Saturday 14 February 2009

Baron Kazam takes off

Here's my latest HUZZAH!! (above and below). It's really rattling along now. Faz Choudhury is next up, can't wait to see how he follows this! I'll be away for a week, so it'll be fascinating to see where HUZZAH!! is by the time I get back. 

As requested by Paul Harrison Davies  here's a 'how it's done in 3 easy steps' thing. Prior to the first stage I would have done a thumbnail on a piece of paper - no idea where that went, I'm surrounded by mountains of paper as I'm in the middle of a couple of projects.

I always paste the plate that proceeds mine onto my page (in this case Dave Taylor's revelation of a baby in a sphere inside Xog)) so I'm working as if it is part of the same page.

Until I come up with a better solution I'm inking in Photoshop. My Huzzah plate on page 7 was done with pen and paper, but all the rest have been done like this. It's handy when you change your mind as often as I do

I wanted to use limited flat colours but also wanted to stick to Dave's palette to keep the continuity on the page, so I stopped the line work and messed about until I came up with this Mondrian looking colour layout. Also the muted colour and the dreamy motion of the page worked as a great contrast to the dazzling colours in the next panel (top of this post) where the Baron hurtles in the air clinging to the remote womb. Actually I did that big magenta flying baron image first and tried to work towards it. I'm really not the most methodical of people.

Tuesday 10 February 2009

Michael Charlton Exhibition

Avid followers of this blog (yes, both of you) will remember the tribute I wrote for Michael Charlton, who died last year; this week his his son William has contacted me to let me know about a retrospective exhibition of Mike's work to be held at Salisbury Art Centre from Feb 25th to march 14th. I urge anyone who can make it to get over to Salisbury and see Mike's illustrations. I realise that for some people this is impossible so here are a couple more examples so you can see what you're missing.

The Christmas box

The Xmas box is a real favourite of mine. Mike often saved his most adventurous experiments for his own projects and his annual project was to create an original approach to the christmas card. This is a 1950s experiment where instead of a card Mike produced a box with himself, his first wife Irene and children, Nick, Ruth, William and Cathy given a side each. I believe it's print from a lino cut. The mind boggles at the amount of work that must have gone into making these. And yet he's ended up with something that has a bold design alongside Mike's lightness of touch and the warmth of his humour. Great isn't it.

Here are some more:

The Toff-o-lux chewer

The man himself with trademark pipe and pencil

This is typical of his later work for Bodley Head and Hodder and Stoughton

and this is just fab!

Thursday 5 February 2009

The Old Man's Back Again

Baron Kazam

The Old Man's Back Again has become a sort of theme tune for Baron Kazam, I end up humming it every time I see him. It's one of those booming, mythic, Sergio Leone landscape sounding Scott Walker songs (I could just have easily chosen The Seventh Seal by Scott Walker, I guess. That one even features a knight). 

From page one of The Inverted Coma

Always annoying when folk don't update their blogs and I'm getting a bit slack myself just now thanks to my mountainous workload. So, with that in mind, and the fact I'm going to be flat out busy for another fortnight before I go on holiday, I thought I'd do some bumper blogging! The indian pic is a panel from the Future Shock type thing that I've been kicking around for the past couple of years. Thought I ought to finish it and send it over to Tharg really. 

Below is one of those "how to in 3 quick easy steps" things. I couldn't resist jumping in and nudging the HUZZAH story on the other day and managed to knock out three panels in double quick time.

Jedi Academy

Doing HUZZAH has reminded me of my last foray into Space Opera when I produced 4 issues of Jedi Academy for Lucasfilms and Deagostini a few years back. Sadly the project went tits thanks to packaging issues and inflatable chairs that didn't inflate (merchadise) and so it only had trial distribution (which is where the publishers choose a few selected cities for a dry run). It was aimed at the kiddies (the younglings!?!?) and followed the jolly japes of four padwans as they go through their jedi training.
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