|13 June 2010
Another year has passed since my last news update. I have avoided Conventions (except
Bristol and, all being well, Birmingham in October) and the gallivanting I indulged in last year
because I decided to do some work this year. I'm almost finished my fourth issue of Avengers
Prime and hope to finish the long delayed Wolverine Annual in the not too distant future.
23 May 2009
In my last post, almost a year ago, I said I was contending with the backlog of work and hoped
to be back on track soon. Things didn't quite go to plan so I shouldn't be surprised that I have
had a few queries as to why my output has reduced so much and whether my 'wrist problem' is
becoming more debilitating.
Firstly, thanks to those who have expressed concern but my 'wrist problem' (not RSI or carpal
tunnel syndrome-- read the September 2007 post below) is more of an annoyance than a
disability. I have figured out a number of ways to overcome any restrictions but I still had to
shorten my working day and that does prevent me from maintaining the 'head of steam' which
usually keeps me focused. BUT, the real cause of my recent tardiness is that I've been having
such a good time in the real world.
For years I turned down the majority of convention invitations I received because they clashed
with family obligations but, after my children were both married last year, I didn't have reason
not to accept-- and, after all of the domestic upheaval of 2008, it seemed like a good time to
travel a little and renew some old acquaintances.
In September 08 my wife and I revisited the Avilles Comic Con organised by Jorge, Diego and
all the members of the organisation. Avilles is a truly unique Convention. Its More like a rest
home for comic creators than a comic convention.
In October 08 I revisited the Mid-Ohio-Con and had the opportunity to spend some time with
Chris Claremont thanks to James Henry the Managing Director of the Mid-Ohio-Con. Despite
having done a fair amount of work with Chris rarely met face to face. Then, while stateside took
an opportunity to visit friends in New York.
In April 09 we attended two conventions in italy. Lanciano nel Fumetto organised by Luca
Veronesi, with Helena and Gemma. It was a small and very friendly affair with three hour
lunches and four hours for dinner. The food was fantastic but with so many generous courses
it beggars the question why so many Italians remain slim. The following weekend we were in
Naples for the Napoli COMICON. Organised by Claudio Curico-- Enrico, Luca and the rest of his
team. Once again, we enjoyed fantastic hospitality and St Elmo's castle is undoubtedly the most
spectacular venue of any convention I have attended. In between the two conventions my wife
and I spent a few days in Rome as guests of Panini Comics. Thanks to Stefano Munarini and
Just two weeks later I was at the Bristol International Comic Expo, organised by Mike Allwood .
It was a much smaller event this year but possibly one of the most fun. Although I have to say
the fact I got to see the new Star trek movie certainly helped elevate my mood.
That brings things up to date and I have no other conventions planned until the International
Comics Show in Birmingham Oct 3rd and 4th 2009.
So its back to the drawing board. I'm still working on the three 38 page annuals for Marvel-- FF,
Daredevil and Wolverine. I'm way behind any schedule I may have set myself because, in
addition to all my gallivanting, progress on the annuals has been slowed by frequent requests
from Marvel to do various covers and one-offs. The most recent is Uncanny X-Men-- Dark Days.
20 July 2008
The sketches I have posted in the latest update are not for sale but I hope to do more for offer
to anyone on the Commissions list in the next few months. As I have already mentioned on Matt
Platis' Forum, both my children were married this year so things have been hectic, in the nicest
possible way, and I'm still contending with the backlog of work that accumulated while I've
been busy celebrating.
Thanks for your patience.
2 September 2007
Not really news, more a clarification of facts. But first, I would like to thanks all those well-
wishers who have e-mailed me at my site concerned for my health because of my tardiness in
making posts to my website and my absence from Matt Platis’ Forum.
As I have mentioned previously, what I euphemistically refer to as my ‘wrist problem’ has
forced me to work at a slower rate and to limit the use of my right hand— less drawing, typing,
using a computer mouse or anything that requires sustained dexterity (but worst of all no
swimming, Badminton or anything that requires vigorous rotational movements or flicks of the
My ‘wrist problem’ IS the result of a broken arm BUT the injury occurred many years ago when I
was thirteen—I took a 30ft nosedive from a tree onto a tarmac playground… fortunately my
head absorbed most of the impact and I escaped with a single fracture of the right ulna.
