Monday, 31 December 2007

Paper Town

Cardboard cut-out town lit with a desk lamp.

Big Orange Town

Saturday, 29 December 2007

Two Handmade Models

Pinny Pinhead. Made from cardboard, modelling clay, ball bearings and pins.

Pinny Pinhead

Jack Flash. Handmade out of wood, plastic, paper and modelling clay.

Jack Flash

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Christmas Card Designs

Five card designs. I do my own every year. It's always a chore to think up another Christmas design, as nearly everything you can think of has been done a million times already. I try to avoid penguins wearing scarfs.

Oh No!

Christmas Card

Christmas Card 2008

Christmas Card

Stan Gets a Sled

Tuesday, 27 November 2007

The Wire

What would it be like, I wonder, to have the omniscient ability to observe the inner workings of a modern American city? To see every level of a decaying, crime-ridden, urban metropolis in exact detail, from the streets, right up through every social level to the mayor's office itself. Wonder no longer, because HBO's TV series, The Wire delivers this ability.

Through four series, The Wire, has placed a microscope on crime, education, poverty, greed, and the political system, while simultaneously showing us exactly how these disparate pieces fit into the larger widescreen picture. Starting small, The Wire has expanded outwards with each series, until it has presented us with an epic, multilayered narrative, interweaving a teeming cast of street people, police, drug dealers, children, teachers and politicians. The thriving drug trade, the dying dockside industries, the collapsing education system, policing, and politics, have all come under the show's scrutiny.

The first series cleverly paralleled the structure and bureaucracy of the drug trade with the police force investigating it. Unlike any other crime show I can think of, The Wire shows us, time and time again, how investigations are stalled, even shut down for short-term political gain. Many of the police characters appear to have no interest in solving crimes. Crime detection is secondary to career advancement, and The Wire shows us exactly how this situation has come about.

The Wire is particularly good at showing just how interconnected people's lives are. Nothing happens in isolation. Small events in a character's life can ripple out to cause major changes across the social boundaries. The show's great strength lies in its ability to balance the small details of each character's story, against the huge unfolding narrative that contains it, without ever losing its place.

All reviews of The Wire come filled with superlatives, and the show is often lazily compared with the novels of Balzac, whose stories are similarly socially realistic and expansive. The reason critics have to reach so far into the past and into another medium for comparisons, is that there has never been anything on television quite as ambitious and brilliantly realised as The Wire. That being the case, it's shameful that the show is so little seen. Contrary to what you might think, The Wire is not difficult to watch, it bursts with tragedy, sorrow and the darkest humour. The Wire is an all too very human story, universal to us all. Catch The Wire.

Wednesday, 21 November 2007

Edie

Edie needs love. Edie was made out of a fruit juice carton, bottle tops, modeling clay, ball-bearings, and tubing rescued out of a skip.

Edie

Thursday, 15 November 2007

Famous Monsters

George Bush as a zombie. Night of the Living Rednecks.
Zombie George

Putin the vampire.
Putin The Vampire

Wednesday, 14 November 2007

Christopher Fowler's Bryant and May Detective Novels

Recently I've been enjoying Christopher Fowler's Bryant and May detective novels. I'm a big crime/mystery novel fan, and as I find that this is one of those areas of fiction that American's tend to do best, I was pleased to find an English author who wasn't, as many do, aping the US style. Fowler wonderfully mashes together genuine English themes and ideas, mixing the arcane mythologies of London with an Ealing comedy movie feel. The fantastical elements of the novel's storylines never tip over into the supernatural, but still manage to summon up a very particular eerie London atmosphere, where the past is always pressing on the present and the dead are not gone, but merely out of sight. The malign influences of the streets and landscape of urban London play a big part in the novels, much like they do in the writings of Peter Ackroyd or Iain Sinclair: authors who clearly influence Fowler.

The novels concern the Met's Peculiar Crime's Unit, led by London's longest serving detectives, Arthur Bryant and John May: two elderly men who should have retired years ago, but somehow remain on the force, despite having been policemen since the war. This would stretch credibility in a realistic novel, but in the world of Bryant and May, such things seem more than probable. The stories include a series of murder's by a faceless phantom at the Palace Theatre (during the blitz), and the killing of various vacuous celebrities by a masked highwayman (in the present day). In each case, the strange psychological architecture and history of London, plays a part, influencing, and perhaps even possessing the novel's characters. The novels do vary in quality, but they are all entertainingly readable. I recommend the two best of the series: Full Dark House and Ten Second Staircase.

