Saturday, 19 December 2009

Merry Chrimbo!

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Gothtwinz shall return with a vengeance next year!

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

More moldy oldies....

These were done to try and get a monthly if not weekly cartoon strip up and running. Needless to say, it failed and now looking past with hazey eyes and can see why! Years ago, myself and Niel Bushnell used to do a couple of daily strips, Flasher Mac for the Daily Sport and The Funny Farm for the Hartlepool Mail and Yorkshire Post. Again, like my previous post, things seemed so much more easier then. Of course, The Farm is still close to our hearts and we're still trying to get it animated but breaking into T.V. is a really long and difficult path!

Sunday, 15 November 2009

A Blast from the Past....

Work is so slow at the moment (as in there isn't any) that I've had an opportunity to go through some of my old files of work. I came across these....all hand painted from eons ago. They were for a now sadly defunct magazine called 'Stories for Children'. This magazine was brilliant, it normally had about 5 to 6 original kids stories illustrated by some of our best artists (including Norman Beardsly...who used to do most of the illustrations on the 'Rainbow' kids show)

I miss those days when everything seemed a hell of a lot easier than they are today!

Monday, 2 November 2009


Spooky greetings to you all mortals! Tis a tad late I know for Halloween but I hope you all had a good one! I've got to say that it was a really quiet one round our patch, I think the state of the country has even effected this our holyiest of holy days!.....If it wasn't for those pesky kids!

Friday, 2 October 2009

He's behind you.....AGAIN!

Well dear reader, another year, another panto poster. I don't know where the time goes!

I love working for this client as they're always so easy to get on with and generally give me free rein to do whatever I want to (within limits anyway...I always tend to go for a more moody, dark image and have to be gently reminded these posters are for a family market so brighten the buggers up!) best part is, unlike another company I know, they pay up within a week! They also give me plenty of time but I somehow always run out of it...mind you this year I had a good excuse...the accursed company who owe me are slowly destroying my will to live at the moment.

Anyway, at the end of the day, I must admit that I like this illo...and I got away with doing it with a nightime background as well! VICTORY IS MINE!

Tuesday, 22 September 2009

A fish called Gothtwinz

Well the summer hols are done and dusted and as you can tell from my lack of posts last month, twas a hectic time! Two Gothette kids off school for six weeks and one Gothtwin trying to work from home is not an easy thing. Work is slow, the card industry (like the rest of the country) seems to be falling to bits. I'm working on a commission as we speak but after that I'm dry although I've got a new client lined up for some book work which sounds pretty exciting!

Here's some fish I've been messing around with in Illustrator just to keep my finger in so to speak.

Sunday, 26 July 2009


How do all! Heres another old sketch I've just painted up. Haven't got a clue who he's meant to be....I was going to do him in white armour but as always seems to be the case with any robotty things I do...he's ended up in red!

Many,many moons ago I did a couple of comic strips featuring an army of red suited soldiers flying around the universe in their red spaceships. I think it all stems from one of my childhood heroes, Baron Von Richthofen AKA The Red Baron. I adored his Fokker Triplane and loved the fact that he (and his fellow pilots) were so confident that they flew around in brightly coloured bi-planes (unlike thier Allied counterparts who flew in dull coloured planes)

Wednesday, 22 July 2009

I dream of genie...

Here's the concepts for the hero and genie for my poster job. There was a green version of the genie done as well as my clients didn't know which version they were going to use. My problem was that in my eyes, the red genie reminds me of Hellboy (one of my gods) yet the green version reminded me of the Hulk (one of the dullest comic characters ever!)

They've plumbed for the red (which I wanted as it links into the overall colour scheme) so I'm a happy bunny!

Bad news is that my bad guy (see below) and the Emperor have been dropped from the poster...gutted at that as I really liked the bad guy!

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Angels to some...demons to others.....

After working on the poster commission, I thought I'd redo an ancient sketch I found from many moons ago. Spent a few hours on it and here she is!

Saturday, 18 July 2009

New for old...

Here's a little something I've just finished working on. The top image is my old avatar, pencils then coloured up in Photoshop. The next image is the new version which was done completely in Illustrator. I've removed the spoon (as the original image was for a cereal box design) and messed around a bit with the geezers proportions. I'll master Illustrator if it kills me.....and it is slowly!!

