Thursday, 19 April 2012

It's going to be a zombie Christmas

Want to send some unique zombie Christmas cards or gifts to your "loved ones"? Then I've collected a whole of stuff on this Squidoo lens.

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Daniel Craig Caricature

Caricaturing leading man type actors I find is very difficult. Daniel Craig, star of James Bond films like Casino Royale, has craggy features that would appear at first glance to be easy to caricature but in reality his features are so well balanced that an exaggeration in the wrong area can end up making him look like someone completely different.
Anyway, enough excuses - see my effort above

Friday, 6 April 2012

Customizing Mousepads with your text

If you want mousepads that you can customize with your own text or pictures but are unfamiliar, or simply don't want to get overly involved with, the tool at zazzle for customizing existing mousepad designs then I have created a "lens" at squidoo with some examples.

Customizable mousepads at Squidoo

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Brad Pitt pencil sketch

I've always quite liked Brad Pitt's films - Twelve Monkeys,Se7en and Fight Club were excellent films but I suppose lately he has become a victim of his own success, a mega media icon so huge that any film he's involved in becomes about the size of his air conditioned trailer and how many times Angelina Jolie visited him on set rather than the film itself.
Here's a stylised sketch loosely based on his role in Fight Club.
Brad Pitt pencil drawing sketch

Sunday, 1 April 2012

Why does weekend weather always suck?

As I was lying in bed the other day ruminating on why we just had five days of the hottest, sunniest weather I have ever seen in March then come the weekend and it is bloody freezing I thought "I know, I'll express myself throught art!"
I guarantee when we return to work on Monday the weather will pick up where it left off on Friday. The curse of the working man eh?

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Zazzle Featured Products Today's Best Award

Everyday the powers at Zazzle choose some of the products in their enormous database to be featured on the front page. I was lucky enough to have two products on the same day. Here they are ...

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Zombie Trainspotters TShirt sold

Sold one of these today and it's off to the UK! Think someone took advantage of the SHINEONSPRNG 30% discount on all white apparel at Zazzle (ends 29th March 2012)

Monday, 26 March 2012

Skull with sunglasses tshirt

And now ... the skull that wears sunglasses - Ray Ban sunglasses I might add.

Skull wearing Union Jack Sunglasses zazzle_shirt

Yes I am indeed Zombie Santa.

Skull drawings

skull drawing skeleton anatomy
There's something satisfying about drawing skulls. It's also a very useful exercise to draw the skull that will assist when drawing faces and portraits. Understanding the underlying structure is important when drawing any anatomy.
I used ink and brush mainly to execute this, with some pen to firm up the details in a couple of places.

Friday, 23 March 2012

No Bunny Boilers TShirt Sold

It's been a slow start to the year ... but some things like this have sold

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Run Like You Jumped Bail Sports TShirt

Some times you need a bit of motivation to go running ...
Run Like You Jumped Bail

Monday, 19 March 2012

Customizable Sport and Fitness Liberty Water Bottle

Design also available on a Liberty water bottle from
Ladies Customizable Slogan Sport and Fitness design

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Customizable sport and fitness tshirt

The final inked design in a tshirt available from
Ladies Customizable Slogan Sport and Fitness shirt

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Running girl pencils inked

girl running or jogging drawing
I inked this in the traditional way, with a No.4 Daler and Rowney synthetic haired brush and scanned it in. I had noticed that there were some minor improvements that I could make. I made the lower front leg a bit longer, and the tilted the rear leg a couple of degrees to give a more dynamic look.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Another running girl pencil sketch

I'm getting a bit obsessed with drawing the ideal profile or silouhette of a running girl ....
girl running jogging in profile
I think she's more jogging than running this time ...

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Adding the Official Tweet button to Blogspot (Blogger)

The Tweet button is now a necessity if you want to connect with the social network. There is a post on that shows the relative merits of shares to Facebook versus Twitter shares.
So I wanted this button but a quick browse of Google I found an outdated button from tweetmeme who themselves recommend the Twitter button. To be absolutely honest I found it odd to generate the required text. Anyway this is what you need to do

1. Go to your dashboard and under Design click Edit HTML
2. Click the Expand Widget Templates
3. Search for <div class='post-header-line-1'/>
4. Under this insert the following code

<div style='float:right;padding:4px;'>
<a class='twitter-share-button' data-lang='en' expr:data-url='data:post.url' href=''>Tweet</a>
<script>!function(d,s,id){var js,fjs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(!d.getElementById(id)){js=d.createElement(s);;js.src="//";fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js,fjs);}}(document,"script","twitter-wjs");</script>

The most important part is the expr:data-url='data:post.url' especially the expr:data. I have noted some snippets leave this out and I don't know how they work as the xml processor engine won't produce a value without the expr: in front of the data-url. Also without data-url all you'll get is the main blog URL and you really want the specific URL of the post. Well, I think so anyway.

6. Save your template and view the blog. You should see the tweet button appear as if by magic.

There are other attributes that are listed on the Twitter Developer page that may be of some use but I haven't looked that closely at it.

I admit this is a quick hack and that the javascript is something but without it all I get is a "Tweet" link. I'm going to try other snippets that I find and see if it is absolutely necessary. Sorry I lost the page that I originally got the code from.

Saturday, 10 March 2012

My design gets some heart

An new version of my sport tshirt design with the girl running from an extreme perspective angle. This time the background is a heart shape.

Friday, 9 March 2012

Hulk smash puny doodle!

The Hulk is one of my all time favourite comic characters. Wouldn't it be great to turn into a raging engine of destruction when you're angry and just smash everything that's annoying you? No? Well, maybe that's just me and my unresolved anger issues.
Drew this without any pencils, just straight to paper using a fine tipped pen - it's a doodle after all. Probably should have been concentrating on that training course I was in but somehow I doubt that logging a call in a web based help desk system is going to totally bamboozle me. It's not as if I've never heard of the f**king internet is it? Sorry, that's my anger speaking again.
hulk drawing

Running girl extreme perspective design

I "road tested" my drawing in front of a couple of friends and they pointed out what I suspected - the figure was wrong mainly around the angle of the foot and the thigh area. So I modified it and luckily didn't have to carry out any heavy structural alterations!

That'll teach me to publish before getting an opinion ...

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Pencil portrait of Angelina Jolie

What is it about scrap paper that you can often produce your best work, yet when you sit down in front of a drawing board with "proper" paper and tools it all goes to hell? Anyway, someone's getting some free advertising today!
I'm quite pleased with this drawing of Angelina Jolie, I think it's recognisable.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Running and Fitness TShirt

A little variation on the design. You can still customize it but you'll have to add your own text if you want ;-)
girl running exteme perspective drawing

Monday, 5 March 2012

Customizable Fitness Tshirt

I inked the drawing from the previous post in the traditional way - brush, dip pen and hunched over back :-). When I scanned it in I felt the girl's outline was a bit rough and inconsistent in places so I cleaned it up a bit, imported into Inkscape and used the extremely useful Trace function to "smooth it out" before exporting back out and into PS.
* Edit : I have made a slight alteration - I hope improvement - on the design as I felt it had some issues around the perspective *

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Running Girl Work in progress

I have decided for this design to go "oldschool" as they say. I used Photoshop to get the girl's figure right (it's great to resize and rotate parts of a sketch), printed it off then traced it onto card. Once the figure was traced I added the buildings which I had sketched out in the simplest terms in Photoshop. I've tried to use an extreme angle here to make the image as dynamic as possible.
Here are the almost completed pencils which I'm going to ink in the traditional style.

Friday, 2 March 2012

Colin Farrell Caricature

Colin Farrell caricature
Here's my attempt at Irish actor Colin Farrell. For me he's one of those hit and miss type actors - probably been in more stinkers than hits but the films he's been good, like In Bruges, he's been very, very good and at least he has character.
Caricaturing is a skill that is hit and miss for me too unfortunately, it's about exaggerating a certain set of features that make a face unique but without going so far that it becomes unrecognisable. I'm not there yet.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Craic Dealer TShirts, Key Chains and Buttons

Some of my Craic Dealer range all gathered together ... for your "convenience" ;-)

I Love tshirts blog features Craic Dealer Tee

Mind Design Grafx has been kind enough to feature my tshirts again. Take a look at his really cool tshirts blog I Love TShirts

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

The Engineer from the Authority

The Engineer from the Authority drawing comic art Sinclair Elliott
You may be wondering what's in my and improved header - it's The Engineer from The Authority published under DC Comics Wildstorm imprint. I remember browsing the graphic novel, making a snap decision to buy it having being utterly blown away, not only by Bryan Hitch's awesome art (ably inked by Paul Neary), but also the sheer scale of Warren Ellis' story.
I think Bryan Hitch was at the height of his abilities during this run. The last thing I saw him draw was his run on Marvel's Fantastic Four #554-#568 about 3 years ago and since then I haven't come across much by him except the odd cover but what I have seen doesn't seem to be quite as epic as this period of his work.
I was so totally inspired by his stuff that I started to try and bring some of his exacting style into my work, so here's my attempt at the Engineer.

