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Monday, 20 December 2010

Saturday, 11 December 2010

clouds shaped like spaceships by Das Fluff

Not really illustration or animation related but I play guitar for Das Flüff in between - take a look

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 11th December

Drugs are bad, mmmmmkay? I was originally going for the 'exploding stomach'imagery but decided against it in the end...
(Article by Michael Holden)
Recently I shared a train carriage with two people whose frank exchange of narcotic chit-chat – while not without its tragedies – was at least a break from the norm.

Woman (glad to have bumped into a mate) "I thought you was in prison!"

Man (equally surprised) "I was, I got done with one bag! Donna got off with two! They said 18 months. Then, they said if I plead guilty I'd get seven. But I didn't know nothing about it. I thought I had to do the whole lot. It was a big surprise to me when they let me out."

Woman "So what you gonna do?"

Man "I'm going on the old Naltrexone."

Woman (cautionary) "If you can be bothered every day."

Man (rueful) "I couldn't sleep for a couple of weeks."

Woman "Well you gotta stay positive. What did your mum to say about it?"

Woman "Went ballistic. Thinks I'm gonna end up like my uncle."

Woman "My area's headed for one of them things where there's not that much shit about; when the good stuff comes back people are gonna start dying."

Man "The stuff I got done with came in at 37/38% – I was quite pleased with that. Did you hear about John's foot?"

Woman "Terrible. Nightmare. He was walking about with bits of bone in his pocket!"

Man (more surprised) "Did you hear about Alannah?"

Woman (nodding) "Her stomach exploded."

Man (with contempt) "Booze."

Later on the drinks trolley came wheeling past; the couple waved it by.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Smoking Nurse

A friend ad posted a Facebook update about visiting the smoking nurse to help him giving up fags & this was the image that came to mind...

Sunday, 5 December 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 4th December

In the interests of good taste I avoided illustrating the 'dad's corpse' reference, read on...
(Article by Michael Holden)
Upstairs on a bus, a group of schoolboys were discussing their day when things quickly took a turn for the extreme.

Boy 1 "(talking about a teacher) It's like she's trying to be you friend – she called me 'bred'ren,' which is going too far."

Boy 2 "The other guy is better, I learned bare stuff with him. More in a day with him than I do in week."

Boy 3 "But he's tough, though. He shows you one thing and you get it. And then another thing and you don't. And then he moves on."

Boy 1 "There's a boy in my class – Polish – his name is Olock. He said to me, 'How did you lose that race?' I said, 'Shut up – your name's Olock.

Like bollock.'"

We pulled up by a station and suddenly they got furtive and steered their friend toward the window.

Boy 2 (to boy 1) "You do it, you do it! You're the best."

Boy 1 shouted something inaudible but loud from the window. Moments later, the man who sells the local paper was up the stairs and out for blood, evidently not for the first time. He singled out Boy 1.

Vendor "Why are you always giving it to me, you little mug? You're gonna get stabbed if you don't shut your mouth!"

Having overplayed his hand, the man went back downstairs.

Boy 3 "He's gone mental."

Boy 2 "He is mental. What did you say?

Boy 1 (stunned at the scale of his creation) "I fucked your dad's corpse."

They dissolved into giggles.

Boy 2 "You're gonna get us killed."

Fair point, but still, it was – presumably – inventive. Reprehensible and so on, but I could hardly write it down for laughing all the same.

Saturday, 27 November 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 27th November

Caution this image contains gratuitous zoom lens tumescence & a very feeble pun which I make no apology for...
(Article by Michael Holden)
One of the occasional hazards of writing a column like this is that, sometimes, the people you've written about track you down. Some write in, and others simply lie in wait. For those drinking locally they don't have to wait too long. Happily, the last time this happened the man who crossed the bar wasn't displeased by his depiction. In fact he was anxious that I carried on.

Man "I've got a new one for you."

Me (uneasy, for such assertions, however well-meant, have seldom proved true.) "That's great."

Man "I was in the supermarket."

Me (anxious for detail) "Which one?"

