Sunday, 31 January 2010


As seasons turn and hairlines recede, the need for change has become ever more apparent. While my life, health and fitness level could all do with a complete overhaul, I'll start small by redesigning my website.
Layout for my old site's menu page, from back in 2002. I think I kept this around until 2005.

It's actually been a while since I had a personal site. My previous one was a sprawling mess of rollover images with a needless wealth of self-important information on pretty much every personal project I'd ever attempted to make marketable. When the hosting site disappeared I never bothered to relocate the site and have since relied on this blog and MySpace (trust me, it was relevant in 2006) as my main web presences. With my attentions more on "House Guest" and its reception, the blog is updated a fair amount while the other sites have died a cruel death at the hands of public disinterest. Now that "House Guest" is close to running its course on the festival circuit and I'm nearing the end of production for several projects (including the agonisingly slow-to-gestate- fourth Struwwelpeter album) I've outlined a plan to best represent myself as a professional freelancer, while showcasing the development of ongoing work:

•A main site to serve as a hub that brings everything I do together. Chiefly this would link to all music, film and book stuff I've produced while also giving an overview of my ability and freelance experience.
•A redesigned Struwwelpeter site to help promote CDs and "The Book of Women" when it is released.
•Archival mini-sites for certain projects ("Mitchells In England", "House Guest", selected CD releases etc.) that I feel are ready to have a line drawn under them.

Putting these all together, the scrawled site map is huge and a little intimidating, especially as I've resolved to use it as an excuse to get up to speed with CS4.
This is a proposed layout for the main site's menu page.It was designed last August to go with the look of my current DVD showreel. The plan then was to get the site redesign done by the end of the year, but something shiny caught my eye and suddenly six months had gone by. I think I'm in a more suitable frame of mind - specifically a horribly ill one that sees me mostly housebound - to kick things into gear now.

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Dulcet Tones

I was interviewed last night for the Derby City Film Festival's podcast, to preview "House Guest"'s inclusion next month.
Between me calling in at 2:30am and my throat still hanging in tatters I come off as a monotone, raspy-voiced ass but it was a great opportunity to pimp the film some. Many thanks to Kris at DCFF for extending the invitation.
You can stream the podcast here or download it and keep it forever and ever.You can get yourself tickets to the event here, "House Guest" screens as part of the Animation Short Film Group - Saturday Feb. 20th 1:00 PM - Community Theater.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Pages To Turn

Apologies to any of you who may have had issues with ordering any of my books over xmas. Lulu have ordinarily proved themselves to be pretty dependable but I guess all bets are off during the holiday period. A little belatedly, I finally received my own copy of the "That Isn't Funny, You Stupid Child" reissue and I have to say it's a vast improvement over the original edition in terms of print quality and binding.
I'm really getting a kick out of the whole book thing and have a whole bunch of ideas scribbled down for future releases. I can safely say that the reissues of "Mitchells In England" Volumes 2 and 3 are the next in line, which will cover all the old material and get my bibliography up to date.
The original covers for "Mitchells In England" Volumes 2 & 3

After that I have a few new graphic novel ideas, some short stories for children (believe it or not) and a couple of non-narrative concepts. These will be pretty simple to put together as they consist of material that already exists. One I'm thinking of would be a full-colour retrospective of my graphic design and illustration work completed over the last decade. The tricky thing will be going through all the backup CDs/DVDs/external HDs to locate the material, but I know it's all there somewhere.
Two others would both be black and white and thus a lot cheaper to produce. By the end of this year I imagine I'll have enough content to put out a book of collected storyboard artwork that would include the early animated music videos, "House Guest", both versions of "Ground Running" and the handful of animated projects I'm chiseling away at these days.What I've already started work on is a collection of sketchbook excerpts that showcase the gestation of a bunch of projects. Beyond the films these also include layouts and concepts for comics, commissions and projects that never came to be. I'm always fascinated by the published sketchbooks of illustrators and artists I admire, and it may be construed that I'm assuming that others will be similarly interested in mine. In truth I fully appreciate the virtual non-marketability of these more self-indulgent releases, it's more to scratch the personal itch of 'it sure would be nifty to get all this shit into a book'. And of course I can further exasperate my family and friends by extending my product line and dooming them to a lifetime of accepting gifts bearing my name with gritted teeth and forced grace.
I'm aiming to get the sketchbook collection done by June. Here's a proposed cover; title/cock visibility possibly subject to change when it comes out.

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Eight is enough

Happy 2010 everyone. Between Faith No More reuniting, the hugely encouraging response to "House Guest" (as a film and a book) plus me losing enough weight to finally climb stairs without crying, 2009 is going to be pretty hard to beat. This year's under a lot of pressure to wow me.It's already started on a good note - it turns out that House Guest will be getting eight screenings at this year's Clermont Ferrand Film Festival as part of the panorama Zombies, Vampires and Other Living Dead Creatures. Good news indeed.
The screenings are spread across five different venues, all of which are within a fairly short radius and marked down in this handy map the festival website has put up. The places and times (CET) are as follows:

Faculté de Droit
41, boulevard Gergovia
Saturday, 30th Jan, 5pm
Monday, 1st Feb, 9pm
Friday, 5th Feb, 5pm

Cinéma Jaude
Centre Jaude
Sunday, 31st Jan, 8:15pm

Grand Amphithéâtre Gergovia
29, boulevard Gergovia
Tuesday, 2nd Feb, 3pm
Saturday, 6th Feb, 7pm

Cinéma Les Ambiances
7 rue Saint-Dominique
Wednesday, 3rd Feb, 6pm

Cinéma Le Capitole
32, place de Jaude
Thursday, 4th Feb, 1pm