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Is there a Doctor in the house?...

Heres the work I did a few months ago for the good old BBC. It's for the 'Doctors' programme which I've worked for before, this is now the third time they've used me so I can officially make this a trilogy!
The blurb for the episode says 'Karen helps a 14-year-old boy to win a battle against his school bully and his online avatar.'.... all I can say is that the characters I designed are for a mock computer game Warwolf. They're meant to be half animal/half robot fighting machines of death. I also had to do a mock title screen for the game (featuring the main hero fella) and a mocked up game screen which if I remember correctly is made up from various pieces of Cornwall and parts of the chemical works in my home town of Middlesbrough, they make great futuristic buildings.
The two front view faces are, I believe, going to be superimposed onto the actors faces in the show....sounds like it's going to be good!
It's on BBC1 on Friday the 17th of July at 13.45 so make sure you watch it soap fans!!....oh, and the episode is called 'The Art of War' which is pretty damn cool!
All artwork is copyright BBC PRODUCTIONS. 2009

Monday, 13 July 2009

Good guys and bad guys...

More concepts from the job I'm working on! (Thanks for all the comments! I'm really enjoying this new style....although I know I'll have to tighten it up for the finished poster!)

Sunday, 12 July 2009

A lad insane...

Here's a quick concept I've just finished for a poster commission I'm working on. Don't know if shes going to end up like this or even appear in the poster yet but I'm pleased with the overall look. I'll post more from the same job when I get round to doing them!

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Victory for the Gothtwinz!

Hallo peeps,

Like Gretel (see below) another one of my fave designers is a certain young man named Toby Attrill. Although still at school, Toby over the last three years or so, has built up his own handmade jewellery business. His pieces are literally sold all over the world now, he has work in shows and shops around the country, has been name dropped on the radio (though the less said about his age the better!) and has even appeared on national TV with his wares....(talking to the fabled living Ronseal advert David Dickinson)

Toby has a real eye for creative design and an unbelievable sense of business (wish I could say that) You should all check out his work at

The best bit of news is that recently I won a competition on his Blog and my two Gothettes (Goth Major and Goth Minor) are now the proud owners of one of a kind pieces. A beautiful dragon fly charm and a stunning silver cross (IT BURNS MY EYES!!!) both adorned with black jems.

So Toby, a hearty thank you from myself and the Gothettes, they will treasure these for all time!

Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Ants in my Pants....

Here's another business card/flyer logo I'm working on at the moment. The client wanted six legs for the ant but I did a four legs version as well which I prefer. Some people I showed it to commented on why would an ant have four legs instead of six but seemed to ignore the more pressing matter of why the hell would an ant be holding woodworking tools and standing erect!

All the text is just put in to show the client the font, as you can know doubt tell, what woodworking folk do is beyond me so I opted for the classic...BLAHBLAHBLAH line!
I can't seem to concentrate on work at the moment as a client, who owes me a small fortune, are messing me around. They are now 3-4 months overdue with my fees but seem to think that illustrators can live off thin air...unlike their own inhouse staff who seem to be getting paid!

Friday, 19 June 2009

Travelling to the Middle of Nowhere.

Throughout all my time working as a freelance illustrator, I've got to know a lot of very friendly and talented artists and designers. Some, I've known for years now and even though I've never physically met them in the 'real' world, I feel like I known them for all my life and they're part of the family!
One of the very first fellow freelancers I 'hooked' up with was a lovely lady known to me only as 'Dog' (her old AOI web name) the wonderful and amazingly talented Gretel Parker. In the years I've known her she has dropped the Dog tag and I've followed her work in awe, she's one of my all time favourite artists, and now, through her hard work she's finally getting the recognition she so richly deserves. Her blog page, The Middle of Nowhere, has a massive following and has won awards. I can't recommend her site (and work of course ) enough. She almost daily updates her site with whats she's working on, wether it's personal work or a commission, but she also tells us about her life as well. She lives in a beautiful part of the world in a small cottage, which almost seems like it's caught in some sort of time warp from the past crossed with Emily's toyshop from Bagpuss.
Gretels artwork is hard to describe (so go check it out) beautiful images of creatures and animals living in strange dreamlike worlds. She has a fetish for animals, sometimes looking like toys and at other times looking like they've escaped from a distant land. She also makes felt toys which are amazing, where she gets the time and inspiration from is beyond me.
Another feature of her site is that Gretel has a studio web-cam set up, so every now and again, you can watch a master at work. I was on there myself a couple of nights ago, and wasn't sure if I was watching her in real time or not so decided to email her to ask.....Gretel then wrote out a 'Hello Goth' sign and showed it to the camera, which I've got to admit was cool! I've put up a couple of pictures of her at work and if you look closely you can see the sign just in front of her!
I've also put up a small selection of Gretels work which I flippin'adore but advise you all to check out her site to see even more of it!.....and if you're anything like me, once you enter the Middle of'll be blissfully trapped there forever!

