Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Frederik Pohl, 1919-2013

As he lived to 93, there were many pictures of him on line to use as reference. I decided on this older version of him for no other reason than I liked the photograph. You can read many well written thoughts on his passing else where like TOR for one. I'll just draw this quick sketch...

Monday, 12 August 2013

A space woman?

Not a warm up. Just trying out pen nibs. Very slow going with pens.
I think it's brushes for me. Until I cave in and get a Cintiq some day.

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Two for Tuesday!

Two what, I don't know. But they warmed up my drawing hand as always...

Monday, 22 July 2013

Royal Baby

Warming up with a silly drawing and some silly...okay, bad jokes about a royal baby that may be "crowning" at this this very moment. I only regret that I couldn't come up with more than three bad jokes.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Post vacation warm up

No Mandela or new baby images for me. Just warming up the brush hand with silly sketches.

Sunday, 30 June 2013


To say that Nelson Mandela is important to Africans is a wild understatement. He is not only the greatest living African, but he may be the greatest African who has ever lived and one of the world's greatest men. I'm not going to spend a lot of time justifying that statement,  there are smarter people than me writing books to that effect right now. Sufficed to say that rebel leaders are ten-a-penny, it doesn't take so very much to smash something that is rotten from the inside. To rebuild it however,  to pull peace from chaos, to drag justice from terror and hatred takes true greatness.
I lived in Arusha in northern Tanzania some years ago. A place named "The Geneva of Africa" by Bill Clinton. The peace talks for Burundi were ongoing at the time. President Mandela was using his considerable influence to move things forward.
I was walking down the street next to the conference building one day when a car pulled out in front of me and paused before turning onto the main road. I glanced at the passenger in the back seat and made eye contact with Nelson Mandela. I had just about the good sense to not stare dumbly at him,  I waved. He waved back.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Super Rain

It's super rainy lately.  And not just a regular rain, but HARD RAINS that DRENCH the streets, subway tunnels and souls.

This is a collab with a very young artist, Madeline and myself.  We do great work together.  She doesn't know how to code yet so she doesn't have a website up.

(This is in response to Tim Hamilton's fish drawing a few days ago)


Friday, 31 May 2013

Yay, it's...Friday

Just to take a break from the children's book, here is a
sketch of two people. One happy, one unimpressed.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Friday, 10 May 2013

R.I.P. Ray Harryhausen

It's 2 days late, but here it is!
His movies shaped my fantasy world when I was a child.
His retrospective in parks on summer nights would be awesome. anyone know of anything like that happening in new york?


Thursday, 9 May 2013

Ray Harryhausen

I'm a day late with this. There's nothing I can add to the appreciation of Harryhausen's work other than I think he added an essential character and humanity to it that is often missing in FX work these days.

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

R.I.P. Ray Harryhausen: RELEASE THE KRAKEN!!

Today at Drawbridge we honor recently departed stop-motion guru Ray Harryhausen, the special effects whiz behind such classic movies as Jason & The Argonauts, The Seventh Voyage of Sinbad, and Clash of the Titans (I'm talking about the 1981 original-- the recent remake was an execrable pile of something unspeakable).
Release the, uh, me!
Ah, Clash of the Titans, you're not that bad a film.  I enjoyed you as a child, even though I was driven nuts by the scads of mythological inconsistencies.

The top thing that drove me nuts was the Kraken. The Kraken is not Greek!! It's a Norwegian monster, from, like, two millennia later. In the original Greek Myth, the sea monster that jeopardizes Andromeda is Cetus, a giant whale monster. As an adult, I now know that the reason for the substitution was that  Harryhausen thought that a giant squid monster like the Kraken  would be more fun to animate than a giant whale.

In recent years the catchphrase of "Release the Kraken" has become something of a meme. And it is fun to yell-- I especially recommend shouting it while in the stall of a crowded public bathroom. I decided today to draw Harryhausen's Kraken to honor the man and his work, even if it wasn't Greek ;)

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R.I.P. Ray Harryhausen

Before there was CG, there was Ray Harryhausen. He animated many "monster" or sci-fi creatures who populated the scary movies of my childhood, but the scene that stuck in my head the most over the years was the skeleton fight scene from Jason and the Argonauts.
A movie can mesmerize, but that scene TRIPLE mesmerized me (If there is such a term).
 You can see a clip here:
And here's my sketch inspired by said scene:

Thursday, 2 May 2013

Jamestown Skeletons

With the news about the Jamestown colony skeleton showing signs of cannibalism, I'm being
a bit morbid and sketching a... skeleton this morning. What ever warms up your hands, eh?
You can read more about Jamestown cannibalism here if you're interested:

Friday, 26 April 2013

Jesus Vs. Satan in video games

This seems a very popular topic on Drawbridge as Natalie's version of this gets
many MANY hits. There is no topic today, so I did this. Drew it yesterday and
inked it this morn to get my hands going. This is Jesus taking aim at Satan who
is far off camera eating lunch at one of those little bagel shops. He's actually
eating a cinnamon raisin bagel.That's how you know he's evil.

