Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Can he fix it? Crikey, he can!

Occasionally my work on Bob the Builder turns up an interesting and unusual design request, more often than not when we have a new character making a cameo in the show. This design was done for an episode recently and featured a cheeky, chirpy Antipodean adventurer who bore than a passing resemblance to the late great danger-seeker, Mr Steve Irwin. I know it's a little late in the day after Steve's passing but felt obliged to put it on the blog for all to see, having stumbled across it in my sketchbook. Watched his memorial service last week. Truly top bloke and bless his little daughter for her brave speech.

R.I.P Stevo

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Question for Americans!

Hullo all!

And your question is: In the US, do you have the popular children's nursery rhyme, OLD MACDONALD'S FARM? It's a standard over here in the UK, but am not sure whether it's something that's ever "crossed over". There's a bit in the chorus where we have an "EE AYE EE AYE OH", which in any world would be a regional English dialect. If you can let me know what you know of said rhyme in the States it'd be much appreciated as I'm working on a book proposal that could potentially be published in the US. Obviously, the audience knowing the original rhyme is quite pivotal.

Cheers m'dears!


Monday, September 18, 2006

WARNING: Fat Man on Trampoline alert

So, Emma and I were asked to join the North East's leading animation studio's director's for dinner over the weekend, Niel and Dianne Bushnell of Qurios Entertainment.

Imagine our surprise when we discovered it was just a ruse by Mr Bushnell to get me to leap for his amusement on his (not his children's) trampoline. If anyone is interested in cutting edge computer animation in the North East of England, concept development in gaming, or has even a passing interest in watching a grown man leap around on a trampoline doing "snake hip" twists while wearing a pink leotard, might I direct you to contact Mr Bushnell directly and he'll take care of all your animation, gaming and girlie needs.

Thanks to Mr Bushnell for the following:


Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Funny Farm




These paintings were done as part of an art show some time ago, my first individual one as I recall in Sam's Place Coffee House in Middlesbrough, UK. My favourite is still probably PIG PILE, the middle piece. They're all pretty big pieces and you might be able to see a peculiar texture to the artwork. This is derived from the fact that they are all painted on roofing felt, a surface that I love to paint on as it lends itself well to my drybrush technique when I'm working in layers. I used to do a heck of a lot of work on sheets of sandpaper, getting the same look, but I was limited to the scale I could work to. Roofing felt took that obstacle away. Plus I have the funkiest looking garden shed in Christendom now!

Dug these pieces out as they make me think of the kids. Not that my kids look like farmyard animals, you understand. But these paintings are pretty kid friendly, unlike some of my others. Emma and I are off to see the consultant tomorrow to find out what our next pesky baby is playing at in Mummy's tummy. Due date 8th October. Woohah!!!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Just call me Groundhog Jobling!

This keeps on happening...

Sunday Times Article

Article appeared in this weekend's Sunday Times. Once more I'm credited as being the "creator" of Bob. I wouldn't mind but this time I even phoned up the journalist beforehand asking if I could proof read the story and ensure I wasn't being named as "the creator" - I was told not to worry that it was all in order. I wasn't allowed to read it though. Ah well, I've tried correcting people and it doesn't work. I'm resigned to the fact that these things are out of my hands now, certainly not going to lose any sleep over disgruntled "creators" out there who may feel I've nicked their title. Nice piece though, and the journalist Paul was a lovely chap. Just hope it helps towards our selling of the house.

Further to last posting, yep, we're looking to set up an official Frankenstein's Cat production blog, edited and approved by myself, Mackinnon & Saunders and the BBC. Things need to be checked first re: what we can talk about, but it should be pretty groovy and hopefully insightful.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Le Chat de Frankenstein

Off to Paris this week to team up with the nice folk at Kayenta studios, the co-producers of Frankenstein's Cat. Since we started actual preproduction at last a fortnight ago things feel like they have a real momentum, which is terrific. I'm particularly enjoying the feeling of freedom at getting stuck into designing the world of Nine & Co. In fact, it sends me back to those early designs I did on Bob The Builder (or Bob le Bricoleur as he is en Francais!) That's the point in animation where as a designer you really feel as close to God as you can get, outside of going to church, anyway...

If I had the time I'd be spending it producing large scale mood piece paintings depicting the "world" of the show, but I shall hopefully fit those in as time allows. I do intend to get some paintings done during production. Should provide a colourful production diary if nothing else, but should hopefully be a springboard to inspire the background artists.

Fly out on Wednesday morning but shall be checking in on blog while away.

Sunday, September 03, 2006

WYRDWOOD - "Chapter One" and "An unwelcome interruption"

Next passage up on Tales From The Wyrdwood

If you're following the story, please don't be confused. "Chapter One" is the opening chapter of the 'book within a book' that Emily is reading, and before long she's interrupted anyway. Should make perfect sense upon reading. I hope.

Many thanks to the kind folks who've been following and commenting on the story, including Ian Culbard, Justin Parpan and Larry to name a few. Don't feel put off by the length of it if you haven't been following it, just jump on board - the chapters are quite manageable I promise!