Tailor of Echoes

Books, Fiction, Illustration, Necessary Monsters, Works for Sale, writing

I am very excited to announce that my new illustrated novel Tailor of Echoes will be published by PS Publications in December 2021! It is now available for pre-order from the publisher! There are 2 editions: a jacketed hardcover and a signed and numbered limited edition of 100.

The ancient City of Steps is transforming. Alleys and staircases appear where none previously existed. A tree is discovered at the bottom of a canal. In his search for the cause, a young, visionary architect, Adrian Peak, falls afoul of a secret society known as the Curators. The Curators task Adrian with finding a lost document called the Oneiric Chart in their vast sealed library. The chart is the key that opens a door to a shadow city in another, eerily familiar world. Lannikin Flower, the Curator’s shadowy servant, has deeply personal interest in Adrian’s failure.

I started writing Tailor of Echoes in 2018, shortly after the publication of my novel Necessary Monsters. The main character, Adrian Peak (and yes, that is a nod to Melvyn Peake), came to me right away. He is a young, adventurous architect who spends his time exploring the remotest areas of a very ancient coastal city. He envisions wild architectural interventions, but at the same time he is in love with the old soul of his city. During his urban spelunking, he notices that things are changing in very weird and inexplicable ways and set out to discover why.

This book draws together all of my obsessions: architecture, old cities, vast libraries, art, and of course monsters! PS Publications gave me the opportunity to illustrate this book, so in addition to the cover and endpapers, there are 10 interior ink drawings. One of these can be seen below.

I hope you will enjoy reading this book as much as I enjoyed creating it!

Richard

Cover of Tailor of Echoes
Tailor of Echoes, interior illustration © Richard A. Kirk 2021

Halloween Sale

Books, Fiction, Works for Sale, writing
Ink has the Colours of the Rainbow, 2021, ink on paper, 6.5 x 8.5 inches

The title of this piece was taken from the Notebooks of Joseph Joubert. The piece itself is one of the many I have on sale in my webstore for 25% off until midnight on Halloween (use the code “nox” on check out).

Just a reminder that if you’d like to find out about sales and other things related to my work, you can sign up for my newsletter through my website.

This week saw a special milestone for me as I signed with a new literary agent. I’ll talk more about this in future posts but for now suffice to say that I am very excited by this new relationship. I’ve been without an agent for a couple of years so signing now feels like a great step forward. The timing is great as I spent the intervening time working on a new novel and making notes about the ones to follow.

Speaking of books, in my last post I mentioned I was reading Richard Power’s new book Bewilderment. I’m a little better than half way through and it’s already one of my favorite books of 2021. I’ve been reading Powers since The Gold Bug Variations blew my mind when it came out in the 90’s. I spent most of a transatlantic flight buried in the trade version and whenever I pull it off my bookshelf I am still transported back to that time. I think Bewilderment is Power’s most accessible book yet. It is full of incredible sentences. It profoundly describes the relationship between a father and his son. I love the way the mother is so powerfully present in her absence. I also picked up The Dawn of Everything by David Graeber and David Wengrow. Only a few pages into this massive tome, but wow. I was grabbed from the first lines: “Most of human history is irreparably lost to us. Our species, Homo Sapiens, has existed for at least 200,000 years, but for most of that time we have next to no idea what was happening.”

Richard.

The Bibliophile

Books, Illustration, ink, Magpie's Ladder, Works for Sale, writing

This drawing was originally going to be an interior illustration for my short story collection Magpie’s Ladder. I always liked the drawing, even if it didn’t quite capture the character it was intended to portray. I’ve renamed it The Bibliophile and put it up for sale on my Big Cartel shop along with a few other things.

This year has been all about books. Since my last blog update—August!—I finished the illustrations for Tailor of Echoes and I am waiting to hear from the publisher on the date of publication. I’m also making good progress on illustrations for another book that will be announced soon. I finished a first draft on my new novel and now I’m working through it to prepare it for beta readers and my new agent. So lots going on and lots to look forward to.

