Hello!

Cartoonist, comic stripper, and book illustrator. Appears every fortnight in Private Eye (Forgotten Moments in Music History), has also worked for Penguin, Random House, The Times, Spectator, Reader's Digest, The Beano (Billy Whizz) and The Dandy, to name but a few.
Please use the tabs above to browse my portfolio. Home page for my latest news, sketches, and many others.

Monday, 31 December 2012

Review of 2012

Yep, it's time for my annual selection of topical pocket cartoons from the past year, some published, some not.

Let's dive straight in...

A bit of technology that caught my eye...

The government carried on with its privatisation programme...
(They've privatised the yellowbrick road!)
...and its war on drugs...
A new building was unveiled in London, as the weather closed in (Cartooning pal Royston Robertson beat me to this one in Private Eye, the blighter, with the very same gag)...
Newspapers continued to struggle, as the recession rumbled on...
Bankers remained unpopular and discredited...
And the cuts to, well, just about everything continued...
That book (and more wet weather)...
Those Olympics...
(Me? I'm Legacy)


The big supermarkets squeezed the profit margins for dairy farmers ever tighter...
A film came out of one of my favourite books...
That Jimmy Savile business...
(Yes, Savile was my patient for many years. He talked a lot about his
sexual misdemeanours, but of course, you assumed he was joking...)
...and the fall-out from it...
That's all folks -- Happy New Year!

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

The Dandy is dead! Long live the Dandy!

Yes, the final print issue of The Dandy is now on the shelves, on its 75th anniversary -- featuring 75 strips plus a pull-out facsimile of the first ever issue. This one's got collector's item written all over it. (Probably shouldn't have done that to my copy -- it's going to reduce its value, isn't it? Gah.)

My contributions to the final issue include a reprise of Robin Hood's Schooldays (which I first drew for the 2013 Dandy annual -- also on sale now), a Mr Meecher the Uncool Teacher mini-strip, plus...



Unlike Robin Hood's Schooldays, The Badd Lads and Billy Whizz, where I've tried to ghost the original artist's style, with Jack Silver I've made no attempt to draw like Bill Holroyd, and have drawn the strip in my own style. I wanted to do a gentle spoof of the original, and reinvent it with a wacky humour and a more cartoony style. It was a lot of fun.

There are tons of great strips, old and new, in there -- reportedly (I haven't actually seen a copy yet, reports are it's quite hard to get hold of -- so don't waste any time!)

The good news is, The Dandy is carrying on in digital form, boldly going where no comic with a 75 year history has been before -- and today also sees the launch of the new online Dandy. I'd take a day or two to soak up the final print issue and then check it out, if I were you, it seems a little buggy just now, but I'm sure they'll soon get it all running smoothly.

I'm working on a strip for that, too, as we speak. (Or rather, I should be, if I wasn't writing this)

The Dandy is dead! Long live the Dandy!

Friday, 30 November 2012

New two-part Useleus starts this week in The Phoenix

Yes, the ancient Greek unhero Useleus is back in The Phoenix this week (#48), for the first time in a two-part adventure which concludes next week. Written by the insanely talented (or possibly just insane) Alexander Matthews, artwork by yours truly.

Available in Waitrose and some comics and book shops, or at The Phoenix website (link above) -- buy one or be a bald-faced raccoon.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Billy Whizz duties in The Beano

Yes, as some of you guessed from last week's tricky teaser, I recently got the job of writing and drawing Billy Whizz for The Beano. On the strength of the Badd Lads stuff I did for the current Dandy annual, another strip originated by Malcolm Judge, the Ed asked me for a traditional Malcolm Judge style Billy. 
And traditional is what I'm giving him! Here's the whole family, in my second Billy Whizz page, appearing in this week's Beano. 
Elsewhere in the Beano, parents are being modernised all over the place -- both Minnie the Minx and Dennis the Menace have got shiny new modern-looking parents. But not Billy -- the ed and I decided we'd go right back to the bow-tie and moustache wearing original Mr Whizz. 
For my part in that decision, I think bow ties and moustaches are funny. (No offence intended to any bow-tie wearing moustachioed men -- or indeed women -- reading this) 

Friday, 19 October 2012

Pegasus!

