Wednesday, April 28, 2004


Going quiet again due to needing to get the Listen comic strip done by a week on Friday which is now also the deadline for a batch of googly-eyed spot illustrations for the Horrible Histories mag. The strip is progressing rather slowly with lots of false starts and whiffling but there's a chance that it might end up with a few half decent bits of cartooning in it. Maybe.

Anyway, here's an almost entirely unrelated drawing...

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Mr Langridge's Magnificent Folly 

As of today that fine, talented and ludicrously hard-working fellow Mr Roger Langridge begins his new daily web comic, The Hotel Fred. Given the amount of work such an endeavour entails (I once tried to put together a week's worth of daily strips: it took me over a month - they were rubbish) and the fact that Roger also has illustration work and parental duties to fill his time this is a brave and noble undertaking.

Or stupid, who can say.

Whatever - Roger's loss (of free time and physical and mental well-being) will undoubtedly be our gain (in fine cartooning and daft mirth). Go there now. Go there again tomorrow. Repeat every day (except Sundays) thereafter.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Listen update 

Back at the beginning of last week I finally hacked out a very hurried thumbnail version of my four page comic strip for the Listen anthology. I had intended to attempt an ambitious, intellectually challenging and bravely innovative mood piece combining the subtle atmospherics of a Frank King Gasoline Alley Sunday page with the disquieting oddness of a Beckett play. In the event I cranked out a pointless bit of daftness about a man with a The End Of The World Is Nigh sandwich board talking in a tea shop with a chap whose mobile phone recently (accidentally) collided with his head with some force. I think it's kind of okay though.

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Quite probably wrongheaded opinions 

Sorry to have been quiet for a while. I've had a birthday since the last entry so naturally there's been a lot of cleaning up to do after the week-long debauchery that marked the occasion. Top tip to save you from repeating my mistakes: don't cut the cake before the dancing girl bursts out. The good news is that Fifi Eloise is in a stable condition and the doctors assure us that the scarring should hardly be noticeable at all, even, amazingly, in her working clothes.

Interesting Radio 4 programme the other night on the whole "Illegal downloading is killing music" issue. Well, interesting but a little predictable: according to people who earn lots of money in high up jobs in record companies illegal downloading is A Bad Thing; according to people who don't want to spend 13 quid on an album (containing only a couple of tracks that they actually want) it is A Good Thing.

Difficult to feel very sorry for the record company executives although I suppose one can understand their Chicken Licken panic as their entire world begins to crumble around them. Still, fuck 'em if they can't see the bigger picture. Less power to marketing men, more to the artists; more artists gaining a respectable-sized audience, fewer becoming megalomaniacal megastars; more emphasis on public performance as a means of earning, with the cheap or free availability of the recordings online mainly serving as a way of promoting such performance... Almost certainly a naive and idealistic fantasy but let me dream for a while before the big boys find a way of regaining control. I really hope they don't though.

Actually, the attitudes of the big companies reminds me of that of fishermen as described by my marine biologist chum, Matt. Basically, faced with overwhelming evidence and logical argument that their industry cannot possibly continue as it has done in the past they put their hands over their ears and go "la la la" until you stop saying such horrid things.

Incidentally, George Michael has apparently claimed that he will henceforth be eschewing record companies' involvement in his work and releasing future work online for free (but suggesting that fans donate to favoured charities). He expects that in this way he may well end up releasing twice as much music as hitherto. This is the first persuasive argument against downloading that I've heard.

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