just before i head to scotland…

Loads to blog about before I head off tomorrow to the Wigtown Book Festival! Come along on the Saturday, you can come first to my event, then Polly Dunbar‘s.

**SALE!** I haven’t wanted to sell any of my Morris the Mankiest Monster illustrations, but I agreed to let one go to the Facing Africa charity auction. It’s happening THIS SATURDAY in Bath, and you can go along or also bid online. If my books ever become household names, this one will be from my first picture book with David Fickling and WORTH A LOT OF MONEY! (Or you can just keep it cos it’s nice, hehe.) It’s for an excellent cause, please don’t let someone walk away with that picture at a bargain-basement price. It’s Morris reading his comic in bed…

Place your bid now!

Congratulations to tBK Mag on its 30th issue! Vern and Derek the Sheep celebrated by taking over THE WHOLE MAGAZINE (although occasionally they deign to share the page with Jamie Smart’s Chaffy, just to make him stop squeaking). Here’s the first panel of a Vern and Derek Comics Jam.

My super-silly studio mate Gary Northfield‘s going to post the second panel on his blog.

A huge thank you to Sam Reeve for his fantastic drawing of Vern and Lettuce rocking out, and a very cool drawing of a tractor, with a miniature toy tractor used as a model. You rock, Sam!

Sam’s da, Philip, said Vern and Lettuce has done wonders for Sam’s reading, and he passed his spelling test at school the other day partly thanks to them: ‘One of the words was ‘government’ and he worked out that it’s ‘Go Vern! ment’ and now has no trouble remembering it.’

Last night I went to hear Philippa Perry talk about her new comic, Couch Fiction. The story takes us into a psychotherapy session between Philippa, the therapist, and her client who has a nasty habit he wants to break. It’s very human, she lets us see the therapist making mistakes. And we can read it on two levels (like a Rupert Bear comic!): either we can just read the story going on in the comic panels, or we can follow the more detailed analysis going on in the footnotes. A fascinating read, and great to see the psychology and comics world coming together. Here’s the doodle I made of Philippa during the talk:

The audience was full of people interested in psychology and I didn’t see a single comics person in the crowd. The other guy who was talking about his psychology book did a lot of the speaking and we didn’t get to hear much at all about the comic. But three of us went out afterward for drinks with Philippa and got to get to know her a bit better. (Funnily enough, she reminds me a lot of my art tutor from college, Janet Woolley.) Philippa said she’d try to come along next Monday, 27 Sept to my studio mate Ellen Lindner‘s talk at Laydeez Do Comics.

…Speaking of which, last night about eight of us WoM contributors got together at Ellen’s house to sign comics for all the people who supported making of the comic by pre-ordering!

Here’s a preview video Ellen made:

WoM Vimeo link

I owe the fact my morning sketch was rubbish to not going home at a reasonable hour.

And here’s my morning sketch, drawn in about 15 minutes on Goose Green in East Dulwich. I didn’t even have time to draw the trees, just the space between the trees. Hopefully I’ll get to do some more hard-core landscape drawing in Dumfriesshire.

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