First is, please support the Strumpet. I'm in it. A long, lightly fictionalised, autobiographical comic - the longest thing I've drawn for some time. Here's a taster. If you'd like to see more, go fund it!
When did you know you wanted to be an illustrator?
For years I resisted becoming an illustrator: at school art was considered a second-tier lesson for students who couldn’t cope with ‘academic’ subjects. I did an English degree and doodled during lectures but I don’t regret it because reading and writing are at the heart of what I do.
What piece of art most inspires you?
Right now nineteenth-century cartoonist Honoré Daumier’s Les Bas Bleus series about the pretentions of female intellectuals: satirical but also deeply sympathetic. His lithographs have such wonderful tiny touches like the smoke of a woman’s cigarette clearly made by wiping a drip of acid across the plate he was working on – such personal, hands-on ‘moments’ draw the viewer closer to the moment the picture was made.
...buy a limited edition print of the work from my book. I had a few enquiries about buying original artwork and, although I'd love to be able to sell it, I actually drew a lot of it directly onto a dummy of the book. I may sell it one day but that could well be when I'm a) very old b) very poor or c) dead, so I hope you'll have to wait a little while. (In the meantime here's a tantalising glimpse)
However I have made very limited edition giclée prints of each piece of artwork. There will only be five prints produced from each spread and they are printed on sketchbook pages (a bit fiddly which is why the run is so limited).
Here they are exhibited them at Foyles bookshop last month in lovely frames that suspend the artwork inside a sort of glass sandwich, letting you see your wallpaper or tasteful Farrow & Ball paint between the edge of the print and the frame.
Each print is, of course, signed, dated and numbered.
I'm selling the framed artwork through the Tate Britain and Tate Modern shops, where you will soon be able to see the pictures on the wall. If the prints are not showing on their online shop, just email them and they will be able to sell you one. I think they will retail at around £90 which I hope doesn't sound too outrageous.
If you'd like an unframed print please get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Unframed prints cost £60 each + p&p (about £4 in the UK and £6 for the rest of the world). If you buy more than one print I will post them free, by insured post, worldwide. If you want to buy more than two prints I'll give you a further discount on the price but I haven't quite worked that one out yet.
If you would like a print, just have a flick through the book, decide which one you'd like, and get in touch.
Oh and if you'd like a signed book with a little drawing inside it, I've just received my copies from the Tate so, if you emailed me about ordering one and I haven't got in touch yet - apologies - please email me again.
Here's Elliot (it's a joke, he's looking round a 90 decree angle)
...hanging on to Piper the whippet...
...but sadly I didn't quite get to draw Leyla who spent such a long time sitting in front of the glass on the other side of the bookshop windows, drawing me drawing (probably the best portrait of me that's ever been done - wow, she must have spent ages doing the shoes!)...
(all photos that are not mine courtesy of Tate Publishing, drawing courtesy of Leyla)
Last week, wanting to create a mural for the Tate Modern that featured real people (so much more interesting to draw) - either Londoners or (virtual) tourists, I posted asking people to send me their photos so they could feature. Some of them I'd met before, like...
...Sakura of Chasing Bawa,for whom I had to design some boots (hope she likes them!) as she sent me a photo that didn't show her feet.
Others I haven't met but had talked to online like...
...and this is Graham (below, right) who sent me a photo of him running the London Marathon which seemed particularly appropriate. Sadly I couldn't include the 6' inflatable banana (the photo with the fruit in it was too small).
Kelley sent a photo of her wearing a hat the size of a teacup while carrying an eagle. I wasn't quite sure how I could fit that one in but when she turned up it was easier...
...I replaced the eagle with a London pigeon.
Thanks so much for sending your photos, everyone! I'm only sorry I couldn't include them all.