Doodles in the margin from an artist living and working in the Scottish Borders.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Scott's View

Scott's View, oil on board, 16" x 12".

The Eildon Hills near Melrose are something of a landmark both geographically and personally. You can see their distinctive molar shape on the horizon from practically anywhere in or near the Merse, just as much of a presence as Cheviot and its foothills.

Sir Walter Scott - ever so extensive author, inventor of Scotland, manager of Heart of Midlothian and noted punctuationophobe - enjoyed this view so much and so often that his horses were accustomed to stop here without his bidding. Legend has it that the horses drawing the funeral cortege paused to allow their master one final look at the hills. Unfortunately it's not true. The horses did stop, but history records it as "an accident."

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Rust Never Sleeps 4

Wood & Iron iii, oil on board, 18" x 18".

This is a larger version of a work I did a couple of years ago (below). I took photographs of these sea defences on the Norfolk coast about two years ago, and have found them interesting to work with ever since. I made a photographic triptych first, and then decided to paint them as individual images. I used acrylic I think, although it might have been oil, on hardboard. They're only about eight or nine inches square, but the larger board meant I could explore some of the colours and forms in more detail. The colours, considering it was just timber and iron left to weather, were remarkable. That's why rust is interesting, see...

Groyne 3, oil on board, 9" x 9".

(Coughs quietly: I'm not sure I don't prefer the smaller, earlier one...)

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Having A Good Old Sing Song Around the Piano

We were flicking through the TV channels for some idle thrills to ameliorate our post-World Cup ennui and came across the excellent Rich Hall's documentary about the South and its portrayal in popular culture and film. It was very good indeed, and worth digging round in iPlayer to find (BBC4). If it's there.

Anyway, he was talking about this photograph taken at Sam Phillips' Sun Studios.

"That's Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins, in the same room.

"Let me just say that again.

"That's Elvis Presley. Johnny Cash. Jerry Lee Lewis. And Carl Perkins. In the same room.

"If you're a student of theology, that's like having Jesus ... Buddha ... Mohammed and Carl Perkins in the same room."

Sunday, 11 July 2010

It Comes In Colours

Some modest publicity from the blog at Forbidden Planet, no less. The Nu-Earth fanzine with Matt & my (Matt & mine? Matt's and my?) Dredd v. Who in it, as mentioned below, and in pretty sharp company, I might add.

Thursday, 8 July 2010

Dredding It

Since the whole fanzine thing is out and about and circulating in cyberspace and the real world, I've uploaded to my website the whole of the finished set of strips I contributed. This was, as I've said before, another collaboration with Matt Craig, who wrote the script, originally to star Tom Baker but I couldn't bring myself to 'off' the great man...

I like working on Matt's stuff, he's a real old fashioned love for comics, and there's a warmth and humour in his work. Even when blowing people's heads off.

The full fanzine can be found here* for downloading - it's slightly confusing to read as the layout is for printing out. There's some very splendid work in there.

I was looking at "Project X" the other day (my long narrative comic strip, which tails off from completed pages to a few pencil panels to a 'shooting script' to an outline to the ending which is vaguely in my head) and pondering whether it would ever be finished, how much I really want to finish it, what that means I have to give up for the time it takes, and generally felt like a faffing dilettante. Today I got the latest collected Hellboy through the post (art by Richard Corben, Duncan Fegredo, Jason Shawn Alexander and La Mignola himself) and ay chihuahua, some things make you feel you've a long way to go.

*I had a link for the download but it's been taken down. Ah, well.


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