Andy Sykes

Special Glue and Other Stories from Andy Sykes on Vimeo.

This is a sample of the work of one Andy Sykes who I've been trying to contact over the past month and a half with examples of my work (cof cof) so that I can be part of the Ayup animation group. But.. no such luck. I think by this point I should admit defeat and set about improving myself with a renewed vigor. Or get a job as a brickie.

EDIT: He just got in touch with me and he's interested in me being on the project so thats nice. Cheers Andy!

Work for tutorial

Ben X

So tonight to get out of the house from not doing much work, I went with some friends to see 'Ben X', a film by Nic Balthazar. It's Belgian which I felt helped the slight corny-ness of it's delivery a little easier to swallow; couldn't imagine a film in english that dealt so visually with game graphics mid-film to be so convincing. I don't know really, that point is a little hard to explain but I think I was more.. forgiving because I had to read subtitles.

The film overall is pretty emotional, gripping and .. almost more of an experience than a narrative-based piece of cinema.


The films protagonist is autistic and the film tries to visually portray what it is like to be under the control of this mental state by comparing it to the singular 'I am the only important person' mindset that a video game ladles upon its player.

Honestly I thought that would bother me but somehow it actually comes together and if you can tolerate the slow pace, it's a pretty moving way to spend 93 minutes of your time.

Good links! Easy research! Nuff said!

LCS :: The Illustration News Portal


Four good links, check them out. ALL THE TIME.

Buster Keaton must've had balls the size of oranges.

who ever said black and white films were boring?

london visit

Ok if this seems a bit hashy that's because I've basically torn it from Jess' blog who was smart enough to document our visit pretty much as soon as we returned from it and not almost 3 monthes later like me.

So I was in Birmingham visiting Jess in her shitty student house (I mean it was shitty for a student house. Yeah.) She says she's going to london on a trip with her course and I took this as an opportunity to see what the crack was in the big city and get to know some more cool doods.

Train gets cancelled, twice and we're jammed into tiny space on a train for about an hour and a half (?) but then it picks up when we arrive.

First stop, V&A,

Lots of handmade books, high quality shit, Paula Rego etc. Very inspiring.

Next, the Illustration cupboard,

I'm feeling lazy so here's what Jess thought:

Really nice little place with a huge amount of original work there. John Lawrence was up at the time...he does etching and its the most friggin intricate thing you've ever seen...amazing....beautiful...and really inspiring. There was alot of big names like Oliver Jeffers, Babette Cole, Shirley Hughes (Alfie!) and Raymond Briggs. But by far the highlight was seeing the work of Brian Wildsmith in the flesh...not even prints...actual original artwork. So unbelievable in flesh and you realise how little justice his books do to his work....Not that they are bad in print but they were so vibrant and fullof life in reality. I guess its inevitable that you lose some of the quality in print. It made me realise how important a consideration it is in books.

Ouch, bad grammar alert.

Then Jess' tutor (found here at EATMYDRAWING) took us around London sharpish and stumbled us into what is possibly the most awesome-est comic book shop evar around the leicester square area. I don't know the name so I suck balls but I'll do my best (well...) to find that out. It was basically a 2 floored cavern filled to the rafters with graphic delights which I hunger for again. I know it's rubbish, can't explain it much more than from an emotional standpoint; if someone could make an attempt to identify it from this palid excuse for a description I'd be very happy.

And... that was it I think.

Kids; next time you go somewhere, write down what happened ASAP FFS!

B'ham international comic show

I just got a ticket for this weekend to the Birmingham international comic show and I'm pretty excited about it. Honestly I'm very naive to most names and titles in the comic industry but I'm very into reading comics and graphic novels so I'm sure I will enojy the experience. I guess I'll have more to report when I get back but here's the link to the site for now.

Oh, JollyJack will be there, of and noteriety so I'll try to get his autograph or something and give him a good old chin wag. He says he'll be kicking about with these fellows.

This piece of JJ's art sums up what I'm expecting from the experience as a whole. I will take on both roles seen here when the time is right I think.

I've just been introduced to a blog which seems like intensive daily and relevant research for me so have a look!

lots of animation and drawings and such.

Gentlemen, get your geek on!

Yesterday me and Owen went to the pre-release tournament event for the latest set, Shards of Alara.

It has to be said that I'm not a HUUUUGE MTG fan; I enjoy playing the game casually from time to time but generally it's only these events that I attend because I find the weekly gigs to be inhabited largely by.. well.. obsessive recluse stereotypes. Plus, I tend to burn myself out pretty quickly on games or activites by playing them intensly for a few weeks.

So I wasn't really too fussed about going but did so to appease Owen. Walking there, getting a bit nervous at the thought of having to spend an intensive 6 hour session with sweaty stinky bastards. However, I ended up really really enjoying myself.

Sure, I got my ass handed to me in just about every game and the image above is a testament to that (1 point of damage in rounds..) but it was the experience of playing with the brilliant characters I opposed that really made the entry fee worth it. I ended up giving away some of the rare cards I'd pulled to some kids but that was more because I knew I wouldn't use them and thought it would brighten up their days a little more. Plus I made a couple of actual friends who exchanged numbers and everything! Yeah for social life!

Here are some of the cards that made my tournament an even more enjoyable experience.

Realm Razer. The two games that I won were due to his mana-droughting capabilities. Just get out what you need ASAP and then slap him down! Very fun.

Branching bolt also saw alot of use because it's so destructive for how cheap it is. And I drew two of them.

Finally, the pre-release card itself Ajani Vengeant. I couldn't use it but it's very pretty and kept me going through those tough slaughter-fests that were my games. Well, that and the chick with the huge boobs/low cut top combo.

Anyway thats enough of that nonsense, back to illustrating and such.

Work Experience

So this summer, I've passed alot of my time by pouring my efforts into helping local production company Masspro Productions with the filming and editing of various events. It's pretty small time stuff at the moment, weddings, birthdays, dance schools and so forth but the company is steadily improving its clientele base. 

For instance, next month we'll be shooting a documentary about ghosts (for festival entry, with my guidance!) and there are talks to bring about a new tv show with our help. As in, actual tv filming experience. And production of afformentioned tv filming experience. Wow. I can't go into.. well... ANY detail currently but I'll keep uptodate on what I'm allowed to release. As a teaser, it's related to something I've shown interest in in the past. 

Anyway, I know that this work experience isn't completely related to the paths of production and drawing like I'm trying to taper myself towards as a career but.. it's good experience all the same and I'm tired of missing opportunities. 

Here is a video of me in action! Watch me go! WooO!

EDIT: Apparantly blogger is up to its old tricks of being what we refer to in the business as a 'right gay bastard' so if you would be so kind as to follow this link, you'll get the serving of hummus I slaved over for you.

Also I've been taking on various live briefs around illustration so that I can see what it would be like cutting it as a freelancer. My experiences so far.. I will go into during the next post.