Before writing me an email, you might find what you’re looking for here.
Here are the things I currently get asked the most - feel free to email if you still have a burning question!
Can you sign this book for me?
Of course. Order a copy to be sent to me (or send me the one you have) and let me have an address to send it back to. Email to ask!
Can I buy a print of…?
Yes indeed. If it’s not already in the shop, email me about making one for you.
Internships & Assistants
I’ve greatly enjoyed and benefitted from the help of assistants since the early 2000s. This is Graham, on the left, who was with us for the longest, and still helps out now - including with this website!
Sometimes we have periods without one (‘we’ is myself and partner Leigh), sometimes we have more than one - three part-timers was our record - and I have an accounts lady too who works one day a week. We’re not currently looking for an intern or assistant, but this doesn’t mean we won’t be at some point in the future.
Will you do my tattoo/wedding invite/portrait of…?
I’ve done a gazillion personal projects and there’ll be a gazillion more. But I do have to have 'Mole's Hierarchy of Needs' met:
- do I like the project opportunity?
- do I have the time?
- OK I might have the time - but do I have the motivation? (honestly?)
- will the project reward me either in terms of personal satisfaction, payment or knowing I’ve helped a chum?
- if they can’t pay, can this person do something for me in return, maybe?
- will it make a total stranger really really happy?
- are they asking me to draw a beloved animal? That’s a stone cold nope.
- are they asking for something that’s well within my wheelhouse?
- or maybe this might be a chance to do something a bit challenging in the safety of an ‘off-client’ situation.
If I can, and I want to, and I like the project, I will - so do email!
Portfolio Advice & Consulting
I’ve spent a lot of time over the years helping other people with their work in both workshop and formal educational settings.
I love doing talks and seminars when I can, and individual folio sessions by Zoom can be arranged.
Help with college/university/school projects
Always happy to help.
- If you write to me about your work, myself (or my partner) will be happy to give you some folio feedback,
- I'll always gladly answer questionnaires and do interviews, too. But the timing of this will be determined by workload i.e.: we know your project is urgent, but to quote a friend of ours, "your failure to plan is not my emergency!" - so don't send it last minute! And DO send us the finished project - you'd be amazed how many people don't bother to do this, and it's a professional and well-mannered way to acknowledge our input.
Do you have a Skillshare or any online tutorials?
From a very young age I was heavily involved in education and lettering workshops while juggling an illustration career.
I’m currently focussing on developing the direction of my own work for the next 20 years, so I don’t have much mental space to offer ‘how-tos’.
I do, however, record a lot of process videos and time-lapses which you can see on my Motion page, and my recent Adobe Live series may be of interest!
Do you do colouring books?
We did ours in 2003! And I’ve never had the urge to make one since - as much as I adore working in black ink, I love colour, and I like making the whole illustration, not just the outlines.
As far as we know we were the first people to create a modern illustration colouring-in book, albeit a slightly subversive one that was also a puzzle book. It was provided with a set of crayons, and more than a touch of darkness. It wasn’t cute, but it was full of murky humour. I still have a copy or two, and I’m going to blog it one of these days.
I’ve got no desire to do another one (plenty of people are really good at them - I love Millie Marotta's colouring books) but I have been asked four times by publishers now!
I don’t see any awards or gongs on your website, why’s that?
* Small Blog Alert.*
I do have some, but they’re not on the site as I honestly don’t think they’re that important, or would influence whether a client thinks I’m suitable for a job.
Despite many fun hours being a competition judge, I made the decision to stop entering them a few years ago, having realised that I’d started to question the motives behind both running and entering them.
Some people love entering competitions, but I’ve narrowed it down to one illustration competition I’m happy to enter now, which is the V&A Illustration Awards, run by one the UK’s oldest institutions, and my policy is only to enter something when I feel would sit well in the setting of the organisation, and alongside company that that competition attracts. The process of surveying a year's work and identifying something to fit the brief is a useful and contemplative exercise, whether I win anything or not!
I wrote a full article about this here