Thursday, October 31, 2013


You can't. Best movie of 2012. 'Nuff said.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013


They've nothing to do with one another. Does what it says on the tin. 

Stewie as a Terminator for my good pal Jeff Rebner...

...and a gunship from the strip I contributed to Zarjaz #16.

I find designing vehicles pretty arduous but so rewarding when (if!) it all comes together. This one's a mash of everything from a Russian MIL-24 helicopter, a wasp and an Eagle from Space: 1999.

Friday, October 25, 2013


As there's countless other, and far worse, ways I could have made the news, I'm sure my family will settle for this. All over the English press today. Only finished it Wednesday night!

1. I could draw the Queen, Charles and Camilla all day long. They have fascinating faces. So many possibilities.

2. Since I colored Ezquerra's Strontium Dog commission below I've discovered I'm very good at coloring refreshing looking beer. Making me thirsty.

Thursday, October 24, 2013


Sketched this out yesterday. It's pretty slight but there were three things I wanted to achieve - 

I've been poring over EDUARDO RISSO's beautiful artwork lately. I'm fascinated by artists who aren't afraid of using huge areas of black and Risso is a master. I can never figure out how he manages to keep a pose so clear by using silhouette or shadow but he never fails to amaze me. There's never any confusion or lack of clarity so I figured I'd do something simple and see if I could I sell it in the same way.

Risso says "what?" one more time...
100 Bullets
He's also an extremely graphic artist. Hard shapes. There's not a lot of rendering or cross-hatching. Mostly just clean lines, broken up with clever use of black and white. (100 Bullets is just fantastic. You should go hunt down the trades and read them all right now.)

The second thing I was toying with was using photo reference for the pose. I found myself frustrated by my inability to beat the drawing into where I wanted it to go. Couldn't figure out the poses and eventually scoured the web for something I could refer to. And here's the thing - I felt like I was cheating. I can be too much of a purist when it comes to this stuff, I guess, and with myself too. There's a streak of pride that says I should be able to draw this stuff from my head and if I need help, that's a cheat.

But I like how the drawing turned out. It's not like I just traced a photograph. It's been altered and repositioned and reinterpreted and y'know, if I wanted to draw a 1973 Dodge Charger it's not like I'm going to pull that out of my head, now is it? When I worked in feature animation, all we did was use live-action reference for human movement and posing.

Then by some weird coincidence, I saw THIS ARTICLE this morning about using photo reference and now all's well with my world again. Need to give myself a break sometimes...

The thing is, now I'm asking myself why I haven't been doing this before...? Feel quite inspired now to try new things.

The third point was this sketch was initially supposed to be Fiona Apple but it's a little too generic looking to be her. Next time maybe. Needs some quirky.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013


For 2000AD's monthly art competition from a little while back. Won me a wee prize too.

It was about halfway through this piece I hit upon the idea of trying to stylize it a bit more than usual and make it look almost celtic, without it being too ornate. Simplifying it down to simple graphic shapes. I always spend so much time building and covering stuff up. Fun to just keep clean, clear lines. I love the green Terminator. Metal codpiece hot pants.


There are Dredd fans and then there's John Burdis. If he's not busy dispensing judgement in his garb of office at every convention he can reach, he's busy gathering every single piece of Dredd/2000AD memorabilia and storing it in his basement. What, you think I'm joking?

Here. See for yourself.

Better than collecting dead hookers, I always say. John's a lovely chap and can, coincidentally, kill you with his thumbs so you should probably go check out his collection. It'll take you days to go through all this stuff...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


It's hard to remember there once was a time we still worked with paper and pencils on Family Guy. Whole thing went digital a few years ago. The variety of work hasn't changed though. One day you're designing giant homicidal Transformers constructed out of dudes in wheelchairs...

...the next you're sketching slutty strippers. There's worse ways to make a living.

(Family Guy is the property of FOX, obviously. Just throwing that out there.)

Monday, October 21, 2013


One of the LEMMY doc's directors asked if I'd throw this together for Lemmy as a present. Only too happy to oblige and drop it off in person to the man himself at his roost in the Rainbow Bar and Grill. Had a natter over a pint of Guinness and we both enthusiastically agreed that the weather back home is shite. A total gent and warrior.

