March 01, 2014

Guff What I do.

2014 so far has been an interesting and difficult year. Unfortunately, life isn't easy at times and there are massive obstacles in my near future I need to overcome, they've proven to be emotionally draining and quite difficult to confront. I'm doing everything I can to help things a long but there's a real element of uncertainty that makes things a bit tougher than they need to be and it's going to continue to be difficult. Never losing faith though, it's just going to keep being uphill for quite a while longer.

Art-wise, I'm working at a few things at the moment. I wrapped up my 2nd Scoundrels issue early this year and if you missed it you can start reading it here. I had everything on my plate during the update rotation and had nothing short of a hellish time trying to get everything done on time. As a result I'm pretty much going to distance myself from Scoundrels for the rest of the year until I know I'll have time to really contribute again.

Right now though!

Most important current work is a big freelance job that's been a bunch of fun even though it's quite a lot to get through. I'm nearing my half-way mark with the workload and I've learnt a lot so far(including shining light on weaknesses I wasn't aware of before.)I'm grateful for the opportunity and I'm enjoying the challenge- it's not the kind of job you land easily so I'm quite eager to put the extra work in.

My focus on making sure I do a good and steady job on this has meant I've had to set a few other things to the side, including Felicity- which I hope to get updating again in early March. The other project I'm having to delay is Wayward, my story pitch I plan on getting under noses throughout the year. Time is the most important ingredient for a story so it's not a bad thing that I've had to delay production; the story is still taking a final shape and visually, I've barely scratched the surface. I'm keen to get started though, I've spent the last 8 years honing a craft and I feel like Wayward will be my first proper step towards showing what I can do.

The other active-project I have right now is doing odd bits of art for Yogscast And The Mystical Dreamtower, a 2d game that should be coming out on early-access(a BETA release of sorts)very soon. Games have always been my hobby and obsession so I've enjoyed my time working with Studio Flashback immensely, Games are goliath undertakings and it's hard to fully appreciate that until you're actually in the engine room helping piece it together. It's a craft I've always respected and admired but more so now having worked on this game and Rock Star Rising last year.

That leads me to another project beginning this year, all being well. The whole reason I began working with Studio Flashback on Yogscast And The Mystical Dreamtower was because I reached out to the founder about making a game together. That game hasn't begun just yet. But over the past year since asking, it has grown quite fully formed in my mind as a 2D platformer called Rascal N Tink. It's something that I'd love to get to prototype stage by years end but as I said, games are a massive amount of work and we may be needed elsewhere before the year is up.

Lastly! I'm trying to educate and better my understanding of business and reaching out to the many organisations we have set up here in Northern Ireland to help do so. I've got a meeting next week that will give me a chance to really test myself on where I want to go and what I want to do. It's going to require some soul-searching and for me to somehow articulate my passion in words rather than pictures(something I've never been too good at.)

Oh and regarding any previous stuff I'd said I would work on- Magpie springs to mind. Not working on them any more. There was always more support for Magpie than say, Felicity but I swore to myself this year would be about the pitch and that means as soon as my Freelance commitments quiet down a bit- it's full steam on Wayward. I hope this doesn't disappoint anyone(though I'm fairly sure it won't affect any one!)


December 07, 2013

Yogscast Simon DLC

The UKs most watched Youtube channel; The Yogscast are doing a charity drive this month in aid of Special Effect, a UK based charity that specialises in providing support for gamers who aren't as able-bodied.

A really cool part of this drive is a piece of Downloadable content for SONIC & ALL STARS RACING TRANSFORMED for PC(a game I highly recommend)that puts Yogscast favourite - Simon Lane, right into the game as a playable character. It's extra cool because I've been working with Studio Flashback on the videogame Yogscast And The Mystical Dream Tower and for the charity character they have used our design. Think I speak for everyone at Flashback that helped to design the characters- we're chuffed to have added in some small way to a piece of special content going towards an amazing cause.

Small World

Out of all the 'timewasting' websites and social media you can expose yourself to nowadays, there is one I feel is more useful than many give it credit.


It's not just food pictures and self-indulgence, far from it!
As a creative, Twitter is the ultimate source of inspiration, advice and promotion.

