this northern boy

Illustrations for an imaginary age

Tag: sketch

I drawed a dinosaur

I don’t often draw creatures. In fact I very rarely draw anything organic at all. Sometimes though, when I start scribbling it becomes a creature, or a person, or in this case – a dinosaur. I’m pretty sure it’s a dinosaur rather than a dragon, but don’t quote me on that.

Drawn with a Palomino Blackwing 602 and a Staedtler Mars Lumograph Black 6B.

Dinosaur

Dinosaur sketch

August blogfest – day 25

Playlist: Summer in the city – The Lovin’ Spoonful, 99.9 Fahrenheit Degrees – Suzanne Vega, In the heat of the night – Ray Charles, Summertime – Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong.

It’s been hot today. Almost too hot to draw. My arm pretty much sticking to my desk, risking smudging ink or pencil or paint. Nice.

With the help of a wide open window in my office, and a fan on full blast, I did manage to get some work done though. Making progress on the illustration for Graphite magazine. I’m really happy with the way the picture’s coming along, it’s strange though – as I’m producing this for an article about my process – how cataloguing each stage of the project makes me think about doing things differently. My workflow is almost entirely analog, so it always seems a bit cumbersome and convoluted, I can’t help feeling there are lots of improvements to be made. Step one might be getting hold of a light box.

IMG_7322

A mess of cables

Sketch-book-ideas-13

Pencils

A New Dimension in Space…

This is a drawing I did in my Moleskine sketchbook a while ago, it’s the hero’s spaceship from a short story I’m writing that will be part of my Asteroid Belt Blues (ABB) universe. The spaceship is inspired by the modular design of the International Space Station, and by the look of modern submersibles. I love the idea of a big old fish tank style cockpit where the pilot can sit and look out at the stars. In my ABB future, materials science has progressed to a point where these structures can be made from a diamond/glass composite. Strong enough to withstand micrometeorite impacts and the pressures of interplanetary travel.

IMG_2983

I posted this picture on Instagram, where it was seen by Al William, and he kindly modelled the ship in Fusion 360 and Keyshot. I think it looks great, I love the decisions that Al had to make to complete the ship – based solely on the image above. Funnily Al thought it was a submersible – so that influence is obviously pretty strong.

Screen Shot 2016-02-18 at 12.40.21

Al also sent me a 360 fly-around – it’s the first time I’ve seen one of my spaceship drawings come to life like this. I love it.

 

To Boldly Go…

I like drawing spaceships, you know that by now right? I’ve been working on a few new pages of spaceship concepts recently, in pen and marker, and I thought I’d share them – and a few other older ones – with you.

 

Sketching from the imagination: Sci-fi

I’m lucky enough to be featured in 3DTotal’s new book – Sketching from the imagination: Sci-fi. It’s 320 pages of sketches, drawings and concept art from 49 amazing artists and illustrators (and me).

I’m sharing its pages with one of my absolute favourite artists – Ian McQue – which makes me feel a little bit dizzy.

If you order it before June 8th they’ll throw in a free sketchbook.

DSC_9990

DSC_0224

DSC_0225

DSC_0226

A lone spaceship…

It’s been a while since I drew a spaceship, so it was fun to create this little one-man flyer. I think it’ll get some colour in the next few days – probably orange.

One-man flyer.

One-man flyer.

The Stones…

Inspired by Linda Thompson‘s song “Nine Stone Rig”…

I’ve been drawing standing stones. Part neolithic, part Lord of the Rings.

Drawing of standing stones

Nine Stone Rig

Drawing of a rock formation

The Stones

Tentacles

One of the recurring themes of my droids has to be tentacles. I don’t know why but I do love drawing a nice set of tentacles (no sniggering at the back). I quite like drawing octopus and squid too, so it’s not just droids.

There’s definitely a weird hybrid of jellyfish and octopus going on in most of these, with hints of The Matrix and The Empire Strikes Back.

 

Mountains, moors and make-believe

There is something magical about creating a place or a world that previously only existed inside your own head. It’s impossible to draw (at least it is for me) an imaginary landscape without wondering about the people who inhabit it, or the history of it, or the flora and fauna that fill it.

Some of my landscapes are very much rooted in the real world, the lake district is never far from the tip of my pen, while some have only the loosest foundations here on earth.

Only one of my landscapes exists as is, Slater’s Bridge in Little Langdale in the Lake District. I really must get back there with a sketchbook. It’s an amazingly beautiful place.

Slater's Bridge

Slater’s Bridge

People are very rare in my drawings, partly because I’m pretty terrible at drawing them, but partly because I want to be the person in the picture. I don’t want to share these places with anyone else. Extreme escapism for me would be stepping into one of my illustrations and exploring what’s beyond the edge of the page.

The Tin Woodman…

Or the Tin Man according to the film. In the books, the Tin Woodman was originally a human called Nick Chopper. He was turned to tin by the Wicked Witch of the East to stop him from marrying his true love.

This is my take on the character from the 1939 film, I wanted to keep the face the same as Jack Haley’s, but give the rest a bit of a twist.

The Tin Woodman

The Tin Woodman