Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Happy New Year...oh, wait, that was a good few weeks ago now. I had a busy December which meant working solidly to get a short story illustrated for the legendary Pat Mills. Of course, I didnt mind, the chance to work with such a staple of the industry does not present itself very often. I can see why he has the 'Godfather of British Comics' tagline, because he turned a very grim poem into a very grim, but meaningful, story. When I first read the WW1 poem 'Dead man's Dump' on it's own, I must admit to not being overly enthused by it. Whilst it was undeniably very gritty, there didn't seem to be anything to grab onto to illustrate in a sequential way. Well, I need not have worried, Mr Mills used a very clever mechanic throughout... using the unfeeling, untouchable General Haig as a foil to the horrors of the battlefield, which gave the story a great deal of emotional impact. It was a battle to do, as I put a fair amount of effort into it over a relatively short period of time, had to, to hit the deadline. Anyway, im pleased with the result, Pat calls it a 'Mini Classic' so I can't wait to see it in print. Coming from Macmillan, a US publisher --- I'll let you know when it's out. Amongst that lot, I had 7 character busts to do too for a few collectors, phew, times to put my feet up and get some reading done ;)

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Let's get through these cobwebs shall we? Hello all, it's been a while since I posted on here. There's been a few things going on at DH towers, although they are in various stages of limbo, awaiting the green light. It's best not to elaborate just yet so here's a recent commission in stages (by way of posting somekind of image to the post) Also, I've been spending money like water recently, so in a futile effort to get some money back into the bank I had a go at setting up an online shop. I must be the only person to have tried setting up one of these and actually ending up with everything in my cart, twice over. http://blackboarboutique.bigcartel.com/ Well, that's it for a few months I think. See you both again soon.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013


Hello Folks, Here are a couple of blank covers I've done recently. I'll be doing blank cover watercolours at the upcoming Earls Court London Film & Comic Con, so if you fancy one let me know in advance, chances are I won't be able to knock one out while you wait. I'll have a selection of original art pages for sale too, including this Hellboy A3

Look forward to seeing some of you there.
cheers
Dave

Wednesday, June 05, 2013

FANTASTIC BOUCQS TO BUY

Warning: subliminal advertising included, reading this could be costly.

I am always amazed at the diverse styles of work available for all ages in the sequential art field, attending the BD & Comics Passion event in South Kensington once again proved no exception to the veritable melting pot of art styles. This was the third event of its kind organised by Helene Fiamma and the staff at the beautiful building which is the Institut Francais.

BD & Comics Passion is a four day event, covering a multitude of genres, media and formats, from pop-up comics to figurines, absolutely every aspect of this great hobby is covered. The main draw for me, if you pardon the pun, was the opportunity to meet bd legends REGIS LOISEL and FRANCOIS BOUCQ. There was a cosmopolitan array of creators on hand, to chat and sketch throughout the weekend, including Posy Simmonds, Hunt Emerson, Glen Baxter, Penelope Bagieu, Ian Culbard, Pascal Garray, Mark Stafford and many more.

On Saturday's agenda was the big launch of Loisel's PETER PAN - collected in one lovely-looking volume, in English, for the first time, published by John Anderson's SOARING PENGUIN. This really is a beautiful book, and one that should be on everyone's bookshelf. If you dont have room... throw something out :)  I had seen a couple of the individual albums previously (this book is comprised of all six vols) when they were released in europe, and I remember thinking at the time 'if only this would be translated at some point', well, now I have my wish, not only is it translated, but it's deluxe too. Most folk reading this would be already aware of Loisel's prolific graphic novel output, his work at Disney (Mulan)... but this creator's Peter Pan is no sugar-coated tale. It is rooted firmly in the grim underbelly of old London Town, make no mistake, this tale is right up my cobbled-stoned alley BUY.

Regis is a gentlemen and despite the language barrier, I got the impression he liked my work too, which is always cool to know. We exchanged sketches, and when I saw what he had done for me I had to take mine back and elaborate on it a few more minutes. I was also lucky enough to get some sketches from the genial Francois Boucq--- well, I say sketches, but they were 'drawings' all done using a brush pen, which was handled with consumate skill. I have been a Boucq fan since I first saw his work in Heavy Metal magazine way back in the mid-eighties. This weekend was certainly one to remember. Although the attendance was not the same as that of a 'normal' comic show, the passion for the medium was there in fans and creators alike.

Saturday evening was the inaugaral Drink and Draw event, a bizarre mix of wine tasting, and artists sketching projected onto the big screen. I'm not a wine buff, but nontheless it was an interesting and fun event. My hotel was great, situated just a few doors away from the venue, thanks to my wife for finding that one on the net;)

Sunday, was spearheaded by a Francois Boucq workshop, which sadly, I could not attend as it overlapped the Loisel Peter Pan talk, this was the only downside of the whole event (the bad timing of events, not Loisel's actual talk you understand) hosted by Alex Fitch. The interpreter did a fantastic job of reiterating comments and questions from Loisel and Fitch and it made for an entertaining hour plus. Going behind the scenes of the artists's thinking process during this During the couple of days I managed to have a chat with Mark Stafford who has just illustrated a Victor Hugo story for Self Made Hero. THE MAN WHO LAUGHS is a real tour-de-force, evoking all sorts of emotions whilst reading. David Hine has done a superb job transforming Hugo's original words into an easily- accessible masterpeice for today's readers. Mark's signature style is is very much suited to this book and is enhanced even further by his own textured colours. The Man Who Laughs is not funny at all and yet another must read gn BUY.

I guess you all must have Boucq and Jodowsky's BOUNCER? If not, why not BUY. In fact any book by Boucq BUY.

video
I'm signing off for now, but if I could make any suggestions for next years guestlist it would be BLACKSAD artist Juanjo Guarnido and  FRANCOIS SCHUITEN....any chance, Helene? Thanks for organising such a great weekend, hope to see you all next year.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Hi Folks  I've just recently resurrected a few characters from my first gn SPIRIT OF THE HIGHWAYMAN, this is for a short story for David Lloyd's ACES WEEKLY, slated to go in Vol 4, which is currently available to subscribers. This is a strange one, in as much as I have absolutely no idea how it ends yet ;) anyway, here's a taster.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013


Hello folks
How are you all? I've been fairly productive just lately, despite upping sticks to a new (ancient) house, with stone walls so thick no modern communication device can penetrate. So apologies for delays in posts, at least now I have an excuse. The Batman pic was produced for a German collector who has a perchant for battle damaged heroes, and the first time ever I get to draw Daredevil, albeit it in London as opposed to Hell's Kitchen. Whilst composing this peice it suddenly occurred to me that it would be a nice nice touch to include the Old Bailey in the background. Pop back for more soon. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Hellboy peice

I have many artists that I really admire, and this recent peice encompasses two legends. Arthur Rackham, the victorian children's book illustrator is a major influence on me, although I dont think it shows in my work so much. Mike Mignola is a current master of composition and creepiness currently back on his Hellboy series. For this illustration I thought it would be visually interesting to include Rackham's signature 'humanised' trees, with everyone's favourite red devil getting to grips with the root(s) of the problem. Talking of problems I have a huge one with my car, major league bill of £600 :( so really struggling to try and get some cash together, may have to sell this peice if you are interested, just let me know-either of Facebook or this dusty ol' blog. Back again soon...