Man "Sainsbury's. Saturday. Late afternoon."

Me "Right."

Man "So I moved into the bakery area, because I'm after a cheesecake."

Me "Uh huh."

Man "Now, ordinarily I would go for the three-for-two thing but I've seen an individual one. I'm about to get it when I get a text, so I take out my phone."

He took out his phone by way of illustration.

Man (amping up the tension) "But! Just as I've done so, the fella behind the counter goes, 'Hey, you cannae take pictures of these."

Me "The cakes?"

Man "The cakes!"

Me "Like a security thing?"

Man "Who knows? But I'm in no mood to argue, so I bought it and then as I'm moving away I say, 'Can I take a photo of it when I get home?"

Me "Did he laugh?"

Man "Not a flicker."

I did, though, and bought him a drink, which seemed like the right thing to do.

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Tube dogs

Felt tip dogs drawn in an inebriated state on thetube

Saturday, 20 November 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 20th November

(Article by Michael Holden)
Rush hour found me standing near a young couple seated on an underground train. They were headed for the airport and had the luggage to prove it. While others struggled gamely around their bags, the man hid his head in the free paper while she – with their baby strapped to her chest – talked about last night's TV.

Woman "I saw that Banged Up Abroad thing. It's scary what happens to these people. They're not like long-term pushers or anything. But they end up in all kinds of trouble."

Man (emerging from the paper) "Eh?"

Woman "That thing I watched. The people in prison overseas. It's terrible. It really scared me."

Man (vaguely) "Yeah."

Woman (fixating on bad things happening at airports and nodding toward the baby) "We won't have to put him through physio will we?"

Man "Physio?"

Woman "X-ray. I mean x-ray."

Man "No."

He opened the paper to show her an advert for a new film and pointed out an actress.

Man "Do you like her?"

Woman "She's got fatter. Fatter round the mouth."

Man (turning the page to an advert for a digital tablet) "They're really pushing these at the moment."

On the next page was a huge picture of a badly burned man.

Woman "WHAT'S THAT?"

Man "He ran through a bonfire."

Woman "WHY?"

Man (gleeful) "As a dare."

Woman "Oh no."

She looked away, rocked the baby and held it closer to her as if to shield it from all the idiocy of the world. I wished them luck.

Friday, 19 November 2010

Disturbing discoveries...

Unfortunate gentleman upon discovering his nostrils are merely drawn on...

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Felt tip monster #2

...& another (part of an occasional series)

Felt tip monster #1

Creatures made of pure felt tip...grrrrr

Saturday, 13 November 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 13th November

No nice animals were harmed in the making of this image.
(only a few nasty ones)
(Article by Michael Holden)
The morning after Halloween, the local pub's landlady was up a ladder, dismantling extensive decorations from the weekend, while one of the hardcore locals, a guy of around 65, finished a pint and looked up from his newspaper.

Man "Can I have another?"

Woman (from up on the ladder) "Help yourself."

He moved behind the bar, poured a drink and sat down again.

Man (looking at his beer) "I'm gonna stop drinking."

Woman "Why?"

Man (joking – but not entirely) "It says in the paper it's worse than crack. I reckon I'm gonna get into crack, go up a crackhouse."

Woman "Good luck."

Man "I reckon it's cheaper."

Woman "It won't be any cheaper than that – you ain't paid."

She came down carrying a decorative witch's cat and bunch of fake webs.

Man "That looks like my cat."

Woman (shocked) "You have a cat?"

Man "It's a bit feral. It follows me to the other pub, starts meowing, all that. So I feed it this and that. But then it goes off on a killing spree. Eats anything."

Woman "What like?"

Man "The other day it got a squirrel, then it walked past the pub with its tail sticking out of its mouth, trying to get it down. My mate, you know him, he's in a bad way. He thinks it's got two tails. It rattles him, he can't figure it out. Thinks he's imagining it."

Woman "And?"

Man "He's gone to rehab."

Woman "You didn't tell him?"

Man "Didn't want to break the spell."

Woman (fetching down more occult trinkets) "Fair enough."

