Birotech – “Strange Cargo”

It's a while since I've inflicted a new piece of birotech on you, dear reader. This latest drawing took me an hour, using the cheapest, nastiest ballpoint pen I could find, and appears to show some kind of strange containment apparatus disgorging an even stranger item of cargo. I've no idea what that thing with … Continue reading Birotech – “Strange Cargo”

Birotech – “Ear Wax Picker”

The earliest models of humanoid robot were so desperately primitive that they were unable to pick out their own ear wax. Hence this retrofitted device, which did the job for them. When I started drawing this latest piece of Birotech, I imagined it was some kind of futuristic hyperdrive. Then, halfway through, I tweeted a questions asking people to … Continue reading Birotech – “Ear Wax Picker”

Revisiting Cinefex (Almost) Illustrated

In their original form, my Revisiting Cinefex articles - on the first 40 issues of the classic visual effects magazine - were just plain text, with no images except for the cover of the issue under discussion. Once I'd concluded my retrospective odyssey, I broke the articles into headed sections (one for each movie) and set myself the task of … Continue reading Revisiting Cinefex (Almost) Illustrated

Birotech – “Limb”

Here's another of my Birotech doodles. Why "Birotech"? Because I draw them with a Bic biro. It's called "Limb" for no other reason than that it looks like some kind of robot arm. Maybe. The truth is I've no idea what it is, any more than I knew what my previous drawing in this series … Continue reading Birotech – “Limb”

The Picture

The Picture has been hanging on my wall for many, many years. I drew it when I was seventeen, egged on by my good friend Andy Wicks. One of these days I'll prise it out of its frame, slap it on a big flatbed scanner and make myself a decent digital copy. Until then, you'll have to … Continue reading The Picture

Birotech – “Station”

I used to draw for pleasure all the time. Now I rarely have the urge. However, today the mood took me and I spent a happy hour sketching this strange futuristic structure (I have old sketch books filled with stuff like this). I've called it Station but really I've no idea what the heck it is. … Continue reading Birotech – “Station”

Cover reveal – Talus and the Frozen King

They say a picture speaks a thousand words. This one says, 'Look at the stunning cover design for my new novel Talus and the Frozen King, coming from Solaris Books in March 2014!' Okay. Not quite a thousand words. I'm not bothered. For a change, I'm going to stop yakking on and let the picture … Continue reading Cover reveal – Talus and the Frozen King

In which I draw on a wall

I don't generally talk about my day job here (yes, like most writers, I do have a day job). In my other life as a graphic designer I mostly do layouts for ads and brochures, a bit of photo retouching and illustration, all pretty routine stuff. Just occasionally, however, I get to do something that's … Continue reading In which I draw on a wall

Moebius and McQuarrie

You can tell the books I love the most because they're falling apart. This week, I've taken a moment to browse once more through two of the tattiest volumes I own: The Book of Alien and The Art of The Empire Strikes Back. My reason for doing so is a sad one, because this week … Continue reading Moebius and McQuarrie

Is creativity a black art?

'Where do you get your ideas?' It's the question every writer dreads. The truthful answer is usually, 'I don't know.' I prefer to take it one step further. You see, I don't want to know. I've often wondered if it's possible to teach creativity. The longer I live, the more convinced I am that it … Continue reading Is creativity a black art?