monster battle on dartmoor

While Stuart and I visiting the Reeves on Dartmoor, Philip Reeve and I spent a morning at Widecombe-in-the-Moor Primary School, engaging in FIERCE MONSTER COMBAT. I first got the idea when Neill Cameron and I pitted one of his Mo-bots against my sheep, Vern. And funnily, we were following Neill, who had made a Mo-bot visit to the same school earlier in the year. (See Neill’s write-up here.)

Photo by Sarah Reeve

Philip and I had the kids help us design monsters, then took turns getting suggestions for ways to kit up our monsters for battle. Here’s Philip’s monster in full warrior gear. I seem to remember the kids’ intention for the banana weaponry was to make my monster slip in her killer high heels. Lucky Philip got to draw TEN mouths on his beast.

When I’m drawing in front of lots of people, I try to strike a balance between drawing well and drawing very fast, and generally speed tends to win out. But I was very impressed that Philip could draw well AND fast (although I’d like to add that he drew a bit more slowly than me, but not tortoise-paced), maybe I’ll pick up that skill someday. Here’s a comic jam we did together, again, taking suggestions from the kids. Panel One by Philip:

Panel Two by me:

Panel Three by Philip:

Panel Four by me (Okay, keep in mind that we really were running out of time by this point!):

Here’s Philip with his original monster design. We very much liked one of the youngest children’s suggestion for a name, Mr Monster M’Leg. Sort of like ‘Milord’, but better.

And my Mr Messy the Fifth, who lives up to his name:

Thanks for having us come visit, Widecombe Primary! We had fun seeing your comics jams, and hope you get to make lots more.

Edit: A lovely card just arrived at the Fleece Station from the school, complete with lots of drawings of their comic characters. Thanks so much!!

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