Monday, 22 April 2013

Earthday - Minecraft

It's earthday today and the first thing that came to my mind is the iconic Minecraft dirtblock. Perhaps this implies that I am too cut-off from the natural world? Or perhaps that Minecraft has taken up rather a lot of my leisure time. The game itself is a hyper rationalised version of the real world , complete with a simple ecology. One must harvest the bones of dead monsters to fertilize your crops. Irrigation is crucially important. Sadly the industrial aspects of the game are such that atmospheric pollution is not part of the game mechanic, but the thing about Minecraft is that it is always evolving , so it might be part of a future update. Perhaps increased toxins in the air will cause Creepers to get bigger and nastier...yes that would work. Perhaps in the real world that would be good too, dropping litter would be accompanied by a hissing noice and before you can turn around there's an almighty KABOOM!  Yes that would be good for the heads of many fortune 500 companies too.

It's Earth day!

So I drew the Earth Goddess on a recycled peice of brown bag that I will
put in our compost pail.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Armor guy with sword

Not anything fun in the news to do sketches about this week obviously,
but I still warm my fingers up in the morning.

So here's a sci-fi guy with a sword...

Monday, 8 April 2013

The Nanny State

I never thought I would or could ever do a remotely flattering portrait of Margaret Thatcher. She sprawls across my earliest political memories like a carnivorous spider. It would be too easy to describe her as a monster , though she certainly fostered many monstrous things. She was as cold and without mercy as idealogs tend to be, but I think it's her arrogance that I found most offensive. It's ironic that she bemoaned the 'Nanny State' when she pretty much embodied that kind of suffocating 'it's for your own good' cruelty. At one time I thought that her death would make me very happy. Now I don't really care.

Friday, 5 April 2013

R.I.P. Carmine Infantino

Infantino designed Bat Girl's costume back in the 60's and thus
my sketch. He did much much more than that, though.

You can read all about him here if you so choose:

So long Carmine Infantino

The great Carmine Infantino died yesterday at the age of 87. It would be impossible to sum up his career and his influence here. Sufficed to say that it was profound.
One of my early editors compared my work to his once . He didn't mean it in a flattering way, but I decided to take it as a compliment. I think he found my linework a bit too angular, to fast and stylized. One of the hallmarks of Infantino's work was its speed and confidence.
I had the pleasure of meeting and talking to Mr Infantino once and told him about that. He asked to see my work. Sadly I had nothing to show him at the time. Something that I regret now. Rest in peace maestro.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Iain (M) Banks

I borrowed Iain Banks' The Bridge from my flatmate Paul Aspden just after I finished college. I was told that Banks was brilliant but that the book was a difficult one. I was blown away by it! It was grand, ambitious,imaginative and funny. As much as it was a work of fantasy it also seemed VERY real to me. Which isn't too shocking as Banks apparently wrote the book under the shadow of the Forth Rail Bridge. which I had driven past for many years and gone over more than once in a train.
His debut novel The Wasp Factory similarly blew me away and seemed to speak directly to me in a way that no other novelist ever had. The fact that this guy was Scottish and this good was amazing. As being Scottish always seemed a bit naff to me as a young man. Scottish popular culture seemed suffocating, parochial and embarrassing . Banks made it ok to be Scottish , cool even! I proceeded to tear through all the Banks books I could get. His Sci-Fi novels were similarly breathtaking. Was there nothing that this guy couldn't do?
A year or so later my friend and collaborator Martin Millar casually introduced me to Iain Banks at a reading in Edinburgh. We went for a Pint or two at a local bar. Not only is Banks a great writer, but he's also a really charming , smart and funny guy. Which is of course completely obvious if you have ever read any of his work. He's also been tremendously prolific. I even lost track of his output for a few years while I was in Africa and frankly I'm still catching up. If anything he's gotten even better with age.

