British Museum

Launch Success! Cake and Comics.

Good afternoon faithful followers!

So, what a week it’s been! Crashing towards the finish-line of University looking bedraggled, full of hay-fever and lacking sleep, it’s clear that hosting a launch party for Njálla at the same time as finishing up my degree was quite a brave choice.. The whole of last week has been mostly a blur of comics, catalogue designs and getting my fingers stuck to objects with superglue. BUT, three years of further education is almost over and Njálla is out there in the world, so the lack of sleep is totally worth it.

This past Saturday night saw the launch of Njálla here in Northampton at the NN Café, with a whole host of family and friends coming down to join in the fun and help me celebrate my latest comic-ing venture! I have to admit, it’s very strange to host an event centred around my work, given that I usually spend my time hiding in my drawing cave. I’ve never much been one for drawing attention to myself (well, apart from when I had a purple mohawk), but that being said, it’s important to throw yourself into these situations every once and a while, right? After working on Njálla start to finish over 8 months I definitely needed to have a large beverage and end the biggest project of my career so far on a high note! Here are some photos from the night, borrowed from a number of people (thank you, photo people!):

Huge thanks to my handsome assistant Chris who donned a Njálla t-shirt with me and helped to calm my nerves, and my mum who brought a Northern Lights themed cake for us all to share around! Of course, big thanks also go to everyone who travelled near and far to come along and show their support, including Broken Frontier‘s Andy Oliver who finally got his copy of Njálla! Finally, thank you to the NN Café for hosting, it was a perfect venue and a great time was had by all! (I hope)

In other news, my next appearance on the comics circuit was announced the other day; I’ll be part of the Gosh! Comics and Broken Frontier Drink and Draw at the end of June! I’m honoured to have been asked to attend alongside Amber Hsu and Christian Ortiz, as well as my Six to Watch 2015 companion Danny Noble, the artist in residence for Drink and Draw. You can read all about the Drink and Draw from Gosh! here, and register your interest here! I dropped off some signed copies of Njálla at Gosh! Comics yesterday too so you can head down to pick up your copy ahead of time for the grand total of £8.

 

Whilst I was in London yesterday dropping off comics to lovely comics people to put on their shelves, I made time to scoot on over to the British Museum to see their Sunken Cities exhibition. Following the recent rediscovery of the two port cities Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus near Alexandria in Egypt that sank into the sea around 1’300 years ago, Sunken Cities looks at the relationship between Ancient Egypt and Ancient Greece and the careful removal and restoration of a whole host of incredibly preserved artefacts. You’ve probably all guessed by now that I’m really interested in historic cultures (The Red Road, Njálla) and I’d been waiting to see this exhibition since they first announced it last year! Armed with a sketchbook, I ended up spending two hours in the exhibition drawing and making notes; it was just so nice to take an afternoon off from all the madness and stress and to just immerse myself in history. It really was a fantastic exhibition, and I urge you to go and see it if you can. You can find all the information about the exhibition here.

CkWyry1WkAAzMx3

My short-lived freedoms in the British Museum didn’t last long, and these next few days are back to the grind in finishing up the University of Northampton Illustration Degree Show, ready to launch on Friday evening. After what feels like a massively long slog, it’s almost over and our work from the final year will be up on display for all to see! The private launch starts this Friday early-evening, and then the show runs from Saturday to the following Sunday 19th. If you’re interested in attending head on over to our Facebook event page here. I will have a full breakdown of the Degree Show launch next week, so until then I’d best get back to work.. Have a good week everyone!

x

 

Share:

Busy, busy, busy

Well, what a busy week its been! Firstly, I’ve taken on extra hours at the paid-job to help me out before I have to drop my hours in September, so that’s been keeping me out of trouble. Then, came Art in Action last Thursday, plus after a full day in London on Saturday the week has begun yet again, and I can feel this busy schedule in my poor aching legs. So, in chronological order, here we go!

I’ve been to Art in Action once before in 2011, which I covered somewhat in my blog here, and I enjoyed it just as much this year as I did previously. It was a great day; The weather was beautiful, if not a little toastie in the depths of the various tents. For those who don’t know, Art in Action is a big arts and crafts festival which allows artists to showcase their work and demonstrate their processes. There is also a giant arts market for loads of supplies, and a makers market in which you can buy various goodies. There are several areas covered including painting, sculpture, jewellery, glassblowing, international artists and illustration/calligraphy, even beekeeping. Illustration always feels a little lacking, though with the amount to cover in the whole event its not really a surprise! My highlights from this year were illustrators Jackie Morris and Shelly Perkins, and printmaking extraordinaires Ian Phillips and Laura Boswell. I’m fairly useless at printing, I don’t seem to be able to practise the same kind of patience in printing that I do on a physical drawing, though I absolutely love the effects printing produces. Watching Ian Phillips making reduction lino prints, and Laura Boswell making traditional Japanese woodblock watercolour prints was pretty gosh-darn super, and I’m looking forward to trying out some more printing if I get the opportunity in the second year of university.

Left: Jackie Morris, Right: Shelly Perkins
Left: Jackie Morris, Right: Shelly Perkins
Left: Ian Phillips, Right: Laura Boswell
Left: Ian Phillips, Right: Laura Boswell

After some much needed family time and cider on Friday came an action-packed day in London with my handsome northerner on Saturday. A couple of months ago Ravi got in touch and mentioned an upcoming HOAX: Psychosis Blues signing being organised at Gosh! Comics in Soho! Luckily for me I managed to squeeze in a trip to the British Library for the Comics Unmasked exhibition (until 19th August), and I’m so glad I did as the range of work and topics was absolutely incredible. Bumping my forehead on glass-cases to try and get closer to the original artwork of comics such as Watchmen and Tank Girl was definitely worth it. Topics covered included politics, sex, heroes, and dreams; It’s not often I enjoy an exhibition as much as this one, I definitely recommend it to anyone who is able to get to London before it closes, whether you’re a comics fan or not. It really was fascinating! After refuelling at Subway, I met up with the other HOAX’ers Ravi Thornton (author),Karrie FransmanRian HughesJulian HanshawIan JonesHannah Berry and Mark Stafford (illustrators) at Gosh! Comics for a happy afternoon of signing. I met Mark, Karrie and Rian for the first time, as they weren’t present at the launch last month, and they are just as lovely as everyone I’ve met so far. The whole afternoon was a whirlwind of squiggles and doodles, requests and new faces though there were some familiar faces as Andy Oliver from Broken Frontier came along to say hi too! I also managed to pick up Dan Berry‘s book Suitcase on half price which I was chuffed about. After the signings we made our way to a nice pub to finish of the day nicely. Here are some pictures from the day:

From L-R: Karrie Fransman, Rian Hughes, Ravi Thornton, Julian Hanshaw, myself, Ian Jones, Hannah Berry and Mark Stafford.
From L-R: Karrie Fransman, Rian Hughes, Ravi Thornton, Julian Hanshaw, myself, Ian Jones, Hannah Berry and Mark Stafford.
What a happy bunch!
What a happy bunch!

Anyway, that’s it for now. I have a competition entry for a 6-page comic that I’m working on at the moment so I shall endeavour to have something nice to show you all soon. x

Share: