Festivals and Politics

In the last couple of months I have been commissioned to design TWO covers for the Croydon Citizen newspaper. Here are the results.

cover illustrations from The Croydon Citizen

cover illustrations from The Croydon Citizen

Though both inked with real ink and coloured with real, er Photoshop, their subject matters are quite different. May's cover was an amalgam of the annoying problem of fly-tipping in the Croydon borough with the, then, forthcoming general election. Politics is rubbish, indeed.

June's was to celebrate three community festivals taking place that month. Each 'strip' featured a London bus driving down the High Street near the end of Surrey Street. The first: Tech City (hence the modern street scene with sci-fi orange pipes and hovering digital signage). The second: The Summer of Love event in Wandle Park, channeling the spirit of 1967. The third: the Croydon Heritage festival celebrating all of Croydon's past but I was asked to go for the 1950s in order that the Routemaster bus made sense. I've also added some crocus decorations inspired by the new art installation by artists Aether and Hemera, commissioned for the Heritage Festival.

Each 'strip' contains people and buildings, but the eagle-eyed will notice that the clothes of the pedestrians alter slightly depending on what era they are in.

illustrations of pedestrians

illustrations of pedestrians

Also, I've endeavoured to mimic the architecture of Surrey Street in the background by changing the buildings. I wasn't until I did this illustration that I discovered that an old cinema - called The Palladium Cinema - used to stand at the end of Surrey Street, where The Market Tavern is now. Read more about it on Cinema Treasures and see a lovely photo of it in the 1950s on Flickr.

Illustration of the Palladium Cinema, Croydon

Illustration of the Palladium Cinema, Croydon

Who can you trust in a post-truth world?

Illustrations for The Long+Short inspired by London crowds

Illustration of a crowd of people

Illustration of a crowd of people

I was recently commissioned to create three illustrations for the digital magazine The Long+Short. It wasn't a straightforward commission as the concept of trust was integral to the article and it didn't immediately conjure up easy imagery. I persevered, though, and am pleased with the diverse trio of concepts I came up with. The above image is essentially about suspicion and is directly inspired by the oodles of people you see walking around central London. These characters mainly came from people I've seen in Trafalgar Square and Borough High Street.

Illustration of a jumbo jet with balloons

Illustration of a jumbo jet with balloons

The next image was about a loss of trust. 'Cautious Jumbo' was the unofficial title I gave it and you can hopefully see that someone on the plane felt the need to add some helium balloons to help it stay in the air.

Illustration of a girl in a breathing mask with flowers

Illustration of a girl in a breathing mask with flowers

The final image was a mixture of suspicion and lack of trust, I think. The woman is no longer confident that the sweet-smelling flowers are what they purport to be, hence the breathing mask.

The Long+Short is an online publication owned by the innovation charity Nesta, an organisation I did a body of other work for that you can see here.

Flaming Nora - art for sale

South London inspired art for sale in Crystal Palace retro emporium.

Illustrations of Croydon

Illustrations of Croydon

Crystal Palace's Flaming Nora are now displaying a whole stack of my painting and ink drawings in their lovely shop at 40 Church Road, SE19 2ET. The art is all inspired by various streets, views and people of South London, but mainly focusses on Croydon. All work is for sale, and is decorating many of the walls of their quirky and well-stocked retro and up-cycled furniture shop throughout December. Pop by for a set of 1950s chairs, and you may end up leaving with one of my pictures too.

Flaming Nora interior

Flaming Nora interior