Here's a cartoon from the current issue of the Spectator. 
And yes, I probably got the idea from doing Useleus...

Monday, 15 October 2012

75 years of the Dandy

As promised, here are a few more excerpts from my Dandy annual 2013 endpapers.


But can you name all the characters? And yes, I'm including that character of whom we can only see their legs. (No cheating and looking at the actual endpapers -- you shouldn't be looking at that annual til Christmas Day anyway!)

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Diamonds are forever?

Forgotten Moments In Music History continues in the latest issue of Private Eye, written by the highly talented Rik Edwards. The Eye team lightened the image quite considerably, however, so here is the director's cut, as it were. I had intended it to be quite dark and noirish...

They also threw a little more light on the joke -- in the magazine the caption reads: 
'Shirley Bassey discovered that apparently diamonds can leave in the night'

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Useleus #3 in the latest issue of The Phoenix

Yep, Useleus, the Ancient Greek buffoon created by Alexander Matthews and me, has his third four-page outing in The Phoenix this week (#39). And it's absolutely definitely one of my firm personal favourites so far! 
You can pick up a copy from Waitrose or some independent bookshops, but do pay for it before you leave the shop.


Saturday, 15 September 2012

Dandy, Dandy, where you gonna go now...?

I expect you've heard that The Dandy, at least as a printed comic, is due to end publication in December, on its 75th anniversary. A great shame, of course, but I suppose nothing lasts forever. There is a Save The Dandy campaign, and I guess if you want to be part of it going out and buying the comic would seem like a good start. Ironically -- from what I've seen anyway -- it's easier to find at the moment than it has been for some time.

My character, Mr Meecher The Uncool Teacher, is back in the comic from now til the end, I believe, albeit in reduced circumstances: The powers that be couldn't find a full page classroom for him, so he's in the portakabin of a three-panel mini-strip. 
I also note that the Dandy annual 2013 is now on the shelves, with loads of great stuff, and 12 pages of comics written and drawn by me, as mentioned here before -- three double-page Winker Watsons, and three each single page Badd Lads and Robin Hood's Schooldays. (I drew four Badd Lads pages but one seems to have been left out in a printing error, with a Lew Stringer Smasher page being printed twice instead) 

I also drew the endpapers for the book, and I drew 75 Dandy characters, past and present, to mark the occasion. Perhaps I'll post a few here between now and December.... Here's Beryl the Peril.

Finally, a bit of good news to end on. The Dandy annual is to continue being published, and I have already been commissioned to draw more Winker Watson for the 2014 book. (In fact, I've already drawn the three double-page spreads -- I know, I'm such a swot!)

Monday, 13 August 2012

Useleus is on the cover...

...of this week's Phoenix comic. The second 4-page Useleus story is inside, written by the ridiculously funny Alexander Matthews.


In other news, Forgotten Moments in Music History continues in Private Eye, plus there's a hat-trick of Wilbur gags in there in the current issue. Here's one:
Me? I'm Legacy.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

You wait ages for a debut...

...and then two come along at once...


Following the debut of Useleus in The Phoenix, a new feature begins in the current issue of Private Eye, entitled Forgotten Moments In Music History. It's another of those collaborations I've been on about -- I'm on art duties again, the series is written by the witty Mr Rik Edwards.



I say series... I'm not entirely sure how committed the Eye are to running this as a regular, so we'll have to see. They first expressed an interest in it in the New Year, but considering the time that had passed, I was quite surprised when I got a call saying they were going to use this one. I had thought Forgotten Moments had been.. well -- forgotten.

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Useleus debuts in The Phoenix!

The first Useleus -- a 4-page comic story written by Alexander Matthews, drawn by yours truly -- appears in this week's issue (#27) of the splendid new comic, The Phoenix!
Meanwhile, I've just finished the artwork for the second story, which is due to appear in issue #32. Oooooooh, yes.