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

'unwelcome space jazz'

Was just listening to Brian Eno on the wireless talking about imaginary musical genres...I'd love to hear some unwelcome space jazz!

(see also 'random thud'

Bastard suit

Wonderful quote from the Dr Feelgood documentary Oil City Confidential...

Saturday, 6 November 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 6th November

Yep! I'm available for tattoos & children's parties too!
- the knuckle tattoo 'toys' hails from a situation in a Brighton bar where upon being ejected from the premises by the door security the ejectee turned to said bouncer, held his fists up & loudly exclaimed 'What do you think these are?!? F*CKING TOYS??!?!'
Anyway, article follows shortly...

(Article by Michael Holden)
I was on a bus one evening as it stopped by the local fair. A man
boarded, came and sat upstairs directly in front of me, although we
were the only passengers. He looked a lot like someone who might work
at the fair, although I always thought having access to a vehicle
would be one of the perks of such employment. Either way, he was up on
the bus when he started talking, initially to himself, facing his
reflection in window.

Man 1 “I wish this driver would hurry up. I’ve only had two hours
sleep. I did nine hours on the rides. Can’t be strapping kids in if
I’m tired. Health and safety. Health and safety! Can’t sleep. Can’t
sleep in that room. Full of car boot stuff…every weekend. I’m gonn
have to have a word with her. And the spare room. She won’t shift it.
Every weekend…more and more.”

At the next stop a man got on with his young son, who was holding a
massive blue bear, the sight of which was enough to nudge the first
man from his monologue.

Man 1 “Been to fair?”

Man 2 “Yeah.”

Man 1 (addressing the kid) “Win that, did you?”

Kid (proudly) “Yeah.”

Man 1 “I’ll tell you how clean them bears.”

Kid “How?”

Man 1 “ What you want is a polythene bag full of bicarb. Like a
carrier bag. Stick the bear in and shake it up, give it a good shake.
It’ll come out good as new. It works better if you got a few of them.”

Kid “Bags?”

Man 1 “Bears.”

Man 2 (to his son) “You remember that now.”

Man 1 “You’ll have to go back and win some more.”

Man 2 “Yeah. We will”

Kid “Really?”

Man 2 “Maybe.”

Good luck, I thought. Just keep an eye on who’s strapping you into the rides.

Saturday, 30 October 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 30th October

On reflection would have liked to have added a penguin into the mix,
I like penguins. End of.
(article by Michael Holden)
By giving us what we thought we wanted whenever we wanted it, supermarkets have bred a reciprocal brand of super anxiety. Listen closely, and the aisles hum with a discontent peculiar to the resentment of dreams fulfilled. Down by the fresh meat fridges, I found two men bemoaning the very air that they breathed.

Man 1 (sifting through the giblets) "It's cold in here."

Man 2 "Colder than it used to be?"

Man 1 "For sure. You come in here in summer with a T-shirt on and you have to run round, get out before your core temperature plummets down."

Man 2 (pulling at his ears) "I can feel it in my ears. My ears are cold. That never used to happen."

Man 1 "It's just daft. Think about the energy."

Man 2 "It's unpleasant, is what it is. Maybe it's to keep you moving. Get you in and get you out. Like the fucking Crystal Maze.

Man 1 "On ice."

Man 2 "Exactly!"

Man 1 "It's gotta be a preservation thing. They fly this stuff in from wherever the fuck – Argentina – everybody hates that. So they have to keep it as long as possible, drop the temperature of the whole store."

Man 2 "That can't be good."

Man 1 "It's like I said: the energy."

Man 2 (grabbing a lump of meat and reckoning its heft as though he might use it as a weapon) "It all comes down to energy."

Man 1 "We should go somewhere else."

Man 2 (holding the joint at eye level and staring directly at it, Hamlet-style) "There isn't anywhere else though, is there?"

Man 1 "Not that I know of. Not round here."

Thursday, 28 October 2010

A hat made of noise

The hat with fury inside

From a small ads mis-print, think it was supposed to read 'furry'- perils of sloppy spelling kids!

