Monday, January 26, 2004

Okay, so the goggles are a big success, that's the most important thing. It was a bit weird realising, somewhat belatedly, that this was the first time I'd actually been able to see properly while swimming. I've worn glasses (or contacts) since I was about six years old so it had always been a blurry kind of pursuit before but now, suddenly, I'm like the bastard offspring of Jacques Cousteau and Fotherington-Thomas, marvelling at the wonderful new world beneath the surface of the public baths (and appalled to discover just how grubby the bottom is - do the staff throw in a selection of used plasters at the beginning of each day to keep in line with some European quota?) I'd drone on wetly about the beauty of it all (not the used plasters so much but the rest of it: light on water; light through water; bodies in water; the whole slow motion, distorted soundtrack arthouse movieness of it) but it's nothing new to you, probably, so I won't bother. But if anyone reads this who swims myopically - get prescription goggles, they're fabulous.

Otherwise last week was principally taken up with finishing one lot of spot illustrations and accepting a commission for another batch. The good folk at Horrible Histories seem to be limiting my use to odds and ends at present rather than giving me any of the more substantial jobs like the comic strips (which I've previously done a bunch of) or spreads (which I've only done rarely and not especially well). This is mainly okay in that the spot illos are less stressful and, for the time they take, usually more profitable than the bigger jobs but at the same time it does feel a little as if I've fallen out of favour with them for the other stuff. Still, I shouldn't need validation from my clients, I should just get on and create something of my own that I can be proud of.

In other news: our DVD player finally arrived from Amazon (shortly after writing the last entry I think) so we've been enjoying the delights of Alan Plater's Beiderbecke series amongst other things in patented Lovelyvision. A joy. Also, we're working our way through the first series of Andy Hamilton's excellent Bedtime which had passed us by when it was shown on the telly. Luckily some very direct hinting to younger brother Mike pre-Christmas led to my receiving it as a splendid yuletide gift (thanks, Mike). Nice to be reminded that British telly can still show some class from time to time.

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