This morning I found out that Iain Banks has terminal cancer and probably only has some months to live.
That news made me very angry and very sad at the same time. The anger was selfish because I don't want to lose him, the sadness because so many other people will lose him too and for the pain he is going through.

I may hold off on reading my last few Banks books. I want to have at least one to look forward to.
All the best to you Sir and those that love you. I owe you a pint.

Easter Fool

We totally missed Easter and April Fools here on Drawbridge.
So did this warm up...

Friday, 29 March 2013

Jenna Louise Coleman

You all know what this weekend is right?
Yes, the premier of new Doctor Who episodes
featuring new companion Clara Oswald Oswin (did I get that right?)
Anyway, I drew a sketch of Clara from 
the upcoming Neil Gaiman episode (did I get that right?)

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Jenna Louise Coleman

The new Dr Who companion. She's very pretty in a kind of retro 40's cutie kind of way. So I thought I might try and do a full on 40s style airbrush portrait. Like a George Petty or a Gil Elvgren. This is my basic drawing and I'll try and post the various stages here as I go.

Tuesday, 19 March 2013

POSEIDON Earth Shaker!

George O'Connor's new graphic novel "POSEIDON Earth Shaker" is out this week so we're
doing some Poseidon illustrations...

Poseidon - God of wetness

George O'Connor has a new book out in his ongoing series of books profiling the Greek Gods 'The Olympians'. This one is about Poseidon, 'The Earth Shaker' http://www.amazon.com/Poseidon-Shaker-Olympians-George-OConnor/dp/1596437383/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1363706054&sr=8-1&keywords=Poseidon+George+O%27Connor

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Pope Francis 1st

Confused old white man walks into Vatican looking for the toilet and is made Pope.
I really didn't have enough time to do anything with the hands, sorry.

Wednesday, 13 March 2013


Something I drew for fun. Yea fun. I'm a bit anal I know.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Fear of a Black Pope

So just to annoy Tim , I'm going to take his frivolous topic completely seriously. The chances are very very small that the Catholic Church will have an African Pope in the near future. Though it's heartening that the 'safe' money is on a South American right now. I think it would be a very bold move by an institution that is seen as increasingly anachronistic and irrelevant to elect someone from Africa. To give that continent a strong voice on the world stage. I hear that Cardinal Peter Turkson of Ghana is a good candidate. I haven't a clue really . He has a nice face.

Pope Savile

As the world awaits word of who the next Pope will be, we at
Drawbridge thought we'd sketch who WE thought the
next Pope should be.

Yes, my choice is a bit controversial in that Jimmy Savile is indeed dead.
But I think it's time that the church give up these out dated and medieval
beliefs which only allow for older semi living white men to be Pope!
It's time for a change! For new (mostly dead) blood to invigerate this
most corrupt... I mean sacred institution!

Think about it. It's better than electing a...woman! Dear God!


Saturday, 9 March 2013

Margaret Hamilton - Wicked Witch of the West

As we all know that the West is an evil and decadent place. No doubt Tim's reluctance to draw ( someone who must be a relative , if distant ) is based on his latent socialism.

Friday, 8 March 2013

The Great and Powerful Oz

I don't know if I plan to see it, but Sam Raimi's "Great and Powerful Oz
comes out this weekend. Thus, I did this "not Margaret Hamilton" sketch today.

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Assassin’s Creed 4

I don't know anything about it other than the fact that it's a video game.
I seem to see it advertised a lot lately though so I did a sketch
of what seems to be the main character.

Monday, 4 March 2013


I don't really know anything about Netball, but I Googled this Rodman fellow and he seems to be a bit of a character. A cartoon character even. Yes I know that this is overlapping the boundaried on the sides here, but frankly that just makes it seem more Rodman-esque.

Dennis Rodman and Kim Jong Un become friends

I'm not suggesting anything unsavory happened after these two threw the
B-ball around, but when I googled images of Dennis Rodman so I could
draw him, the picture of him in the wedding dress kept popping up.

When I goggled Kim Jong Un that hair cut of his kept popping up...

Friday, 1 March 2013


Jennifer Lawrence is hungry...

Jennifer Lawrence won an Oscar for best actress so Simon wanted to draw her today.
Yes, I sketched that over used image of her hunting for chicken Mac Nuggets in that "Hunger Games"movie you may have seen...

Jennifer Lawrence

If you're not a little bit in love with Jennifer Lawrence right now I frankly doubt your humanity.