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Bat skint

Our hero faces up to the reality of budget shopping...

(drawn during a spectacularly pointless meeting with my bank)

Decisions, decisions...

We've all been afflicted by the eternal 'which nose' conundrum haven't we?

Oh...just me then.

Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Atomic Kitten

Yep! Just that. Move along, nothing to see here

Saturday, 23 October 2010

Funnel Cat

The funnel of shame : (

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 23rd October

Funnily enough I saw a perfect ageing '70s throwback skinhead in Bethnal Green this morning - maybe there's a reserve somewhere where old youth cults go to live & occasionally let them out on special occasions...oh sorry, what's that you say? It's called Camden Market?
The more decrepit (& geeky) of you might also notice that the phone number I used is the old Swap Shop number - brings up scary visions of sex with the ghost of Noel Edmonds past - enjoy your breakfast!

(Article by Michael Holden)
Although the calibre of their contents may fluctuate, galleries remain a reliable source of strangers' conversations. Like people leaving the cinema, people staring at art like to discuss what they've seen. Sometimes, though, the more intriguing dialogues come from events unrelated to the pictures.

Man 1 (returning) "You see that graffiti?"

Man 2 "In here?"

Man 1 "No. In the toilet. I couldn't believe it. It's like going back in time."

Man 2 "How do you mean?"

Man 1 (spelling it out with his finger) "It says, 'NF', like the two letters, together. And then, 'Gay sex.' And then there's a phone number."

Man 2 "A mobile?"

Man 1 "Maybe, I dunno. What do you care?"

Man 2 "Well, it tells you how old it is, to a degree."

Man 1 "Either way, it was still like something you'd see in the 70s. Sort of thing people would write when you were growing up."

Man 2 "I guess those things are sort of timeless."

Man 1 "Nationalism and homosexuality?"

Man 2 "Are the NF still going?"

Man 1 "Well, they are in here."

Man 2 "Maybe it's art. Like an installation. We could ring the number."

Man 1 "What, you think Charles Saatchi's on the other end, going, 'Well done, you've spotted the art.'?"

Man 2 "What's the worst that could happen?"

Man 1 "Plenty."

Man 2 "Just say you've got the wrong number."

Man 1 (moving on) "No."

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

BBC Spending Review...

In the face of government cuts surely the BBC could buy into Cameron's 'Big Society' by replacing highly paid soap opera actors with volunteers clad in this stylish collection of t-shirts?
(Also available in 'Period Drama' & 'Shakespearean Tragedy')

Saturday, 16 October 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 16th October

Having been brought up at the seaside I know everything about fish & chips - FACT!
Read the article here
(article by Michael Holden)
The good fish and chip shop near me is and always has been run by a couple of contrasting dispositions, which, as they get older, seem ever more pronounced. She grows more talkative, while he becomes more contemplative, staring hard into the fryer, eyes on some unknown horizon. A look I call "thousand cod stare". He was doing this again the last time I went in, and then eventually he spoke.

Him "I wish I was somewhere hot."

Me (facetious, going for the cheap joke) "It's hot in here!"

Him (wearily) "I mean a country."

Me (busted) "I know, I know. You been on holiday?"

Him (getting into his stride, making his own joke) "I got something mapped out. Can't take the wife, though. What about you?"

Me "I was in Egypt in February."

Her (like I deserved to go away more often) "That was a long time ago."

Me "It was warm, though."

Her (having none of it) "But you come back and it's cold."

Me "It was cold before I went."

Him "You like it?"

Me (wanting to sound clever) "I like all that part of the world, you can see why they're always fighting over it."

He gazed into the boiling fat and then scooped out my dinner.

Him (with resignation, as though explaining great truths to an imbecile) "But the problem is: the big fish eats the little fish."

Me (words leaving mouth of their own accord) "Mostly, yeah. I suppose. I dunno."

His wife handed me my fish and he looked at me as if to say, "You just don't get it, do you?" And I'm still not altogether sure that I do.

