BED BUGS! Crikey.

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‘”What’s all this barking about?” Karen asked. “You’re quite safe but you need to understand that dogs sleep here and humans sleep upstairs. Now go back to sleep and I’ll see you in the morning.” She picked us both up and planted a kiss on the top of our heads, then put us back to bed saying, “Goodnight, don’t let the bed bugs bite”.
BED BUGS! Crikey. “Will they bite us Megan?”
“Oh dear, you’re scared of your own shadow Dylan. It’s just something humans say. They think it’s funny…”‘

This is my first illustration in ‘Where’s Dylan? The Story of an Anxious Dog’ by Karen Sanderson. The pups have been welcomed to their new home and face their first night in unfamiliar surroundings. Needless to say Dylan’s a little anxious! For news of the book, additional information and adorable photos of our heroes, please visit Dylan’s webpage šŸ™‚

 

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‘Where’s Dylan?’

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Recently finished work on this excitable pup of a project. ‘Where’s Dylan?’ The story of an anxious dog’ by Karen Sanderson is a wonderful read that follows Dylan on a fear-facing adventure that children will love and relate to, giving insight into their pet’s behaviours and offering guidance on some of life’s obstacles.
From blurb:
“Dylan has been an anxious dog from the moment he was born. He worries about everything including: finding a kind owner, bath time, the vet andĀ staying in boarding kennels. But nothing is as terrifying as the Jet Monster.He believes that the Jet Monster is trying to kill him and he must run away from home to avoid possible injury. In his panic to escape, he destroys his home and garden, causing distress to his humans and sister, Megan. He finally decides, for everyone’s sake, to leave for good and take up a wandering life away from the source of his terror. Will this be the answer to his problem? – OR – Can he find a way to face up to his fear once and for all?”

This book is available to buy! Please contact the author on Dylan’s webpage for a copy and to see some adorable pictures of Dylan himself and of his (very bossy!) sister Megan.

 

Harry Potter-inspired tattoo

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Tattoo design for my friend and work colleague who is Harry Potter mad :). Original request was ‘a snowy owl with the deathly hallows symbol’, but this soon flourished to incorporate lilies and a Felix Felicis bottle. My friend loved the design and is taking it to see her tattooist very soon, I’m really looking forward to seeing the result!

Farewell to the bulletproof idea…

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‘Did you think to kill me? There’s no flesh and blood within this cloak to kill. There is only an IDEA. Ideas are BULLETPROOF. Farewell.’ – V, ‘V for Vendetta’ by Alan Moore and David Lloyd.

Being a huge fan of ‘1984’ by George Orwell, ‘V for Vendetta’ has been a graphic novel on my reading list for a long time. And now I’m kicking myself for not reading it sooner. Written in the 1980s , V for Vendetta portrays a 1990s Britain where fascism rules andĀ a corrupt government controls the population through the media and Big Brother-style observation. Enter V, a character more ‘ideal’ than ‘man’, whose aim is to destroy society in the name of freedom and fate.

As with 1984, V for Vendetta highlights the complacency that society so easily slips into. Wrongs are forgotten, corruption expected and ignored all for the pursuit of the easier path. Unlike 1984 however, V for Vendetta has a glimmer of hope in the final pages of a future that can be built brighter and better with the participation of all. 1984 just takes that hope and crushes it, laughing mercilessly at the reader in the process.

And I’m afraid I have to side with the reformed Winston Smith on this one, V. We may have had a voice once, but I believe Fate has constricted our thoughts and throats too much. They were clever, V, and we’ve become complacent, content to be distracted by the fadsĀ and whimsy of theĀ ‘in-crowd’, the celebrities that dance for our curiosity while the shackles slowly tighten. And those of us that can feel it can only observe. Yes, a ripple grows in size butĀ it takes far less than a tsunami to mask it.

We love you, V.

 

Depressing thoughts over, this piece was done in fineliners in tribute to the fantastic book V for Vendetta.

Illustration for ‘Trash Into Cash’

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‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’ stories – ‘Trash Into Cash’. Becky Tipper’s tale sees the traditional ‘Rumpelstiltskin’ story being played out in today’s metropolis – the old miller may now be a scrap merchant, the king may be a sharp, clean-cut businessman and the threads of gold may now be made out of green paper – but the heroine’s desperation and love for her child are as strong as ever.

‘Trash Into Cash’ features alongside 16 other short stories in ‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’, published by Mother’s Milk Books. Copies are available from their website.

Illustration for ‘Little Lost Soul’

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‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’ stories – ‘Little Lost Soul’. Marija Smits’ tale follows Dr. Yelena Belova, a psychologist and Direktor at the Chernobyl Robotics Facility, as she helps a young woman being physically abused in the facility. What starts as a story of compassion soon becomes a tale of suspicion and doubt that forces the reader to question what it actually means to be human.

Read more from Marija Smits at her online blog.Ā ‘Little Lost Soul’ sits alongside 16 other short stories in ‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’, published by Mother’s Milk Books. Copies are available on their website.

Illustration for ‘Fox Fires’

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‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’ stories – ‘Fox Fires’.Ā Jane Wright’s nighttime tale is beautifully eerie and one of my personal favourites from this collection of short stories. A tale of a young girl’s overwhelming grief, the ambiance of a cold winter in the far North creates a ‘silence’ that emphasises the emotions so much more strongly, from the sadness of loss to the glimmer of light that is hope.

‘Fox Fires’ sits alongside 16 other short stories in ‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’, published by Mother’s Milk Books. Copies are available from their website.

Illustration for ‘How Women Came to Love Mirrors’

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The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2′ stories – ‘How Women Came to Love Mirrors’ by Hannah Malhotra.
Mirrors – objects of vanity employed by women to preen and pamper and achieve a beauty with which to address the world. Used by women to check their appearance hasn’t faltered should society be paying attention.
Required by women to prove to themselves that they are still visible.
Mirrors – needed by women to convince themselves that the feeling of invisibility is just imagination.

‘How Women Came to Love Mirrors’ sits alongside 16 other short stories in ‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’, published by Mother’s Milk Books. Copies are available from their online store.

Illustration for ‘Paths of Desire’

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‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’ stories – ‘Paths of Desire’. Finola Scott’s fairytale tells the story of another young selkie, ripped from her ocean home to become a wife to a human male as the folklore dictates. He promises to do anything to make her happy but as she fails to bear him a child over the following months, the pressures of trying to conceive begin to take their toll…

‘Paths of Desire’ sits alongside 16 other short fairytale-inspired stories in ‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’ published by Mother’s Milk Books. Copies are available from their online store.

Illustration for ‘The Worm’

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‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’ stories – ‘The Worm’. Sarah Hindmarsh’s tale retells the story of the Lambton Worm from English Folklore, an eel-like creature unwittingly caught by Lord John Lambton whilst fishing. Initially in fear of the monster, Lord John begins to feel a strange affection for the beast, but as the creature grows and becomes more vicious in its Master’s absence, the people of Lambton begin to suffer the consequences of John’s actions.

Sarah Hindmarsh is the author of the ‘Animal Adventures’ series and her first book ‘The Mouse Who Howled at the Moon’ was shortlisted for the SpaSpa independent book awards. ‘The Worm’ appears alongside 16 other short stories in ‘The Forgotten and the Fantastical 2’ published by Mother’s Milk Books. Copies are available from their online store.