I’m reading Bewilderment by Richard Powers. Powers is one of my favorite contemporary authors. Last year I read his Orfeo. I’m also reading The Peripheral by William Gibson and The Mirror Thief by Martin Seay. This is the way I read, drifting from one book to another. Greedy reader. Oh yes, I’m also reading Elizabeth Kolbert’s new one, Under a White Sky.

All for now. I’m going to try and get this blog back on a weekly schedule as I hope to have some cool updates and announcements in the coming weeks.

Richard.

Falling Star

Drawings, ink, Stippling, Works for Sale

This week I am sharing a new drawing called “Falling Star.” It was one of those images that came from nowhere while I was busy with other things.

Falling Star, 2021, ink on Fabriano White Drawing Paper, 8 x 8 inches.

Falling Star is an ancient Queen who strikes against the powerful navies of an oceanic world from within a hidden gyre.

She is available in my shop.

Compulsion and Psychonaut

Books, Drawings, Illustration, ink, webstore, Works for Sale

I just finished these two decorative ink drawings. They were done with carbon black acrylic ink on heavy artboard. They are available for sale (and on sale!) on my webstore.

Just a reminder that I have a selection of larger works done over the past year available for viewing, and sale on my website. Check them out here.

On another note, Suntup Editions announced a new edition of Clive Barker’s novel Imajica today. It looks beautiful. Constant readers will remember that I did some illustrations for the Harper Perennial edition of the book to accompany the appendix by my friend Hans Rueffert. I’m pleased that the material we created gets a walk-on in this edition as well.

Thanks, Richard.

Woman's face surrounded by organic fantasy elements.
Compulsion, 2021, ink on artboard, 10 x 16″
Young woman's face framed with organic and mechanical fantasy elements.
Psychonaut, 2021, ink on artboard, 10″ x 16″

Lander 1

Cross Hatching, Details, Drawings, ink, Natural History, Stippling, Works for Sale
Lander 1, 2021, ink on 140lb Arches hotpress, 18 x 24 inches
Lander 1 detail

Lander 1 detail

The inspiration for Lander 1—and yes, expect a Lander 2 and 3—came from watching the Perseverance rover descend on Mars in February. I started thinking about humans being sole explorers/ representatives from earth. This piece imagines a true lander, with organic rather than mechanical senses, a spirit of earth lander, if you will.

I wish there was some way to better embed the music I was listening to when I was working on this piece, Coil’s Time Machines and Soliloquy for Lilith by Nurse with a Wound. These seem like the perfect soundtracks to meditate on the idea of vast unknown spaces.

Richard.

Mascot

Drawings, ink, Natural History, Works for Sale

I’ve had a very busy few days with non-art related things, so it was fun to have these little pieces to work on. They are part of a series I started with my last post. Hope you enjoy them as much as I did doing them. I think I’ll try something slightly larger in this style. Stay tuned.

For anyone who is interested, these pieces are available for sale on my webstore, at a very reasonable price. Thanks for looking!

Richard

Android and Friends

Drawings, ink, Process, Technique, watercolour, webstore, Work in Progress, Works for Sale

Over the weekend, I created a new series of miniatures. They were created on acid free art board with ink and brush and then tinted with watercolour. This grouping is the first six of twelve.

All six of these pieces are available on in my webstore.

iPhone shot showing the process graphite to ink
The first 6 miniatures rendered in ink
Superhero close up, before watercolour

Shop Update

oil painting, Painting, webstore, Works for Sale
Witch of the Wormwood, 2020, oil on panel with handmade stained pine frame.
Solitudes, 2020 oil on panel with handmade stained pine frame

I took some time today to update my webstore on Big Cartel. I added a stippled ink drawing called Scout (not shown) and two small oils completed at the end of 2020. The sharp eyed among you may also notice I changed the theme of this blog. What do you think of the new look?

Richard

Two New Watercolours

Natural History, Painting, watercolour, webstore, Works for Sale
Watercolour of a fantastic fish
Munchfish, 2021, charcoal and watercolour on hotpress watercolour paper, 9 x 6″ approximate
Gap, 2021, watercolour on 300lb coldpress paper, 11 x 7.5″

Two slightly different watercolour techniques on different papers, with the same palette. These pieces are available in my webstore.