Monday, 8 June 2009

Where in the world....PEE CEE WORLD!

Heres a business card I knocked out yesterday for a new computer repair firm (PeeCeez).Had some fun doing this as I had total freedom to do whatever I wanted!

Friday, 5 June 2009

In space, no-one can hear you puke!

Heres a rejected illo I've just done for a card commission. Shame really because I quite like it. Anyways, turns out that the whole things to complex and needs to be simplified down a level or two. This is one of the many problems I have when working to commission, you always try and do the best you can and make each piece as professional as possible but then you get told you've put too much into the thing! Of course what we all want really is to get that perfect job where all you do is stickmen on a white background and get paid the going rate for what turns out to be a one hour job! (I did a job like this a few years back....if only I could get more like that!)

Wednesday, 27 May 2009

My eyes are bleeding!

Well I've finished my massive commission, 7 humourous calendars, so that's 84 illustrations and all the layouts! T'was a huge gig and seemed to go on forever, the last week of the deadline was hellish and I must have averaged about 3 hours kip a night if I was lucky!

So what next, well I've got 5 new card designs to work on a my annual pantomime poster (which is always fun as I can normally do whatever the hell I want to do and it's always good practice!)

I've uploaded part of one the card designs, it's for a mums day card, the line work was done in Illustrator then coloured and put together in Photoshop. The finished card is having a foil layer added to it, which any card designer will tell you is a nightmare to do, the only worse thing than foil on a card is glitter (what we call in the trade, DEVILS ARSE DUST!)

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

...and now for a brief interlude.

As I keep on mentioning, I'm totally snowed under with work at the moment. My main job just seems to be getting harder and harder to do as slowly my mind is melting....(only another 33 to go....groan!). One of Mrs Gothtwinz work mates has recently left to prepare for the birthing of her first sprog, so as a novel fare thee well gift, I was asked to do a quick card for her. Took a few hours to whip out imbetween the regular work and was a nice break form the general monotony!

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

I'm still spirit at least!

Hello one and all, just a quickie update as I've got loads on at the moment. I've been working on 3 different commissions all at the same time, including a huge 78 illo job which is burning me out rapidly.

I've just completed another job for the good old BBC 'Doctors' programme, I'll show all that work later to the transmission date. As usual, it was a fun job to do, their team always give me brilliant directions but totally trust me to interperate the illustrations in my own style. This commission was slightly different from the last two as all I can say for now is that it wasn't a mock comic cover. Personally, I can't wait to see what they do with the finished show, it should be interesting!

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Make my day PUNK!

Here's some of my latest designs. They're all taken from my latest commission which is to produce eighty four gags and illustrations for a range of calendars. This is going to take a while!

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Crouching Tiger.....

Here's what I'm working on at the moment. This is part of an illustration to go into a range of calendars for next years market. It's been a while since I was able to draw something that wasn't a human character or a cutesy type creature so I actually enjoyed doing it. To prove this point I fell into an old commercial illustrators trap, I spent way too long on it! Time is of the essence when you have deadlines and unless you're a genius and have work coming out of your eye-sockets then you should always be preparing for the next commission or promotional sendout whilst working on your current job. I always do the best I can but sometimes I'd love to have more time to work on a piece but this rarely happens. If you enjoy adding and improving all the time then you're really losing valuable time from the next bit of work lined up so I really should have controlled myself more and cut back.
Still, saying that, it was good for my soul so I have no real regrets....and now as the old saying goes, it's back to the drawing board as I have an army of human characters and cutesy type creatures to design......sigh!