Ever since I joined twitter, the working comic professionals on there have been nothing but helpful and supportive. I've been able to talk at length with them about every intimate detail of pitching your own comic to the daily life you can expect if you're successful. Simply by tweeting them to ask. They're open and honest and always willing to share the information you might of thought was a 'secret'. I can't recommend it enough for networking with those who have earned a seat in the halls you're aiming for.

As a teenager I felt like Northern Ireland was a dead end for comics and it wasn't until I joined twitter a few years ago that I realised we actually have so many talented working professionals here and even more down South. Not only are there so many, I also quickly learnt they're not out for blood; they actually want to help each other succeed.

So thanks to Twitter, not just a waste of time!

June 08, 2013


So since deciding I was going to do a Magpie comic(which I'm starting work on in the latter half of 2013)I've been tweaking and developing the character design alongside brainstorming the script. It's been a very on and off thing, in between all of the work dividing my attention right now but it's also been pretty fun! My Magpie design was always one I was pretty happy with and is certainly my most popular character on DeviantArt so it's been a new kind of experience to try to evolve the design, given I've already had some people voice opposition at certain design tweaks I wanted to make(over the top eye-goggles seem to be a design feature I really shouldn't change.)

It's been really interesting too because I've found myself needing to make some edits because the design must now be informed by the narrative. Example! I did a redesign a little while back that I was going to try to stick to- one of the new additions to this redesign was a much more sporty-shoe heel to her boots. The idea was that her costume should be althletic and not get in the way of her momentum and freedom when moving- something I'd established early on would be a definite aspect to how I would show the character in action. As I started to develop the various scenarios in the script I was left with a pretty common problem of the character needing to get from her house to Lisburn, or Belfast or any place that you'd basically need a car to get to. This was when I introduced Roller-blades to the character which quickly became one of my favourite things about the visual element to the design- the action scenes and abilities the roller-blades give her in the script will be a really awesome and unique aspect to the book when I get to drawing it. I'm looking forward to that!


April 19, 2013

So I promised myself I'd pitch something in '13

I'm going to be using everything I've learnt and hopefully with any luck create and pitch the best child-friendly adventure comic I can manage. It'll be a busy few months spending all the free time I have on it(I may be more of a hermit than usual!)I'll continue to do Felicity every Monday and Scoundrels will still see my contribution, not to mention there are a few freelance commitments I've already signed on for but aside from that! It's straight down the line to develop this idea and getting it out there.

Why a Child-friendly book?
I've never been especially interested in hyper gore, or zombies and horror and that's mostly all I see in comics. And for kids? There really isn't much of the same substance and meaning as there is to be found across the board in all other kids media. There are some truly fantastic cartoon shows and television shows that have proven appeal to all ages, even though they're made for kids. I don't see that so much in kids comics. Can I try to change that?

Sometimes, especially with kids comics, I feel like a comic book is limited to the genre- it's not as grand or epic and sprawling as a good kids book, or a good movie. I know it exists, so I know it's possible- I just don't understand why there aren't more of them. Can it be possible for a comic book to be as imaginative and captivating as other mediums? Can it be possible for a comic book to transcend all age brackets and just tell a great story?

I'm going to try to find out if I can answer that, that's the goal at least. I'll aim high and hopefully where ever the arrow pierces- will be a worthwhile read.


April 14, 2013


Think it might be fun to come back to this and add in edits and line work as it all develops to finished work. For now here's the first pass thumbs and second pass thumbs!

March 12, 2013

New Project - Concepts

I've been working on a Zelda-inspired project called 'The Journey' for quite a while and despite putting a lid on the story and design, I had decided I would shelve it for now, mostly because I couldn't meet my ambition for it just yet.

In the months since I saw the show Avatar - The Last Airbender which fell so perfectly in line with the worlds I had imagined for 'The Journey'. Some of that inspiration prompted me to expand on what I already had on the table and it has birthed a few ideas- one of which is playing with the notion of side-stories that might connect in some way with my eventual plans for 'The Journey'.
Additionally, one of my oldest projects and first ever world-building attempt was a story called 'Broken Falcon' which starred a bird-race who were driven to the edge of extinction by a powerful modern enemy. The designs above are the bringing-together of those two ideas into a new short story.

Early days an'dat.
This will be realized, whenever I can, as a short comic. I still don't feel ready to do 'The Journey' justice but I need to scratch my itch for a Zelda tribute and if I can nod my hat to the excellence found in Avatar - The Last Airbender all at the same time, then it'll be for better!