My arm healed and all seemed well until, in my twenties, my wrist started to sublux (dislocate)
because of a condition known as a 'Triangular fibrocartilage complex injury'. The Ulna (outside
of the wrist), being without a bone to bone joint, is held in place by a web of ligaments that
allow complex rotational movement and act as a cushion between the ulna carpal gap.
Simplistically, the Triangular Fibrocartliage complex is a net that holds the Ulna in place and
the TFCC injury is a ‘gap’ in the net so, depending on the direction of the stress applied, the
Ulna can slip through the gap. The TFCC is a fairly common sporting injury and usually no more
than a minor inconvenience so I never gave it much thought until, as I grew older, the
frequency and severity of subluxing increased to such a degree that it began to destabilise
the Radius Carpal joint—which is far more debilitating. Five or six years ago I was losing a
maximum of two or three weeks a year because of the TFCC injury but last year it was over two
The wrist joint is extremely sophisticated and any currently available surgical intervention only
offers a very limited reward but carries a high risk of impaired dexterity—and, possibly, an
acceleration in the onset of an arthritic condition.
I can still draw (Its silly things like stiff door-handles, stubborn pen tops and shaking hands
that pose problems) and I may have continued the way I was going for a years, if I kept my hand
permanently strapped up, but I decided to reduce my drawing hours and begin focused
exercises in an to attempt to build up the wrist ligaments and slow the inevitable degradation—
and if I’m really lucky maybe even improve the situation. Time will tell.
Anyway, in the grand scheme of things my ‘wrist problem’ is extremely minor and only really
significant because of its impact on my comic work. I have been able to use my time off to catch
up on DIY, gardening and all those other things I usually neglect, so life is good.
Thanks again to all those who expressed concern or support.
16 April 2007
Please note that I had no input on the Catwoman page currently on auction at ...
I can only assume this is an inked photocopy.
15 March 2007
Further to the news item of 15 November 2006 (below) in regard of
art forgeries I offer an amusing sample of a forgery forwarded to me
by Susan Callaghan who found the drawings in the Manchester
Metropolitan University copy of, "How to Draw the Marvel Way".
Click on the image for a larger view.
17 January 2007
I have had quite a few enquiries to my website address in regard to Original art-sales and
auctions. I hope to get organised enough to arrange sales or auctions within the next few
months-- although regular viewers will know I have been saying that for almost a year. I have
also had a number of people ask to be alerted about any auctions. I just don't have the time to
e-mail so many people individually so I have set up a separate e-mail address for anyone
interested in being notified about art sales or auctions.
Anyone who writes to this address will be added to the address book so that each auction can
be preceded by a mail drop to all interested parties. I have started this early to allow plenty of
time for folk to get their name on the address book. BUT, as I have said above, it may be a
while before I get organised so please don't expect any sales for a little while.
15 November 2006
Regular visitors to the site will know that I had been updating the site on a monthly basis until
July, four months ago. They may also have been aware of technical difficulties a few months
ago-- when the Homepage vanished for about a week. The glitch was cause by an upgrade to
the site by the host service. Most of the bugs have been sorted but there may still be a few
inactive links or missing pages.
Another reason for my delay is that I have already posted quite a selection of oddities and I
don't want to keep posting more of the same (AND since I have been working far more slowly
than usual this year I've had very little new work to add). I have added a few more examples of
work-in-progress in response to requests to my site e-mail address but I don't want the site to
become a 'how-to...' book-- I have resisted invitations to do one of those for years because I
feel I am still in the process of figuring it all out myself.
Another, more serious and unpleasant concern is in regard to images being downloaded from
my site. I have had two people contact me to say they have been offered pages that they
believed were taken from the site, printed on art-board, inked and presented as an authentic
original. I don't think there is anyway I can stop the thieves, except by ceasing further posting
or discontinuing my site altogether. The pages in question were from the 'Unpublished pencils'
section. Anyone offered one of these images should know that the pencils remain un-inked
unless there is a link beside the page with a scan of the inks. So, caveat emptor.