His health's been in the news a bit this year but can't imagine it'll be too long before he's out crushing skulls with Motörhead again.

Educate yourselves. This is what a real rock'n'roll legend looks like:

Sunday, October 20, 2013



I love this piece. I'll even tell you why: the whole thing's a happy accident. I hadn't intended to have it so painterly looking but sometimes you just mess around with a bunch of different brushes in Photoshop with a nice sharp-edged eraser to do damage control and you move outside of your own style. I'm always frustrated by my own limitations, my own approach and methods. I assume it's like that with a lot of artists so it's very exciting (to me, anyway) to create a piece of artwork that takes a life of its own while you're working on it.

Saturday, October 19, 2013


Absolutely fantastic. Can't wait for this now. Two-parter due in December.

Friday, October 18, 2013


So yes, it's true. It's in the works. It's going to take some time. It's ground to a bit of a halt with everyone's day jobs getting in the way but we'll be back at it as soon as we can and knocking this back into shape. What can I say without getting myself into trouble with my partners-in-crime...?

It's probably only going to be five minutes long or so. We have the blessing of Dredd's owners although that comes with a major caveat - no funding, no Kickstarter, etc. It has to be purely not-for-profit so really any budget we have is made up of people's goodwill and enthusiasm for the character. 

It's classic-era Dredd. Probably pre-Apocalypse War. We're sticking very close to the comics. There's no radical reinvention of the concept here although as every other attempt to bring Dredd's world to life has involved some reworking, this might be the closest incarnation to the strip in style and tone so I'm going to say that's pretty radical in itself.

It's too early to start showing off everything we have so far but we've let this one out of the bag to give some idea of the style.

So anyway - for those of you who don't know, animation is a painfully slow, meticulous process. (Especially if you want it done right.) It takes a long time to get from point A to point B and don't mistake any long silences as anything other than we're toiling away on this thing behind the scenes.

Preliminary character designs are being wrapped up. I'm very proud of what's been produced so far.

I finally have the answer to a question I've often been asked (and often wondered myself!): WHY HASN'T ANYONE TRIED THIS BEFORE?

It's a disappointingly simple answer, folks: Dredd is SHIT hard to draw right. He really is. Despite being drawn and reinterpreted by dozens of different artists over almost 40 years, it's still really easy to get him wrong. One element out of place and it's all pear-shaped. Don't even get me started on the helmet. (I had a particularly humbling and galling moment at San Diego Comic-Con watching 2000AD artist extraordinaire Henry Flint fart out a wondrous sketch of Dredd for me in sixty seconds while I tried to forget it took me almost two weeks of murderous wailing and gnashing of teeth to get the same design right.)

Dredd's costume is detailed and ornate and completely impractical and trying to figure out what/how/why to simplify so that somebody can animate it, draw it over and over and over again from various angles is hard work. But it's all worked out. We have a Dredd we're happy with along with plenty of other assorted oiks, muckers and denizens of Mega City One.

What else? The mighty Rich McAuliffe has written us up a fantastic script. We don't have a lot of time to tell a huge tale but the script he wrote perfectly captures the tone of John Wagner and one of those one-off six pager lumps of awesomeness.

The inimitable Flint Lockjaw has been a trooper having drawn, voiced and edited together a rough animatic from the script so we can see how it all fits together and we can tweak/edit ideas. This is a painfully familiar process in animation but for us, it's even more crucial. Just like the cast and crew of the mind-blowing JUDGE MINTY film, we have no budget to work from. We need to be sure our planning's as tight and lean as it can be so there's no waste of anyone's time or talent.

So there you have it. Train's still rolling. Dredd's in VERY good hands right now. We'll keep you posted.

Updates and progress can be followed HERE at the film's website.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

"THE HILLS OF HELLFIRE, MY LOVE..." - pages 1, 2 & 3

I wrote and illustrated this strip for the wondrous ZARJAZ magazine (to call it merely a fanzine would be such a rotten disservice to this fine publication). The most enjoyment I've had in years and a sad reminder (sad because as a working artist, you tend to forget this part...) that sometimes drawing something is its own reward. 

