Characters from a personal project.
I have been drawing every day – honest! I’ve just not been posting…
Here’s the last part of the tea-time epic.
I’ve been out in the garden talking to the tomato plants and observing the local cat politics. I may have mentioned this before but my neighbourhood has an embarrassment of feline riches, and my next-door neighbours have (amongst other animals) NINE cats – a fact I find so astonishing I keep repeating it (NINE cats!).
Here’s a few of them:
The Great Darkness belongs to my upstairs neighbour and is very fat, elderly and possibly the most bad-tempered cat I’ve ever encountered. Do not approach without a big stick.
The Daft Ginger One is the youngest of The Nine and generally harmless. It finds snails totally fascinating.
Bob is the only one of The Nine whose real name I know and is the only friendly one, which is a pity as he’s a complete fleabag. I also suspect mental issues. Will fight with all-comers.
Until I saw The Evil Stripy One I hadn’t realised cats could frown. Possibly the most dangerous of The Nine, though the ‘Incident with the Hose’ probably didn’t help.
Bob’s mate lives a few doors down and is a total ‘fraidy-cat. For some reason Bob tolerates him so they hang out a lot. He reminds me of the cat from Kiki’s Delivery Service so I probably should have drawn him with a bead of manga-sweat or something.
The Ginger One From Across the Street is a player in the politics of the neighbourhood. He occasionally (foolishly) ventures across into the territory of The Nine but soons learns the better of it.
Also I popped into London Underground Comics‘ LUC176 event on Saturday. Ellen Lindner kindly sold some of my comics from her table (you should check out her masterpiece Undertow) so I could go and have a sneaky beer outside with my friend Sam. It was certainly a great venue – I hope the event was a success for everyone.
I didn’t have time to draw a ‘tea time’ pic today but tomorrow I’m all set to get back on the case. Here I am in my ‘ready-for-action’ artist’s gear (hairy legs, model’s own).
Me aged 100. I expect I’ll still be at war with the local cat population. This is for a competition set up by Phil McAndrew.
Following on yesterday’s post, I might as well continue with this character. I feel some bad poetry coming on.
Is it ‘with whom’ of ‘with who’? I can never remember.
I’m nailing my (new) creed to the church door here. I’ve never had the urge to draw constantly – I can go weeks without drawing and I don’t miss it one bit. I’ve loads of nice expensive sketchbooks which just felt too beautifully pristine to fill with my silly scribblings (my drawing paper of choice is Tesco value copier paper) and so sit empty, yellowing and neglected.
But I’ve probably not done myself any favours. Development cannot come without practice.
So here goes.
An artist’s reconstruction of events.
Scott C is one of my favourite cartoonists – quirkily humorous characters in bizarre settings, all drawn with a lovely thick inky line and splashes of paint. He’s currently over in the UK for a show with Jim Mahfood at the London Miles Gallery in Notting Hill. Sarah McIntyre and I went along for the opening night and got a chance to talk to Scott and meet some other interesting and nice people too. We bought Scott’s book which he most graciously drew in for us whilst Sarah took pictures. I’ve interpreted the scene in a Scott C style above (Treehead is a character of Scott’s) – for the photos take a look at Sarah’s blog.
A group of local illustrators got together for some life drawing practice yesterday. Viviane Schwarz was the hostess and made some very fine jumbo chocolate chip cookies to feed the inspiration and Sarah McIntyre, Gary Northfield and myself made up a quartet of models/artists. It’s hard to sit still when you can smell freshly-baked cookies, I can tell you. I’m not proud enough of my drawing efforts to post them here but for some photos take a look at Sarah’s blog.
Gillian Anderson has been starring in a new version of Ibsen’s A Doll’s House at the Donmar Warehouse with Christopher Eccleston, Toby Stephens, Anton Lesser and Tara Fitzgerald. Tickets are completely sold out, but if you are prepared to queue from 8am they are selling a small number of cheapo standby tickets.
As a member of the comics jet-set I obviously don’t get out of bed before 9:30am, so I had one of my people queue for me. And it was worthwhile kicking them from out from their box under the stairs into the cold early morning air, as it was quite a spectacular production.
The critics aren’t very happy in that the original story has been rewritten somewhat, but as I’d never seen the original that was fine by me and nobody cares anyway as we were all there to see Gillian Anderson. Quite possibly the most beautiful woman in the world – all big, glistening eyes and pouty, quivering lips like a character from some romantic manga (but with a nose). Graceful, floaty loveliness …. sigh. And she can certainly act, too. Christopher Eccleston was also excellent doing his fiery, jug-eared Northerner thing (if OK! are reading this we saw him in a bar a couple of nights ago, very drunk indeed) and the rest of the cast were also brilliant.
Although I’d love to see a more faithful adaptation of this play to compare, I’d be quite happy with this production: witty, topical and very powerful.
The Rag-and-Bone man is a character that I thought had long disappeared in these days of local government-sponsored recycling and internet swap shops.
As a child I would run into the street when I heard the distinctive call: “Rag and bone” had merged into “RAAAABOOOOONNNNNE!”, a long plaintive cry that made me think of a lonely, lost animal calling for the herd. Our local man had a long open-backed lorry which he would drive at a majestically slow pace down the road, like a carnival float that had been mugged and robbed of its finery. His mate would sit on the back amongst the broken down washing machines and lead piping, and haul on any junk that householders dragged out for him. If children gave him pieces of scrap metal he would give them a balloon in return.
We later moved house to an area where Rag-and-Bone men were Not The Kind Of People We Want Around Here, but I find I now live in a neighbourhood down-market enough to have its own regular Rag-and-Bone man. True, instead of the lorry he pushes a purloined supermarket trolley, so he could just be an upwardly mobile tramp. But when I heard him give out the call, obviously long-practised and expertly executed, a shiver of recollection went down my spine and I knew he was the genuine article.