Monday, 12 November 2007

John From Cincinnati

I don't watch much TV, but what I do watch tends, these days to be from the US: just a handful of shows, which include The Shield, The Wire, Lost, and Deadwood. My latest favourite is John From Cincinnati, David Milch's follow-up to Deadwood. John From Cincinnati is a wonderful show, sadly already cancelled after a mere ten episodes. This doesn't surprise me, as this show, a strange mixture of family drama, surfing, and mysticism, is often difficult to follow and offers no easy answers to its mysterious questions.

In a sense, John From Cincinnati, is a familiar idea: a dysfunctional family is visited by a strange, stranger, who proceeds by his influence to correct the ills of the family. As the series progresses, this benign influence begins to extend, not only to the surrounding community, but out, it is hinted, to the rest of the planet as well.

The mysterious John Monad, with his comically expressive face, described by another character as "A tall drink of water with a poodle hair cut," appears apparently from nowhere, doesn't know how to shake hands or cross a road safely, but is able to produce out of his previously empty pocket, a roll of money, a credit card (with unlimited credit on it), and a phone (with infinite minutes). Strange things happen during his visit: a man begins to levitate, a dead bird returns to life, a brain-damaged boy is healed. John is not able to talk directly about himself or the events he puts into motion. He can only repeat back in variations what others have said to him, creating much Johnspeak: quotable and oft-repeated phrases which he's obliged to fall back on.

Not for the casual viewer, John From Cincinnati demands concerted attention. It is often annoyingly inscrutable, but it is also amusing, tender, and heartrending. The innocent John, contrasts sharply with the very fallible humans who make up the rest of the extended cast, enhancing the otherworldly quality that the character has. This strange white figure has already, at least in my mind, become an iconic TV character. It's sad that we'll never see him again.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Two Daleks

I'm must be obsessed with daleks, as they keep showing up in my work.

Scottish dalek
Scottish Dalek

Gay dalek.
Gay Dalek

Sunday, 4 November 2007

Business Card

Business Card

My business card design. I print these out from my own printer on card, and then draw a little doodle on the back of each one, so that each person who receives them gets their own tiny piece of Darryl art.

Thursday, 1 November 2007

Report From a Better Place

Well the first Super-Sam and John-of-the-Night comic strip has been a success. Now all I have to do is sit down and draw one every week (which I've no doubt I can do). The best approach would be to do a number of them all at once, and so get way ahead of the deadline. This will leave me with plenty of time to work on other projects. If the strip is popular, there is the chance that Forbidden Planet (who are a publisher as well as a retail chain), will want to put it out in book form. This would, of course, thrill me no end, but one thing at a time. Baby steps. Baby steps.

For me it would be so wonderful if I could just work from home, and never have to do any care work again. My failing as an artist has always been in the area of self-promotion, not the quality of my work. Let's hope I can change this now. What I must do is make sure I stay in contact with other like-minded artists, and not drift out of the scene, as I did before. I'm planning to go to the Leeds Thought Bubble event on the tenth of November, and a number of people I know should be there. Will you?

Saturday, 27 October 2007

Super-Sam and John-of-the-Night

Character designs for comic strip.

Imagine a vain, egotistical, slightly stupid liberal character, teamed up with a neurotic, paranoid, but smarter, right-winger. This the idea behind Super-Sam and John-of-the-Night. Yes, they're basically the Superman and Batman archetypes that we've seen a million times already, but who couldn't have fun with this idea, and anyway, I haven't done it before.

The strip will be appearing weekly, every Tuesday, on the Forbidden Planet blog.

Super-Sam and John-of-the-Night

Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Two Views of a Town

Colour and black and white versions of the same image. Pencil, pen, then photoshop for the colours and effects.

Colour Town and Cars

Black and White Town

Friday, 19 October 2007

Uncle Bob at the Earth's Core

Three pages from an eight page strip.