I had fully intended to ink this up and make it look slick and awesome but somewhere between running against a deadline and having an epiphany that not everything needs to be polished in the end**, I let it run like this. Far sketchier and looser than I usually would have liked but I think with the story it's telling, it just about works. As always, there's always stuff you wish you could go back and change but I feel like there's more good than bad here. All you can hope for in the end.

Also finally found a home for the vehicle designs gracing the very first post of this blog from many, many moons ago. Always pays to keep sketches lying around. Never know when something will just click into place. (Or I'm just too lazy to design new ones.)

This is just the first three pages of the strip from Zarjaz #16. There's eight in total. You want to see the rest? HERE's where you need to go. Go support it. A wealth of riches and completely affordable.

Have a script for another one that hopefully I'll be getting to in the near future...

(**I spent a long time working in feature animation as an assistant/clean-up artist where the look of the final drawings had to be very slick, very tight and as you were working over top of an animator's rough drawings, usually more concerned with capturing a movement or gesture or acting, I often wonder how much energy was sacrificed from those drawings in order to tighten them up. As I get older, I find myself trying to avoid going that route now and leaving artwork looser than intended.)

As always, click on the images to enlarge 'em.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013


Seth himself very nicely signed one for me and I sent it off to the 2000AD offices. Good fun and makes me hope for a bizarro-world moment when we get this as a cutaway...


While we're dealing with commissions - I've one in the works from the hands of the almighty McMahon himself. A fantastic artist - offbeat and completely incomparable - and a huge, HUGE influence on myself. Go check out his artwork HERE and prepare to be smacked in the gob...

I'd asked him to revisit the cover from prog 74 of 2000AD from 1978 and this is the rough he sent. Lord knows when I'll see the finished art but the images below give some idea of how it'll look when tightened up and inked. C-H-A-M-P-I-O-N-!

Original cover from 1978

Brian Bolland takes a go...

McMahon commission example...

...and another.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013


Philip Parris Lynott. Ireland's greatest musical export. I did this piece for Hyaena Gallery here in Los Angeles and their "Rock Is Dead" show, celebrating some fallen greats. Never really liked the face. It looks like Phil but something's not quite working for me. Reworked it a bit but I dunno. Can't save them all, I suppose.

Monday, October 14, 2013


I suppose if there's one advantage to one of your favorite artists not being widely recognized in the States, it's that personal commissions from the man come at a reasonable rate. Carlos Ezquerra, the man responsible for visualizing the likes of Judge Dredd and (below) Strontium Dog for 2000AD and Rat Pack and Major Eazy for Battle, very kindly produced this for me. Champion.

Naturally, I couldn't leave it alone...

Sunday, October 13, 2013


It's not like Tony Iommi himself called and begged. Through a friend in work I did get to submit this as a potential single cover for Black Sabbath's first single from their latest album. (They'd added a '?' to the song title by then - "God Is Dead?")

The usual set of conditions - told about it on the Friday, due by the Monday. Not like I really thought it would get chosen - it all looks a little too punk rock - but nice enough to know maybe the boys at least got to look over something of mine.

Ah well. A nice thought anyway.


There's no secret of my long love affair with Britain's weekly comic extravaganza 2000AD, the greatest example of a sci-fi anthology you're likely to find this side of the galaxy. Almost 40 years at the forefront of British pop-culture and still as exciting, original and inventive as ever.

Anyway, the inimitable Mr. Pete Wells runs an almighty blog over at 2000AD COVERS UNCOVERED, showcasing each week's cover and the work that goes into producing said artwork. Very interesting and inspiring. Champion stuff. Go check it out.

Saturday, October 12, 2013


For a Hanna-Barbera themed art show. 

You tend to forget, for people my age anyway, how much of this stuff there was on TV as a kid. Seriously, go google it and see what comes up! After much procrastinating, I eventually settled on this for a concept. (Mad Max is never far away when it comes to my concepts...!) 

Also, cars are hard. Fun to design. Brain-numbingly difficult to draw placed into an environment. For me, anyway. Have to say, I would have lost my shit if this had been a show when I was younger.