You can buy it in Waitrose, many good independent bookshops and comic shops, or online at the Phoenix site linked to above. There's no excuse. Go get a copy. Now! RUN!!

Friday, 1 June 2012

Collaborations bear fruit

As mentioned in the last post I've been working on a few collaborations lately, and a couple of them have begun to bear fruit. There's a preview of the new comic creation by Alexander Matthews and myself here, and below is a cartoon from the latest issue of Private Eye, idea by David Leach.

I can still write stuff myself, too, though -- honest!

Friday, 11 May 2012

Collaborations

Been working on lots of collaborations recently, which is a bit of a departure. 
Working on projects with, among others, enfant terrible creator of The Dandy's Nuke Noodle Alexander Matthews, comics institution (Oink, Psycho Gran) David Leach, and prominent cartoonist and children's book creator Clive Goddard


These mainly involve me drawing, the other writing, though there's one iron in the fire which might involve me writing for someone else to draw... so I'm mixing it up a lot. Fun!


Here's a teensy glimpse at one collab which looks like it might be going to see the light of day, but I'm not telling you which, who, or where just yet!







Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Meech for president!

So, my Dandy character Mr Meecher The Uncool Teacher is up against a bunch of his rivals in a Dandy popularity poll. It's a one-click vote, no registration or anything required. At the time of writing, Meech is doing okay, but has rather a lot of catching up with Desperate Dan to do... go here to cast your vote.
All votes for Meech greatly appreciated!


Saturday, 17 March 2012

Early interior decoration

Having not blogged for two weeks, I've decided to treat you to two posts in as many days. (No, you're right, I can't count. Oh well, something like that)
I've been concentrating on comics of late, and have been drawing very few magazine cartoons, but I've kept my hand in with the very occasional batch... A couple of these are in today's issue of The Spectator. Here's one of them. 



Thursday, 15 March 2012

New Dandy characters!

Crikey, is it a fortnight since I blogged? You'd think I'd been busy, wouldn't you? (Not particularly)
Well, I'm back to announce some new characters in this week's Dandy...


First up, a new mini-strip, called Angry Nerds. Here's a preview of the handsome devils of the title...
But there's also a new character in Mr Meecher The Uncool Teacher -- Meech visits the local pet shop to buy a new pet for the class... I'm not going to preview him here as he doesn't appear til the final frame, but he's back in the next two weeks' Meecher stories. So you'd better get used to him, see.
Tons of other great stuff in there too, as always. Laters, dudes.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

*Uncle* Biffo...

Just occasionally the worlds of comics and magazine cartoons collide...
(Unpublished cartoon from early last year)

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Sketchbook graffiti -- giraffe

Another of my 7-year-old son's captions on one of my sketchbook drawings. This one's a bit sad...
"I got him!"    "I'm DEAD!"    "What!"    "Did I?"    "WHY YOU!"    "You killed a garafe" (sic)    "Pow"

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Wilbur does... The Badd Lads!

I've just finished four more pages for the 2013 Dandy annual, to add to the Winker Watson and  Robin Hood's Schooldays strips I produced last month. This time I've been breathing new life into the old Beezer strip The Badd Lads. (A bunch of inept crooks, for the ill-read among you). 


The strip was originally drawn by Malcolm Judge, who also produced Billy Whizz and Ball Boy for The Beano, and The Numskulls for The Beezer. Like my Robin Hood's Schooldays pages, I've worked pretty close to the original style...and yet somehow without finding it a big adjustment from my usual style.


I'm now working on one last thing for the Dandy annual... the endpapers, which I've been having rather a lot of fun with... 

Monday, 20 February 2012

Sketchbook graffiti

There are lots of old sketchbooks hanging around in our house, so over the last few years I've been using them up... The figure on the left here was drawn years back by my girlfriend, the figure on the right more recently by me, and the captions were added even more recently by my son...
"A gun!"     "Yes."     "How dare you"

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Random comic strip

This was going to be a 9,017 page epic graphic novel, but after a bit of ruthless editing it ended up a three panel strip...