Monday, 27 February 2012

Craic Dealer bumper sticker now in colour

Now with lots more colour - Let's really celebrate those stereotypes

Sunday, 26 February 2012

Girls Rock tshirt gone to France!

One of my Girls Rock tshirts has gone to France. So "Merci beaucoup" to the buyer - hope you are very happy with the garment :-)

Saturday, 25 February 2012

Muppet Movie 2012

Initially I wasn't going to see the new Muppet Movie even though I have a Cineworld Unlimited card. But a friend convinced me and I have some personal issues which means I was looking for something to take my mind away from the "real world". I wasn't expecting much and I got a huge surprise - it was very funny indeed, laugh out loud and get strange looks funny. To be honest I personally never found Kermit or Miss Piggy particularly endearing when I used to watch the Muppets as a kid, but I loved Fozzy Bear, Animal and the dog who plays the piano (I forget his name and I won't be a slave to Google) so it was great to see them again
The humour is contemporary and and there's a bit of nostalgia thrown in for good measure. In fact, I doubt they were aiming the movie at kids at all. Parents will probably drag their kids, who won't be able to understand the lack of CGI, along to see it.
Stars Jason Segel and Amy Adams. Flight of the Conchords star Bret McKenzie provides some of the soundtrack

A definite 9 out of 10 for me

Don't watch any trailers as it's not a particularly long film - just go along a see it

I Love T-Shirts Blog

Someone has been kind enough to feature two of my tshirts on their blog. It's at I love tshirts

It's not just Irish tshirts - there are some other cool designs as well so it's worth a look.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Drawing of the Pharoah at Luxor Temple

luxor temple pharoah drawing
About 2 years ago, before the troubles in Egypt, I took a cruise down the Nile on a riverboat. If anyone wants to see a lot the temples and ancient architecture on both sides of the Nile and have a relaxing holiday I thoroughly recommend this type of holiday. All the excursions to the temples were prearranged, so it up early in the morning, do some sightseeing and then back to the boat for a filling lunch and some lazing out in the sun.
I tried to do some drawing and whilst I was at Luxor I drew one of the large pharoah statues that flank the entrance of the temple. This was done with a fine tipped pen straight onto paper without any pencils. I often like to work this way to challenge myself to get shapes down first time.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Review of zombie christmas card from Zazzle

photo of a zombie christmas card produced by zazzle
I do actually purchase my own products. Hey, if I don't buy my own stuff, how can I expect others to do the same? So, I was very pleased with the cards I received. They were well packed in a stiff backed envelope. The cards themselves were printed on glossy stock. The image was very sharp and the colours were well balanced. I suppose the only criticism was that you'll need to watch out for smudging when you write your greeting on the inside as it is glossy like the outside of the card.
Oh yes, and always bear in mind that Zazzle products are shipped from the States - I think there was a two/two-and-a-half week delivery time on these cards.

Order yours here ;-)

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

I'm a Zazzle Pro Seller!

I have recently been admitted to the exalted ranks of the Zazzle Prosellers (basic)! Hurrah!
For those that don't know about this award that Zazzle offer take a look at this page, all the details about what you have to achieve to get the badge. My story is that I joined Zazzle a long time ago - 2004 to be exact - and created one, yes a grand total of one, design. Naturally I thought this was the apex of human artistic achievement and was disappointed when it didn't sell at once. So I left it and forgot about the world of print on demand and returned to drawing comics and fantasy art.

Literally years later I got an email from Zazzle saying "You recently sold 1 copy of your product, Bunny Boiler". I was so stunned that someone, somewhere had purchased one of my designs that I immediately embarked on a quest to reach pro seller status. Believe me, it's been quite tough spending time of designs convinced you've created something special and yet seeing that horrifying message when you filter the products you created by daily views and seeing 0 views. I hope that what I am selling is my own unique view and that others enjoy my designs enough to purchase them, and it still gives me a thrill when I get that email!
By the way here's the updated version of Bunny Boiler - the first thing I did after I got the sale notification

Monday, 20 February 2012

Craic Dealer tshirt now on white

My Craic Dealer tshirt previously only available in a mono chrome design has now been released for white and light coloured shirts (listen to me - I'm practically talking about myself in the third person). The leprechaun in eye popping technicolour!

Craic Dealer keychain

I've released another Craic Dealer product into the wilds of the internet ... go free, find yourself noble keychain!

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Ladies Customisable Sport TShirt

Well, now the ladies can get a chance to wear something that will tell them - "It's time to stop the gym feeding off my bank account like a parasite and put some good ol' fashioned wear and tear on their equipment!"
I'm pleased I got the woman's outline to look feminine but still athelic and powerful.

It works well as a spaghetti tshirt as well