Tuesday 28 June 2011

Kids Want Silence - Doctor Who discovery

In my Comic Art Masterclasses in schools, I teach kids how to tell stories in pictures and, along the way, draw stuff on the flipchart. As always I ask who's a Doctor Who fan, (if only to see how much they'll be impressed by my stuff in Doctor Who Adventures) and then I draw The Doctor on the flipchart. Or a Dalek, always a popular choice. Or...

In recent weeks, since the latest series of Doctor Who has been on, I've given them the choice. Would they like me to show them how to draw a Dalek, a Cyberman or a Silence? And they choose? Every time..?

Oh look at the damn pictures.

Saturday 25 June 2011

Hot Rod Cow, as drawn by kids

In my Comic Art Masterclasses, I teach kids how easy and fun it is to draw comic strips. I encourage them to copy from comics, which I scatter around the table (as well as showing them many other ways of learning to draw). It's always a treat when they choose to copy or be inspired by my drawings and, for the last few weeks, they've had the chance to look at my newly published Hot Rod Cow. It seems to be popular, with kids drawing him as often as they draw the other most popular choices, Harry Hill out of The Dandy and random manga faces. Here are some of their efforts (by year 5 & 6 pupils). Click to enlarge.

Friday 24 June 2011

RIP Gene Colan

Very sad news. Gene Colan dies

Gene Colan was the artist behind the best of the favourite comic strip of my teens, Howard The Duck. As I was growing up I marvelled - I mean literally marvelled - at his abilities as a draughtsman and storyteller. There was no bigger contrast in comics than that between an issue of a comic that was regularly drawn by Gene Colan and a filler issue drawn by anyone else. Gene's art looked real. I mean REAL. Anyone else looked like some sort of cartoonist filling in for the master.

I read, and still keep and treasure, Gene Colan's Doctor Strange, Daredevil, Tomb Of Dracula, Howard The Duck, Avengers and Batman. I also have fondest memories of his quirkiest strips including Slow Glass, a painted strip in a 1970s Marvel sci fi comic based on a short story (I'll have fun finding that in the boxes in storage tomorrow).

Gene Colan's comic strip artwork deserves to be in gallery collections, he is such a significant part of 20th century popular art. In tribute I shall dig out his stuff tomorrow and read it. Essential Howard The Duck, it could be you.

Kev F

When Businessmen Go Clubbing - more comics by kids

Kev F's Comic Art Masterclasses (and the Scottish Falsetto Socks) have seen me doing some hell of a travelling this week. My new car has an extra 1000 miles on the clock since Monday, from Clevedon via Bourne in Lincolnshire and Harrogate in North Yorkshire. And it's the various primary schools of Bourne that are largely responsible for the comic book covers below. These titles are suggested by the kids in the class, and they've all contributed to the drawings on the cover, a copy of which they take away, containing a strip by every one of them and caricatures of all of them.

These show what is going through the minds of 9-11 year old kids in Lincolnshire on an average day. Zombies, pigs, clowns, hamsters, jelly babies, and business men going clubbing.

Along the way I managed, for the first time in ages, to mistake girls for boys not once but twice at two successive schools. So apologies to Sabrina, who I called "that boy there with all the hair" and Georgia who I genuinely thought was a boy right to the end of drawing her caricature, at which point I had to double check her name (I had earlier referred to her table as "the girls' table" then corrected myself by saying to her "sorry, I realise you're a boy"). Year 6, the year that invented androgyny.

If you'd like me to teach your kids, do please get in touch.

RECOMMENDED COMIC BOOKS & GRAPHIC NOVELS for Comic Art Masterclass students, teachers and librarians

Friday 17 June 2011

Lookey Likey: Dr Who USA v Dr Who Adventures

It's not the most original idea in the world to take an MC Escher picture and stick your character in it. So I'm taking no credit for being the first comic artist to stick the Doctor into an MC Escher design. Likewise I'm sure the American publishers IDW aren't advertising their new Doctor Who Annual as the second comic to stick the Doctor into an MC Escher design. Here's their cover, dated June 2011...

...and here's my spread from Doctor Who Adventures, drawn at the end of 2010:

The originals looking like this:

Wednesday 15 June 2011

Captain Clevedon is underway

I'm enjoying working on a comic with other artists for the first time in ages. I've allocated pages of the new Captain Clevedon comic to 4 artists who have volunteered to work on a profit share basis (which, we all realise, may mean nobody ever making any money from this) and have started drawing pages myself. It is, to all intents and purposes, a hobby comic and great fun it is too. Obviously I far prefer getting paid to write and draw stuff, but since my Match and Doctor Who work has got thinner on the ground, and the Comic Art Masterclasses and Scottish Falsetto Sock shows are filling up my work schedule, this is as good a way as any of keeping my comic creating side alive. And, you never know, people might actually like this comic when it comes out. Here's a sketch by me from the front cover (background still in production).

Any artists who fancy drawing a slice of his bit of comic book history, email me links to your artwork (don't send attachments).

Saturday 11 June 2011

Your Bum Is Under Under Arrest - more comics by kids

Once more the Comic Art Masterclass has seen me out and about teaching kids all over the country how to write and draw comic strips. These are the front covers of the comic books, each one containing a strip by every kid in the class, produced by pupils in schools in Cardiff, Gosport, Glasgow, Malmesbury & Bromsgrove. Click to enlarge, and you can see lots more on my website.

If you would like me to come to your school, library, college or art centre to teach you or your kids the fine art of comic strip, please don't hesitate to get in touch.

RECOMMENDED COMIC BOOKS & GRAPHIC NOVELS for Comic Art Masterclass students, teachers and librarians

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