Saturday, 9 October 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 9th October

Quite fond of this one despite virtually having to draw it twice due to a subtle mix of computer balls-up & a little touch of vintage f***wit-ery from yours truly...oops!
(Article by Michael Holden)
The idea that once you have paid for something you are entitled to complain about it is much in evidence at the gym, where whining about the facilities has become wildly popular of late. The nerve centre of this discontent is the steam room, itself a source of perennial complaints.

Man 1 (always complaining) "They blame it on the pipes. You never know, though. I think it's the door. You'd think people would have the common decency to shut the door!"

Man 2 (recently roped in) "Well they could put a spring on it."

Man 1 "It's a waste of resources, really. Take all the water in the pool. I mean, once it's full it's OK, you just recycle it, but filling it up …"

Man 2 " I Probably wouldn't use that much water in a year."

Man 1 "I've cut my consumption right down. I don't use the shower at home. I come here and use the shower most days."

Man 2 (pondering that) "Right."

Man 1 "I've got two sinks but I've narrowed it down so I only use one of them. My washing machine broke, and I didn't replace it. I figured out I could pay £400 and have a new washing machine or I could start going to the launderette. There's one 30 seconds' walk from me."

Man 2 (in auto response) "Yeah."

Man 1 "I go every two or three weeks. It works out around a fiver. So at that rate I'm ahead for about four or five years I reckon. And that's before you factor in the cost of the electricity. So I've lost the machine and I've got a load more storage space now."

Man 2 (seemingly sincere) "That's brilliant."

Man 1 (attentive to the bigger picture) "Yeah, but, I also stink."

Friday, 8 October 2010

Anger - new animation

A short piece I designed & directed at Picasso Pictures for Reach Out - one of several shorts using the experiences of real teenagers dealing with various issues.
Produced by Melissa Venet at Picasso Pictures
(huge thanks to Sophie Lodge for CGI & motion tracking)
You can see it in higher quality here

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Live painting @ Graffik 6th October

Another image from last night

Live painting @ Graffik 6th October

The exhibition at the Graffik Gallery on Portobello Road concluded with a really fun live painting session in the backyard where myself & Lewis Campbell shook paint at each other & generally had a great night. Big thanks to Lewis for letting me show some work in his exhibition, everyone at Graffik, & everyone who came along to see the work!
You can see more of Lewis' work here

Saturday, 2 October 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 2nd October

I seem to have been drawing a lot of animal / bus concoctions of late...must be something in the air...I research my demographics very thoroughly you know*
(*possibly a fib)

(Article by Michael Holden)
At a bus stop around 5pm two women, acquainted by their journey home, were discussing the lateness of the previous day's transport, a trip that one of them had missed out on and whose details the other eagerly relayed.

Woman 1 "Well it was packed."

Woman 2 "Because of the delay?"

Woman 1 "Because of the delay, so I had to go upstairs."

Woman 2 "I can't get up there any more. My legs won't have it."

Woman 1 "Well I'm not keen, but of course, once you get up there, the view looks very different, you see all kinds of things."

Woman 2 (sceptical) "Maybe."

Woman 1 "Up by London Road, you can see into one of the gardens, and there's two Shetland ponies kept there!"

Woman 2 "No!"

Woman 1 "Just there in the garden."

Woman 2 "You'd think the RSPCA would get involved."

Woman 1 "Well you wonder. I wondered if maybe the person had some land somewhere and they were just resting them there, I don't know."

Woman 2 (having none of it) "You'd think the animal rights would be on to them."

The bus arrived.

Woman 1 "We can sit upstairs if you like, maybe they're still there."

Woman 2 (after due consideration) "No."

I went to the upper deck, scanned backyards for tiny horses and saw none. And by the time my stop came the women had gone, too. Still, I have my mission for the autumn now – find the ponies. Exactly the kind of futile obsession that makes life bearable.