Uncle Bob at the Earth's Core (1)

Uncle Bob at the Earth's Core (2)

Uncle Bob at the Earth's Core (3)

Check out the full story by following the link below
.
Myebook - Uncle Bob Adventures - click here to open my ebook

Tuesday, 16 October 2007

Yorkshire Hill

Pen on paper, then scanned into photoshop.

Hill

Thursday, 11 October 2007

Town and Hills

For various reasons I've been offline for a month, but now I'm back and will be posting regularly again.

Town and Hills

Wednesday, 18 July 2007

Canvas Painting

Canvas being worked on. I've done this one before, but this is another version, done as a commision. The first version I sent as a gift to my brother in Australia, after which, I received an offer to buy it from a client in the US. Hence this new version. However, I was never entirely happy with the previous painting, and so relish the opportunity to have another go.

Canvas

Monday, 9 July 2007

Outside the Pepper Hotel

WARNING! If one is intending to stay at the Pepper Hotel, approach only from the Morgan's bar direction, and never, ever, shop at Jimbo's Food Hall, as there are dangerous wild buildings on that street.

Outside The Pepper Hotel

Thursday, 5 July 2007

Monday, 2 July 2007

A Raven, a Pixie and a Spaceman

Beware the Red Raven. He Stalks The City.
He Stalks The City

Book Pixie. Small press magazine cover I did some years ago.
Book Pixie

My attempt to draw Dracula somehow turned into a pink space man. Go figure!
spaceman

Sunday, 1 July 2007

The Evening Street

More inversion of colours, especially the lines, changed from black to white and blue.

Evening Street

Friday, 29 June 2007

Lost Pic 4

Mr. Eko, portrayed by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje. Nigerian priest. Former warlord and drug dealer. Lost.

Mr. Eko

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Stormtrooper

Handmade Star Wars Figure. Plastic fruit juice bottle, paper and glue, modelling clay. About six inches tall. Now property of Jonathan Edwards.

Stormtrooper

Vroom!

Vroom

Thursday, 21 June 2007

Fantastic Four and Galactus

The release of the new Fantastic Four film has inspired me to draw this...

Here we see the Fantastic Four negotiating with Galactus, urging him not to eat the planet Earth, but to stick to low carb foods, such as asteroids, instead.

Possibly I've gone a bit too day-glo with this. I can't decide.

FF and Galactus

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

Four Frames

The same image, diffrently coloured and amended four times, using photoshop. Pencil and pen before being scanned into the computer. I don't know how many times I've thought about this idea, and then not done it, because of the work involved. Well worth the stiff neck I've ended up with after all the effort.

Four Frames

Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Death at Stark House

An exercise in style. Pen, pencils and then photoshop. I've become very interested in inverting images with software to see what the effect will be. I often find that the result is better than my original version. Best seen large.

Stark House

Monday, 18 June 2007

Lost TV Pic (3)

Michael Dawson, portrayed by Harold Perrineau Jr. Construction worker and aspiring artist. Father of Walt. Traitor and murderer. Lost.

Could be the guy in the coffin? Who knows?

Micheal

Sunday, 17 June 2007

The Streets of El Diablo

Very much a continuation of themes I've been mining for years: streets, buildings, outsized objects, cars, rocks and mountains. What's not to like?

Pencil. pen and then photoshop for an inordinate amount of messing around.

diablo town

Saturday, 16 June 2007

Lost TV Pics

Dr. Christian Shephard, portrayed by John Terry. Father of Jack. Spinal surgeon and alcoholic. Deceased. Lost.

Pencils and photoshop.

Christian Shephard

Thursday, 14 June 2007

FrankenClint

From the imaginary film, Frankenstein and the Gunslinger From Hell.

Franken-Clint

Tuesday, 12 June 2007

Three Favourite Photos

Reflection in canal, turned upside down for better effect. What look like stars are merely bits of foam. No Photoshop was used. This is exactly how my Lomo LC 1 saw it.

Reflection Lomo


To get this photo, I stood on the edge of the canal and took a shot of my feet. The mirror-clear water reflected the building on the other side of the canal and the flash from my camera. The illusion of standing over a drop was so powerful that I thought I might fall in.

Abyss


Taken on the hospital grounds with my Lomo on my way back from a shift.

Floating Sixes