I love books. I especially like handmade books and small press publications. All the recent goulish Halloween illustration posts made me go dig out a little book I bought recently: - The Funeral by writer/illustrator Barnaby Richards.
"The Funeral pictures the paradoxical events surrounding the disappearance of a loved one". Its published by Atlantic Press and is a complete steal at just £4.
I don't know much about Barnaby other than he is a recent graduate of MA Illustration course at Falmouth. He doesn't seem to have a website yet which is a real shame.
I also have a few of his other books which I picked up in Magma. - 20 Artistic Things, 20 Enchanting things and 20 Scary Things. Each one is a collection of line drawings - one per page- on the title theme. There is something both dark and charming about these collection of simple drawings that I really enjoy. I particularly like the quiet expressions on his characters. I always get a kick out of looking at them.
From 20 Artistic Things - Apologies for the poor quality scans
email: barnabyrichards @ hotmail.com
I've done a little book making myself but it very hard to find the time. It's very much something I'd like to do more of in the future. I also took a screenprinting course this summer so am hoping in the new year to be able to my new skills into practice!
In the meantime, It's nice just to enjoy the labour of loves of other artists. I'm also a fan of Andy Smith's screen printed books and the great stuff Tom Gauld* and Simone Lia publish under Cabanon Press.
While my american cousins are all making a big thing about Halloween, I thought I'd do a quick illustration to acknowledge one of the UK's superior holiday events : Bonfire Night.
For those not familiar with the holiday, it's when we celebrate how Guy Fawkes and bunch of catholics got caught trying to blow up parliament and protestant King James I in 1605.
The day is now celebrated by bonfires and firework events through out the country. In a slightly worrying Wicker Man style twist, kids are encouraged to build their own scarecrow-like 'GUY', then scrounge money off the general public (usually chanting 'penny for the guy' in the street) before chucking him on the bonfire at the end of the night. Nothing worrying at all there.
Last year, some boys came to my door with a rather life-like guy in a wheelbarrow. I was suckered into giving them some cash only to then watch the carefully crafted 'guy' get up, take his mask and gloves off and walk off. Kids eh?
It's too close to Halloween for my liking, and being a miserable sod, I'll just have to sit in the dark with curtains closed and the lights off all this week...
Remember, remember, the 5th of November Gunpowder Treason and plot ; I know of no reason why the Gunpowder Treason Should ever be forgot.
Guy Fawkes, Guy Fawkes, 'Twas his intent. To blow up the King and the Parliament. Three score barrels of powder below. Poor old England to overthrow. By God's providence he was catch'd, With a dark lantern and burning match
Holloa boys, Holloa boys, let the bells ring Holloa boys, Holloa boys, God save the King!
Hip hip Hoorah ! Hip hip Hoorah !
A penny loaf to feed ol'Pope, A farthing cheese to choke him. A pint of beer to rinse it down, A faggot of sticks to burn him. Burn him in a tub of tar,' Burn him like a blazing star. Burn his body from his head, Then we'll say: ol'Pope is dead.
The Pagoda at the Victoria & Albert Museum, its got some great little characters peeping out the windows.
Following the monkey madness thats going on round here... I have quite a few money related illustrations (who doesn't love drawing monkeys??) but when looking through my folders I found an 'early' illustration of mine.
One of the first steps I took when I decided to make the career change from theatre to illustration was to enroll in a part-time course at Chelsea School of Art. Early on we made a class trip to one of my favourite museums in London: The V&A . We were asked to sketch an object on display and then create a piece of artwork influenced by it...
The biggest version I could find of it on my computer. oh dear!
I sketched some monkey carvings and this pagoda from the China Collection and cobbled together the illustration shown here
This was one of the first things I did at on the course and it was also the first illustration I created in Photoshop.
The smaller prototype - I wasn't very organised about getting proper photos taken of the finished piece!
I ended up making a sort of 3-D sculture-ish thing out of it (See shoddy prototype photo). It was then selected for the Museum's 'Inspired By' exhibition later that year. Even though I didn't win any prizes or anything, I still got a bit of a kick about seeing my work in a display case at the V&A.
It's funny to see how much my digital work has changed as I've got more comfortable working on the computer!