meeting Long John Silver

    Meeting Long John Silver

    An experiment in a character-driven piece rather than an action scene, as well as allowing me to play with creating distance using smoke and creating depth with height – it’s […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Abandoning the Hispaniola

    Abandoning the Hispaniola

    I bought a pad of sepia paper on a whim and decided to use it to add an extra layer to my silhouette work. Thebrown seemed to suit ‘Treasure Island’ […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The Hobbit. Journey to Rivendell

    The Hobbit. Journey to Rivendell

    I’ve just moved back to colour pencils and it’s been one of those “where have you been all my life?!” moments. When I studied art, colour pencils were never really […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Confronting the hunt

    Confronting the hunt

    The last of my Hunt of Smoke and Shadow series, this is an illustration from the closing chapters of Nevermoor and I don’t want to add spoilers here. By this […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Escaping the hunt

    Escaping the hunt

    What do you need most in an emergency? How about a giant clockwork spider powered by magic to escape in? Yep, that sounds good. This is the black and white […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The Hunt of Smoke and Shadow

    The Hunt of Smoke and Shadow

    Nevermoor : The Trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend has been a recent source of inspiration for me. The Hunt of Smoke and Shadow is a persistent threat throughout […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Hotel Deucalion

    Hotel Deucalion

    One of my illustrations inspired by Nevermoor : The trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend. I completed a couple of silhouette illustrations of the Hunt of Smoke and shadow,  […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Airship

    Airship

    I followed up the Northern Lights drawings with this digital piece. Based on the airships in the story, I wanted an excuse to see whether I could replicate the style […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Drawing Excalibur

    Drawing Excalibur

    I’ll be writing a longer blog post in regards to Undiscovered Voices, but this is the work that got me to the final. I’d stumbled into this style by chance, […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Camlann

    Camlann

    I completed two pictures from the Arthurian legends for Undiscovered Voices 2018, and this was the companion piece to my competition entry. I’d visualised the book travelling through the seasons […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The stone table breaks

    The stone table breaks

    My second Narnia piece and another painted silhouette. I’ve toned down the bright yellow in the sky and I’m glad that the white sun makes it more sunrise than sunset. […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Edmund and the White Witch

    Edmund and the White Witch

    Drawn – appropriately – over the Christmas holidays, I’d originally planned to illustrate scenes from Voyage of the Dawn Treader which is my favourite of all of the Narnia books. […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Lyra

    Lyra

    I returned to Northern Lights because it gave me an excuse to try a silhouette and cityscape combination – another experiment at backgrounds.

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Iorek Byrnison

    Iorek Byrnison

    An evening holiday drawing that earned enough good feedback to make it into my portfolio. I got some praise for the pen work at a recent review – enough to […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Toad hog!

    Toad hog!

    My second Wind in the Willows piece. As well as captuing the action, I also wanted enough static detail to expand on the story – in this case, the relics […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Ratty and Mole

    Ratty and Mole

    A departure from my fantasy work, this was one of a series inspired by the first Undiscoverd Voices 2018 brief. I wanted to have a go at a coloured silhouette […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: At the bonfire

    At the bonfire

    Another dark fantasy piece. This one was directly inspired by the Dark Souls series of videogames – itself inspired by the Fighting Fantasy books. I was particularly interested in capturing […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Brigand

    Brigand

    My monster illustrations were a trip back to my childhood spent reading Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone’s ‘Fighting Fantasy’ series. The silhouette style seemed to lend itself to the European […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Red Riding Hood sets out

    Red Riding Hood sets out

    My final Red Riding Hood piece for now. This is close in composition (though it has fewer frames) to the drawing that started my whole ‘silhouette phase’ – a one […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Railhead – The Damask Rose

    Railhead – The Damask Rose

    I’m still kicking myself that I met Philip Reeve and completely forgot to bring my copy of Railhead along to get signed. The sillhouette piece of the Damask Rose was […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Quidditch

    Quidditch

    The last of my Harry Potter images for now. This was another earlier piece that I drew to test out ideas for perspective and dealing with backgrounds – in this […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Perseus and Medusa

    Perseus and Medusa

    Intended as an interior book illustration, my intention with this was to play around with perspective using silhouettes. The scene shows Perseus watching Medusa’s reflection in his shield, standing amongst […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Expecto Patronum!

    Expecto Patronum!

    I returned to Harry Potter for an action based scene to illustrate. This one gave me the opportunity to play around properly with rendering specific areas light and dark. I […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: History of Magic

    History of Magic

    Another silhouette piece and an illustration from Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets. I chose this scene because it’s character based rather than an action piece and I wanted […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Theseus and the Minotaur

    Theseus and the Minotaur

    Preparing for the 2017/18 Undiscovered Voices Competition (yes, I’m giving it another go), I decided to move my work in a new direction and decided that silhouettes were a good […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Going climbing

    Going climbing

    As well as my myths and legends illustrations, I also had a go at drawing some other children’s book scenes with brush and black and white inks. This one was […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Baba Yaga

    Baba Yaga

    One of the last of my Inktober works, I used my ‘Once upon a time’ poster as the jumping off point as I liked the rendering of Baba Yaga on […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Little Red and the wolf

    Little Red and the wolf

    My final Red Riding Hood ink drawing for the time being. This was my experiment with coloured inks that I’d forgotten I’d bought and that had been hidden away in […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: Red Riding Hood Revisited

    Red Riding Hood Revisited

    I revisited the Red Riding Hood story after completing my previous pen and ink drawing from the story. I much prefer the way that the softer brush work lends itself […]

  • Thumbnail for the post titled: The soggy bad wolf

    The soggy bad wolf

    I was inspired by ‘Inktober’ last year, and started to work on a series of brush and ink illustrations. This was one of my ‘unconventional wolf’ designs – I quite […]