This is an iPhone snap of a watercolor I did a few weeks ago. I plan to do a version of it in oil in due course. It was necessary to suspend my use of oil for a while as the products I was using led to some pretty trippy – but ultimately not fun – ocular migraines. Since then, I have added some odorless oils to my supply cabinet. I’m at the point where I can resume. I really like working in oil – though if you are familiar with my monochromatic ink work you would be forgiven for assuming otherwise. I’ll post my progress here.
At the moment, I am taking a break from social media, specifically Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, so this blog is your best bet if you are interested in my new work. My reasons for stepping back are largely related to a desire to enhance my productivity, but they are also related to the attitudes the designers of these platforms have for privacy, data harvesting, and surveillance. Time will tell how these issues are resolved but for now I plan to be more circumspect in the use of the platforms (though in full disclosure these blog posts are shared to Twitter).
If these issues are of interest to you also, I recommend:
The Age off Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff
World Without Mind by Franklin Foer
Zucked by Roger McNamee
Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport
These books have all been published recently and give excellent overviews of the issues from slightly different perspectives.
My first blog post of 2019 is to show you one of the last drawings I did in 2018! Dreamsick is meant to convey that sense of disorientation that can sometimes follow you out of your dreams. Sometimes the feeling is a little sickening, but often it is a welcome change of perspective or perception.
This drawing is available for sale. Message me here, or through social media for details if you are interested. The piece is $500.00 CAN + $20.00 for shipping (Canada Post). Payment through Paypal. Image size is 5″ x 6″ with about .5″ of white border around the edge. It is drawn in silver on a white ground over acid free illustration board.
I’ve been balancing my production between personal work for upcoming group shows, illustration and fiction writing. Balance is hard to achieve, especially when you get seduced by one particular project. This week is was short stories. I finished two that were, sort of, almost there. I might drop one here, to celebrate the first anniversary of my novel, Necessary Monsters. Like my art, my fiction isn’t intended for everyone. It’s my statement, my aesthetic. I love it when readers respond. It’s so gratifying when people “get it.”
Now that the two stories are finished, this weekend I am returning to the final illustrations for my collection of short stories (Magpie’s Ladder, PS Publishing, later this year). Work on my next novel is progressing, but it’s the kind of thing that has to slow cook.
Booking group shows into 2019. Very excited by projects coming down the line. Thanks for your interest and support.
Symphonist No.5 is a silverpoint miniature (4″x3″). It’s one of an ongoing series. Silverpoint lends itself beautifully to miniature work due to the precision you can get with the silver stylus. Over time, this drawing will darken as the particles of silver trapped by the ground begin to tarnish.
I am very excited to show you the cover of my new novel Necessary Monsters, which will be published this May and is now available for pre-order. I can’t wait to share this novel with readers. I re-wrote the book many times over the last few years, refining it to the book I saw in my head. It is, to paraphrase the publisher, true to my art. This observation pleased me immensely because I wrote it to explore the worlds I love through my characters stories. This is a novel filled with books, crumbling cities and unsettling landscapes, magic and of course, monsters. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it.
Other stuff: I spent the last few days moving my website from one platform to another, taking the opportunity to simplify, and cull some older images. The flexibility of the new platform will make it a lot easier to keep the site updated. What can you expect to see? The work highlighted under the Portfolio tab is personal work and ranges from 2009 to present. The Illustration tab highlights various publications, which I either illustrated or contributed to. Over time, I will turn some of those images into gallery links, displaying images from the various projects. But that is phase 2 and will unfold time permitting. Another page, which will be more dynamic and added sooner, will be called Available Originals. My plan with the Available Originals page is to showcase original works appropriate to all budgets. Works on this page will typically be unframed. As an aside, I am very careful with the shipping of original work – at minimum, works are placed in an archival mylar sleeve and shipped sandwiched in 3 pieces of stiff foamcore, within a plastic bubble envelope. For those interested in purchasing a print, they are available in my webstore.