Monday, 13 February 2012

Thursday, 9 February 2012

I See Dead Books...

...is a haunt for book buyers, book lovers, readers and collectors -- vintage, out-of-print, collectable and used books of all genres...


So, I did this logo for them a while back...



...they didn't like the clouds, so I took them out of the final edit; the above is the director's cut, as it were. Drop in to the site here.

Monday, 6 February 2012

Sketchbook graffiti

Recently my seven-year-old son got hold of my sketchbook and wrote his own captions on some of my drawings. The cheeky young pup!
"I am massive."

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Meecher framed!

Okay, I know I've been banging on about the Dandy a lot lately, and I promise this'll be the last time (for a while) -- but I have to mention this week's Mr Meecher The Uncool Teacher -- mainly because it took me twice as long as normal to draw, dagnabbit! 
It's a bit different and is a bit of a must for Meech fans, as it has a frame around it which works as a guide to all the characters in the strip to date, as well as being, well, you know, maybe quite a nice thing in its own right. I can't really reproduce it here other than as a tiny thumbnail, because I'd be hauled off to the Dandy dungeons and bludgeoned by Desperate Dan, but once again -- and for the last time for, oh at least a week -- I urge you to support this great British institution, the country's funniest comic for kids, and go out and buy a copy! Out now.


(EDIT: 12th February: I've now put the whole strip in the comics section, so you can see it at a decent size)

Friday, 27 January 2012

Robin Hood's Schooldays

As a few sharp cookies amongst you guessed, the second strip I've produced for the forthcoming Dandy annual is Robin Hood's Schooldays. It was originally drawn by Ron Spencer in the '70s, in a style which pretty much reprised the Leo Baxendale-esque style he used when he took over Little Plum for The Beano in 1962 (thanks Wikipedia!)


It's a strip I always loved, as it combined a Bash Street kind of mentality and art style with Robin Hood, who was a big hero of mine as a kid. (I was released on parole in 1993 after serving five years for armed robbery*)


Anyway, here's a title panel from one of the strips.
(*Yes, that was a joke)

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Guess the strip!

Following on from this post, I'm happy to report that the 2013 Dandy annual will include, as well as the three two-page Winker Watson strips I mentioned, three one-page strips of another vintage Dandy strip, by yours truly.


Quite interesting facts about this one:
  • It'll complete a triumvirate of school-based strips for the Dandy (the other two being Winker Watson and Mr Meecher The Uncool Teacher, obviously)
  • It bears the same initials as another of my Dandy strips. 
  • And in this one I'm ghosting the style of the original artist, Ron Spencer (much more closely than I did the Eric Roberts style on Winker Watson)
Have you guessed it yet? Oh come on, I've practically told you! It is a lesser-known strip, but it was always one I loved as a kid. I have a vague childhood memory of feeling deliciously happy reading this strip in a summer special, on the beach. (Not that that's going to help you much)


PS The weekly Dandy really is a great comic now, btw, and if you haven't tried it on your kids yet, I really urge you to give it a go -- this great British institution needs support! It seems to have got rid of the celebrity-based stuff (which I have to admit was my least favourite part) and now really is a cracking kids comic!


Cripes! Bit text-heavy, this post -- here's the title pic from this week's Mr Meecher The Uncool Teacher (out now) to appease the image-hungry:


Wednesday, 18 January 2012

More Wilbur's Winker Watson on the way

The year has started well for me, being kept busy so far throughout January with comics work... 


First up, following on from his appearance in Mr Meecher the Uncool Teacher, I'm happy to announce that I've just produced three two-page Winker Watson strips for the 2013 Dandy annual. 
It was one thing to put Winker in the Meecher strip as a guest star, but getting to produce actual Winker Watson strips was a real honour. The editor let me do it my way, too, which I'm eternally grateful for -- so expect more of the slightly tongue-in-cheek treatment he got in the Meecher/Winker crossover strip.
Of course, we've got a bit of a wait, but not too long -- the annuals come out in about April these day, don't they?