Archive for the ‘Work in progress’ Category

First post in forever!

Friday, November 22nd, 2013

So yep, it is.

A lot’s happened in the world of Jimbobbin over the past year or two. I had the pleasure of working with the lovely folks at Mind Candy in Shoreditch and Brighton for 18 months which was a fantastic experience and a very valuable one. I made some genuine friends there, many of which I keep in touch with since leaving in August to kick start Jimbobbin as a going concern.

Shortly after that I discovered I had trapped a nerve in my elbow which affected my drawing hand and was a major blow to any freelance work plans that I had. And so here we are now, a little rusty but getting better and feeling able to create stuff again. To celebrate I’ve resurrected an old piece, another folky character in the shape of Jack Frost. It is getting bloody cold after all…


Jack Frost


New gallery

Monday, May 23rd, 2011

I’ve added a gallery section to my website with  selected works for easy ogling…

Guerrilla printing: Operation Peg

Monday, October 11th, 2010

Meet Sailor Peg. He’s the first in a series of four hand screen-printed postcards from my forthcoming set Heroes of Albion!

Since screen-printing in the studio can be pricey, I was keen to try some of the DIY home printing methods available. At first I considered Gocco printing, but discovered that the supplies (bulbs, screens etc) are no longer available to buy. That’s when I discovered StencilPro.

The StencilPro system allows home users to create their own screen-prints using a light-sensitive mesh that can be exposed with nothing but sunlight. The downsides are that the stencils can only be used for one design (there’s no removing the ‘burned in’ image like with proper screen-printing), and that they can be quite expensive this side of the pond.

For those that are interested, here’s an outline of what I did:

First, I print my colour separations onto the transparency – these are my positives. I bought the StencilPro starter kit and it comes with some acetate-type stuff, but you can use tracing paper, OHP transparencies etc. I’m going to be printing two colours on recycled kraft postcards that I’ve cut myself.

Next, I place the positives upside down onto the pink screen material and fasten them into the ‘exposure unit’ provided. This basically consists of a felt-covered base board and a piece of perspex secured with magnets to keep your positives flat on the screen.

The exposure timings in the guide book are for a “sunny afternoon in San Fransisco”. Ok, we’ve had a good weekend in Brighton but I’m giving them a little longer  – about a minute in direct sunlight near the window.

I do this separately with two screens (for the two colours), exposing each one individually.

Once exposed, I take the screen to the sink and let it soak for ten minutes. After that the stencil hasn’t fully washed out so I gave it a thorough going over under the tap, particularly in areas of fine detail. I was surprised at how much fidelity in the stencil you can achieve using this kit, it came through pretty well.

I let the stencil dry, and now’s where it really starts to get DIY!

To keep my postcards in position during printing I’ve constructed a simple frame by cutting a postcard-shaped hole in a bit of 300GSM card. I then tape my screen onto it across the top, creating a sort of hinge. I made sure the image area on my screen was a little bigger than the postcard to ensure it runs full-bleed to the edges.

Next, I take the frame and stick it to a big piece of scrap paper taped to the living room floor! This is basically my own printing studio right in my flat, and it is very awesome.

Let’s go.

On with the first colour.

Ok, so I’ve already run off a few prints here, hence the mess. One thing I will say about this process is that it gets very, very messy very quickly. Printing on your floor means you get into all sorts of weird positions and predicaments, and you need a lovely girlfriend / boyfriend / dogsbody to continue taking pictures for you.

In case you’re wondering, I’m using Daler System 3 acrylics and medium at about a 60 / 40 mix. I’m aligning the postcards top-left in the frame.

Forty prints later and I’m pretty happy.

There’s something really satisfying about seeing a load of prints all racked up together like this, especially when they’ve been cobbled together in your own flat!

I won’t bore you with the details of printing the black – it’s basically a second run through of this process with a different colour and another screen.

One thing that is worth noting is that I had to make another card frame for the second colour; the first one had warped beyond usable with the moisture of the first. Given my time again I’d make it out of thicker card and put thicker card down on the floor.

But here we have it. Thirty-five decent screen-prints out of forty using DIY gear and only one out of registration! Bring on the next postcard…

After the printing is done, you can wash out the stencil and keep it for another print run.

If any of you want more detail on how this was done, feel free to drop me an email or leave a comment.

Have fun!

Sketchbook stuff

Thursday, September 30th, 2010

Here are some scans from my sketchbooks.

These pages are pretty typical of what I fill my books with, trying out different pens, sticking stuff  in etc. For me, sketchbooks are a dumping ground for quick, rough ideas and I try never to get too precious about what goes into them.

More often than not I’ll just quickly doodle a lot of ideas down and end up doing nothing with 90% of what I draw. Amidst the chaos though, there’ll occasionally be one or two characters that I like the look of; the shape of a head here, a nose there, and oh those feet look cool…

Whilst it’s a different approach from other artists who fill their books with beautifully finished pieces, it works for me – partly because I’ve had the idea of rapid iteration and quick idea generation drummed into me through various jobs. I also find it quite liberating to just scribble down stream of consciousness stuff!

If you get the seed of an idea down you can always work it up later.

More 3D…

Friday, July 16th, 2010

Did a bit more work on the cowboy.

I decided the gun was looking a bit weedy so beefed it up and got onto the unwrapping and texturing. I’ve also overlaid an old paper texture on the render to help get a feel for the vintage / handmade look I’m aiming for. The paper is actually from an old piece of sheet music that I picked up at a car boot sale – I love how you can work found / tangible stuff into digital creations!

Much more can be made of this yet, the clothing probably needs a bit of work and I’m looking forward to rigging and posing him, then making the 2D backdrops.

Cowboy textured

Yee-haw 3D! In progress

Sunday, July 4th, 2010

I started this a while ago and thought it might be nice to post up some work in progress for once.

Occasionally I like to get my 3D brain fired up, and this character is an evolution of the 2D cowboy I posted up a while back. I’d really like to style him in the same way I do my drawn characters – similar palettes, textures and a hand drawn 2D backdrop.

I love the Pams food animation from Jonny kofoed and no doubt similar techniques will inspire me here. I’ll keep you posted..

Cowboy model