The Journal

Learn to Draw… Giant Food & Tiny People

Avast me Hearties! Drawing Pirates & Pirate Ships Last week (2020-05-13) in our livestream session we had an absolutely fantastic time drawing pirate ships on the high seas! I love drawing curvy waves and old wooden ships – there’s just something about that which never stops being fun – even when you’re a grown up. It’s always hard to decide who has created the best artwork each week – but this time around I was Read more…

Build a font or Invade Russia During Winter?

Your latest picture book work is done. Your agent is at the Bologna Book Festival promoting your stuff. You’ve finished all but one of your Cadburys Creme Eggs, and you’re idly browsing fonts on www.dafont.com. “That looks easy! I can do that,” you think. After all, building a font is simple: You come up with a few basic rules/guides to follow (e.g. serif, futuristic, fixed width etc…) and then start playing around. Naturally, within a Read more…

JVenn Young Writers Awards Ceremony

  I am fantastically excited to announce that this Thursday (28th February) I’ll be presenting Awards to a bunch of talented young folk at the JVenn Young Writers Awards Ceremony. The long and the short of it is that the JVenn Foundation is a fantastic organisation that helps lots of young people in the Hull area become the best that they can be. They provide grants and support to help young learners follow their dreams Read more…

Baking with a little Bear

If you’re looking for something awesome to do with your kids: try baking. For those of you not in the know, baking is like buying a cake, but you end up much more mess, washing up, and stuff for the dogs to lick off the floor. Happily, it also comes with plenty of joy and satisfaction, too. My mum recently gave me a recipe she’s made called Happy Honey Cake that eschews high amounts of refined Read more…

Thought Bubble 2018

Thought Bubble is packed with a mixture of professional established artists and writers, enthusiastic amateurs, cheeky kids who have photocopied their own comic and everything in between. Every single person there is at a different point in their creative career, with different backgrounds, values and passions. But this year, around midday on Saturday, something hit me and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it since: namely that there’s one unifying motivation within everyone Read more…

a boy lost in a cave is surrounded by flying moths that spell out THERE IS YET HOPE IN DARKEST NIGHT

Ethical Responsibilities of a Designer

Creating images is something we do instinctively; give a one year old a crayon, and you’ll see unconfined joy as they clumisly rub it against paper, leaving delicate scribbles as they go – the happiness that spreads across their face when they realise that they are able to permanantly leave their mark on something is incredible. Now go take your crayon off them before they get near the wallpaper and start leaving waxy marks everywhere. Read more…

Thought Bubble 2017

If you’ve never been to Thought Bubble Festival in Leeds, then you should know that it feels like spending an entire weekend being hugged by a kitten the size of Estonia. Out in the real world, where there’s rusty lampposts, lots of drizzle and many grumpy bus conductors it’s easy to forget just how many people love illustrations and artwork: a lot, as it turns out. This year was my first time exhibiting at Thought Read more…