Posts Tagged ‘space’

The Amateur Astronomer’s Journal: My New Book.

June 12, 2013

Hello!  Hope you’re all doing well!

Firstly I am super sorry I haven’t updated the blog in a while I have been mega busy with some projects and there’s one I’d like to show off today.

This is the cover for my new book.

cover

 

This has been in the making for roughly the last 2 months, although it’s been in planning for a lot longer. It’s a fictional comic in which I’ve done my best to marry together some of my favourite subjects: space and astronomy, science and soppyness. It’s told from the perspective of a female amateur astronomer detailing some of her finds and wonders and I’m really proud of it. Here’s one of the 28 pages.

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You can pre-order it right now from my shop!

It’s going to be available as of next Friday (21st) although if you’re local to Glasgow you should come along to the launch night!  Where my good friend Gill Hatcher is also launching her new book ‘Bunny Behind the Moon’. It’ll be a super night and we’ll be doing some drawing and colouring in and other fun activities.

So that’s my big news! I’ll keep you all updated with other book news, in the meantime take care.

And keep looking up!

Neil

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Things about space that you probably didn’t need to know

January 13, 2012

Hello!

Hope you are well and having a great new year!

As many of you know I get a little bit excited and giddy when I start blabbing about space, I usually get the space bug periodicity around the winter months when the skies are darker and there’s less daylight hours. Anyways I thought I’d make a few pictures about some of the wee bits I’ve learned so far about space and astronomy.

I hope you find them insightful!

Extra fact! The north star’s real name is ‘Polaris’.

Extra fact! In 5 million years our own sun will become a nebula, I am gutted I won’t be around to see it.

Extra fact! From a distance binary stars just look like normal stars, it’s not until you peer through a telescope you can see that it’s actually 2 stars really close together.

Fascinating!

Well I hope you enjoyed my post, as always any feedback is more than welcome!

Take care!

nx

A Wave of Productivity

May 24, 2011

It’s funny how I seem to go through little patches of productivity. Days go by without having drawn anything with me knowing all too well that I’ve got shit tons of stuff to do but as soon as I get down to it I feel like I could lock myself indoors for weeks on end untill all my projects are complete.

Anyways that’s how I felt today, I got a lot done towards the book I’m illustrating, made a wee T-shirt design and finished a painting.

Let me share. This is a design I made because I love space and all things spacey so I drew this up with the intention of getting it printed onto bags and t-shirts so other fellow space fans can be proud of their space love.

I also did a lot of work for the book I’ve been yammering on about forever but I’ll explain all that stuff in a separate post once it’s done. I also finished a painting today, although it’s hard for me to tell when I’ve finished a painting I always feel that it’s missing something so I usually leave it for a weeks and then come back to it with a fresh head.

This will (If i still like it) be one of the smaller pieces I’ll be exhibiting at the end of the year along with tons more robot paintings.

As always any feedback is more than welcome, and please be sure to check out my shop as I’m always putting up new stuff!

take care!

nx

Just Draw

April 21, 2011

I’ve always been a firm believer in sketchbooks. I think it’s vital for any creative to keep paper and writing implements within arms reach at all times. I myself have got sketchbooks of all shapes and sizes in almost all the rooms in my house as well pocket-sized and bag friendly pads.
But having paper around is one thing, having ideas around is another. And I guess I just haven’t been having any ideas lately. I dunno if it’s because of the mental weight of commissioned work or even the stresses of trying to find work but nothings really been poppin in the noggin.
SO this week I’ve just been saying to myself ‘just draw’ just for the fun of drawing, like back in my school days where I’d plaster my jotters with ninja turtles and monsters along with the odd link or sonic. Mainly because I much prefered dreaming away in my own little world than listening to the teacher.

Right I’ll shut up now, here’s a scan of my sketchbook(click it for a larger view). I’m going to try really hard to get one up once or twice a week.

Take care!

nx

Cool Space Facts!

January 14, 2011

It may a surprise to you but I actually have a day job, yes believe it or not my doodles don’t quite cut a living. Anyways what I’m getting at is I work as a teacher in a community arts centre, me being the art teacher, and today I was doing a little class on space (our solar system specifically).

It went really well actually and I actually got quite animated and excited whilst I was doing my little presentation, anyways I’d like to share with you some cool space facts! This was actually one of the handouts from today…

I hope you found it interesting! I personally am a massive space geek and I’m holing out for a new telescope for my birthday (february 17th guys!).

In other news I have some cool new screen printing diplodocus bags in my etsy shop,  they’re only £5 ($8) and look how cool they are!

And everyone knows dinosaurs love to go shopping :)

take care

nx

Picking up the brush again

October 25, 2010

I have a new painting to show off, and no it’s not a little sketch or a glorified doodle it’s an actual painting which took me a good week (on and off) to finish!

To be honest, I’d love to blab for ages and ages about what it represents and how it has a deep philosophical meaning but the truth is I just wanted to paint and this is what came out.

Beforehand I was flicking through some of my old books and found a doodle of a robot sitting at a bar and I thought to myself ‘I’d really like to paint that’ so I went ahead just for fun of painting something.

Having that said, it might actually be a sneak preview of some of the stuff that’ll be going into the next exhibition :p

nx

Finding Inspiration:5 tips from me to you

August 23, 2010

Hello there!

Today I’d like to talk about inspiration and where it can come from.

As a creative, I continuously run into walls and blocks where my mind just gets stuck and won’t work, but as someone who depends on their creativity to generate an income I have no choice but to do my best to overcome them.

So I’ve made a short list, with details, of some of my methods of sparking imagination, I hope this’ll be useful not just for artists but for other creatives too.

1.Getting outside the box


We all have our comfort zones, we all know what we’re good at and what we’re not good at but it’s when we take a little jump out of these zones that we can sometimes find other things we’re good at.

I don’t necessarily mean try totally different things, I think it’s more important to experiment with different approaches to what you’re already doing, for example In an artistic context it’s good to try or mix mediums you wouldn’t usually use, subjects you’ve never studied before and colours you wouldn’t normally think of using.

A little trick I sometimes try is drawing something with my left hand, which gives a little wake up call to right side of my brain which often goes into auto pilot after a while.

2. Research the competition


It’s a well known rule of life that there’s always going to be someone better than you, doing what you want to do just that little bit better. Of course this isn’t a bad thing, it’s good to know the competition and it also can be inspiring whilst giving you a good sense of direction.

This is something I quite often do, be it buying magazines and books, keeping tabs on my favourite artists, checking blogs or even just googling ‘robot painting’ to see Eric Joyner pop up and place a firm boot to my back side.

3. Carry a sketchbook/note taking

Some of our best ideas are forgotten about, this was what my last exhibition was solely based on.

Keeping a sketchbook, pad or note taking device is essential for creatives because lets face it, do you remember every idea you had today?

Even if you are 100% sure that you’ll remember a certain idea by the time you get home or wake up the next day make sure you take note anyways. sometimes when I’m having a block I’ll look into old sketchbooks and find great ideas that I’d totally forgotten about, after a while they turn into little idea banks!

On another note I always get ideas just as I’m falling asleep so keep a pad and pencil next to my bed just incase, although most of the time I wake up to find random babbling.

4. Go for a walk
Sounds simple enough? personally most of my blocks occur in the house, getting out and getting a bit of air and space to think is sometimes all you need, that said it also pays to not whap in the headphones and listen to your head for a while instead of drowning it out.

5.  Write and reflect

If like me, your work is inspired by life and its events this can be a really helpful practice. Basically it involves writing loosely about anything, your day, you’re weekend, you’re relationship with someone, (it doesn’t have to be incredibly important) and in most cases you’ll come across something you’ve forgotten about that’s worth making something of.

It can sometimes even be as simple as having a little reminisce of past events until something pops.

Well Thats all I have to offer, I hope you enjoyed my little tips and hope that one or two comes in handy one day.

If you have any of your own please let me know!

nx

Running on Empty

August 22, 2010

Robots,my favourite vehicles of expression.

As you can maybe guess I’ve been feeling a bit run down recently, mainly because I’ve been out and about so much and it’s starting to take a toll on my sleeping pattern and work ethic, im getting back to normal though I just need a good nights sleep and that’ll be me!

In other news, I’ve updated my shop, I’ll be sticking up a lot more stuff once my new prints arrive, which im quite excited about.

take care!

nx

New In Town

July 1, 2010

Hello again! It’s that time again for another insight into the amazing life of a mental artist, This week I’d just like to show off another painting, this one was actually a commission, and like the best kind of commissions, I was given complete freedom (although other times jobs with strict guidelines can have interesting results) and so I had a flick through some of my sketchbooks and found a little idea I jotted down some time ago.

Basically, as I often do, I pondered into the life of a robot, this time a giant robot. Now, a lot of the time in sci-fi films robots and monsters find themselves in big cities (always new york city for some reason,place must be a dump now). Anyways I got to thinking what if I was a big robot in that situation,would I go ballistic and start tearing the place up? probably not, I’d probably have a seat, or try to find a giant robot or lizard pal to hang out with.

And that my friends is the kind of thinking behind most of my pieces!

hope you like it!

nx

A thought for today

May 12, 2010

Do you think robots would like music? or even understand it? I was thinking this earlier, also today, as I put  my shopping through the self service checkout I had a think about the aspects of robots in our society getting closer and closer.

Maybe in about 10 years or so I’ll be able to have a robot companion to help me about, do the shopping, walk herman and basically be my personal assistant, that would be amazing!

Anyways thats my nonsense for the day.

take care!

nx


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