Monday, 27 September 2010

Saturday, 25 September 2010

3 day art exhibition

I'm showing a couple of pieces of work as part of this group exhibition at the Graffik Gallery 284 Portobello Road, London from 4th - 6th October

If you're interested in coming e-mail for entry

More details on the Facebook page here!/event.php?eid=119175494804077

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 25th September

as they say...It's all done with computers these days, I just press a button then f*** off for a massage & a cocktail usually...
(Article by Michael Holden)
It was All Ears' good fortune to be in New York last week, feeding bread into a rotary toaster at a breakfast buffet, when two young lions of the leisure industry – all shirts and laptops – joined the queue behind me.

Man 1 (clearly in awe of his subject) "We have quarterly meetings, and he's nothing but questions."

Man 2 (of the same opinion) "That's why these guys are who they are. He was an account manager at Morgan Stanley. They see things we don't see."

Man 1 "He's way down in the weeds. We were meeting and he starts asking how the chambermaids know when the room is checked out."

Man 2 "Shit!"

Man 1 "That's what I'm talking about. He doesn't have to worry about that."

Man 2 "But he does!"

Man 1 "Exactly. These guys are spinning stuff around and we don't even feel the motion."

Man 2 (rightly puzzled) What do you mean?"

Man 1 "They're way out there."

Man 2 (like that helped) "Right."

Man 1 "You can't learn that shit. It's instinctive."

Man 2 "The success instinct."

Man 1 "Damn right."

Man 2 "So what did you say?"

Man 2 "About the chambermaids."

Man 1 "Oh right. Well how the fuck would I know? I said I'd get back to him."

Man 2 "So how do they know?"

Man 1 "I don't know. I haven't asked yet."

Man 2 "Don't they just knock on the door, or phone the desk?"

Man 1 "No. I'm guessing there's computers involved."

Friday, 24 September 2010

Attack of the Brain-Dead Breakdancing Zombies insides

A few of the inside illustrations from the new Boy Zero book 'Attack of the Brain-Dead Breakdancing Zombies' by Peter Millett, published by Faber

Steal your mum's credit card kids & order YOUR copy here...

Attack of the Brain-Dead Breakdancing Zombies

Just received a copy of the second in the series of Boy Zero books by Peter Millett which I illustrated the cover & the insides

You can score a copy here...

Saturday, 18 September 2010

The Guardian - Michael Holden's All Ears 18th September

This week's article kind of made my skin crawl...I hope yours does too kids!

(Article by Michael Holden)
Being a compulsive listener, I try and keep my staring to a minimum as a kind of trade-off, but there are some things you can't take your eyes off, and some of them are talking too. In this case, it was a couple in a cafe: a man in his 50s with cigarette-yellow skin talking to a much younger woman whose pallor seemed mainly makeup.

Man (with sinister smile) "Say, 'Pretty please.'"

Woman (hesitant, and with a heavy accent) "Pretty please."

Man (squeezing her thigh) "Very good! You best hurry up or I'll be lonely."

Woman (halting again) "I try."

Man "I'll be quick. I do everything quickly. I used to run quickly. But now I need a new knee."

Woman "I have an English lesson."

Man "I do a special lesson. Very intensive, one to one. Over in the pub. We drink, we kiss. I teach you something, we have another glass of wine.

Woman (not visibly displeased by this proposal) "Perhaps."

Man "How far away from Prague do you live, is there a motorway?"

She shrugged.

Man (miming driving) "A fast road?"

She still didn't understand.

Woman "I must see Peter."

Man "Peter?"

Woman "Peter is problem?"

Man "No. I said I don't mind. Go now and come back quickly, or I shall be very sad. You understand?"

He mimed wiping tears away by way of illustration.

Woman (smiling) "Don't be sad."

She got up, left, and when I looked away I realised – the only one unhappy with the situation was probably me.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Anatidaephobia escalation

Anatidaephobia is defined as a pervasive, irrational fear that one is being watched by a duck...

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

the duck...the duck!

Anatidaephobia is defined as a pervasive, irrational fear that one is being watched by a duck...(see below)

Anatidaephobia (slight return)

'Anatidaephobia is defined as a pervasive, irrational fear that one is being watched by a duck' (see below)


'Anatidaephobia is defined as a pervasive, irrational fear that one is being watched by a duck'...