Thursday, July 25, 2013

Robert Irwin Dinosaur Hunter

A few of the latter books.

A bit dark unfortunately.
My monitor has almost had it-you can see the afterimages/burn in badly- I hope the new computer with new monitor and new cintiq will usher in a new era of better colour.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Slow start

Spent yesterday trying to think of thumbnails for Wombat 4 and an educational book (- that I am not sure I'm doing yet- the story is very nice though-sort of had to do some thumbnails to see how much work it might be if I did it)
This morning I did a couple of dinosaurs- in a sort of Wombat style- I'd like to find a style like me but also with the grit and grain and colour of Brian Wildsmith. I'd probably have make custom  brushes or have scanned textures- or actually do real artwork not digital.
Any little bit of dinosaur noodling.
I'd like to find a way to make them suitable for young kids but still actually bear resemblance to actual dinosaurs.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Worrying Will and Xylophone Xavier

Are here- well a few weeks back....which means they are most definitely here.
As I said before- Will is actually fairly funny for a depressed, anxiety ridden wombat.
Good for kids who are a bit anxious I think.
And Xavier is clearly the best book
about a Xylophone collecting Swordfish that's ever been attempted.

(Books aren't actually grubby when you buy them BTW.)

Wombats Birthday Suprise

Is out in October. Apparently.
Here is an image to celebrate.
In other news- I am buying a new computer and a new cintiq. I will be freshly empoverished but I will be the captain of my fate.

A Sculpey Rod for my back

Or  "The man from Unco"

Decided to make a dragon out of sculpey- at son Oscars insistence.
Oh boy, ...
sculpey does not grip metal armature.
Using alfoil to bulk things out- sculpey grips this but too hard to control the volume you create when you scrunch it.
Sculpey does not grip or stick to baked sculpey- very annoying- had thought to pre make teeth and claws - might have to glue them on.

Made whole thing way way too big for oven!!!!- (will have to bend tail/cut section out of sculpey so it will bend and maybe just fit).
Did not put enough wire in arms/wings-to -be.

Its been such an effort trying to do the initial coverage of sculpey let alone refining it.
So still looks like its made out of pastry- actually a shame because I'd like a Heston style edible dragon- but sculpey is annoying how its so hard to moosh it so its workable- then its so soft its like modelling with pastry....oh well....we'll stick wings on it, cover it with spikes...and see.
Trouble is- I don't have much patience.

Yum-Yum Yoshi

Some images.

Zippy Zoe

Some Zoe images from the Z Little Mates

The odd couple

Horned guy look a bit like like guy from Shadow king- just a 15 min thing.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Will get onto posting stuff

Was desperately trying to make the most of the remains of school holidays with my boys. Followed by 2 days of not drawing /working. Which is hard....I am not very  good at relaxing-keeping thinking of stuff I want /need to do
ie ....looked through sketchbooks and theres a ton of stuff needs to be realised- or could be taken and coloured/polished.

Will try to post stuff as advertised.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


Well as of yesterday I've done it- finished the last Little Mates book.
Packed up- and headed home.
Still slightly in fear of an email asking for changes to the pages- but I figure its too late for that- it has to be for print in a few days.
Hopefully however , when they are released as a set of 26 in November it will all sell alright.
At least we know there won't be anything similar - you'd be absolutely crazy to try.
Actually advance copies of X and W arrived just before I finished- which was good because I was flagging pretty badly so close to the finish. W loooks quite funny- a little dark- but I think they always make adjustments to the print and fix that sort of thing for the proper run of books. X seems a little rough in backgrounds- but theres a fair bit of extra detail - so hopefully that cancels out the roughness of the backgrounds. X wasn't very easy to make sense of illustrationwise- so I think I made a good attempt. Some the expressions on the fish in X are pretty funny too-if I do say so myself.
Odd to look at things that you yourself must have done, but they seem unfamiliar- like someone else did them.
Anyway... the books arriving spurred me on.

I'll probably post some images of y and z shortly and the W and X books.
The third wombat book comes out in October- so hopefully that goes well- I'm looking forward to seeing the actual advance copies of the book.

So now what?
Look at the long list of things I wanted to do all of that 3.5 years thats past but couldn't.
Possibly still have to get a real job as I thought I would have to a year ago.
The trouble is- it pays so little to do a book you can't keep doing it even if you'd like to. The only future hope is if I got some overseas deal where the market- and therefore the advance is bigger.
ie- In six months I have done 13.5 books-but still can't make ends meet.
In a way- the only hope of this is for me to do my own book- and so this is the plan.
Also planning to do something graphic novelish or comic-ish.
Which seems a bit counter intuitive- but its sort of double or nothing.
(Definitely nothing moneywise in the short term. )
If I can't get someone else to give me the things I'd like to work on- well don't wait- work on it yourself.
I guess also witnessing the decline of my parents has given me a 'bucket list' mentality at the moment.

The only thing that makes it seem at all feasible to continue is the  teaser of CAL money I received this year. I sort of view the CAL money as a kind of disability pension for australian creatives- because clearly you'd have to have a disabling mental condition to continue to attempt to be an illustrator working in  childrens books in australia.

Monday, July 1, 2013


Now working on Little Mates Z.
 I do wish drawing was like ditch digging sometimes- its so hard to draw when you don't care- whereas digging a ditch you just swing the shovel.