...being the blog of steve kirkendall egomaniac-about-town


Lardwatch #5 (going the right weigh)

Steve Kirkendall flattens bike as he sits on it
OK, so I’ve now grabbed hold of the sword of exercise to slay my fat frame of shame. I cycled to work Wednesday to Friday last week, I’m cycling today and I even cycled first thing (8am) Sunday Morning. I weighed myself this morning and… I’ve lost two pounds! Hooray!

OK, this lives firmly in the land of ‘Big Deal, Fatso’ but it’s a start. If I manage to keep the exercise going, people might start calling me ‘Steve the K’ again, instead of ‘Jabba the Hutt’.

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Fri-llustrator-day 11

Analogue vs. Digital Stockbroking illustration by Andy Martin

Yesterday I received some lovely promotional posters from Heart and it got me thinking about another favourite illustrator of mine, Andy Martin. Why’s that, I hear you ask? Well, years ago, I commissioned Andy to illustrate the cover of a magazine I was working on and just after he delivered the artwork, he invited me along to the newly-formed Heart launch party.

Millenium Calendar by illustration by Andy Martin

Andy Martin was among the first illustrators like John Hersey and J Otto Seibold to wholeheartedly (no pun intended) embrace the Mac and begin working digitally. He has since branched out into film making and one of his films, End of The Street, was nominated for an British Animation Award. Also in Andy Martin‘s Film section, check out the brilliant 3G ringtone movies produced for the Japanese mobile network, DMOVE.

And he has to have the coolest signature of any illustrator I can think of.

Illustrator Andy Martin’s signature

All images © 2009 Andy Martin.

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Lardwatch #4 (going the wrong weigh)

Steve Kirkendall as fat elelpant

So I stood on the scales yesterday and they said ‘AAARRGGGHHH!!!!’ before I did. I have gained THREE POUNDS and I’ve been good! It must’ve been the holiday indulgence finally showing up. Mind you, last nights fish and chips won’t have helped.

Now off for a power walk and a bit of a cry.

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Fri-llustrator-day – Ten!

Super Santa by John Martz

There was no Fri-llustrator-day last week folks, ’cos I was away for Easter. Anyways, it’s back and this week I’m featuring one of my favourite illustrators.

John Martz is a Toronto-based cartoonist/illustrator and is also the editor of one of my favourtite blogs, Drawn! which is a must-see if you have any interest whatsoever in illustration or cartoons (see link in ‘Groovy Gals And Geezers’ on right).

Ill Communication by John Martz (sketch and final illustration)

His own work ticks all the right boxes – fab drawings (check), fab colours (check), fab lettering (check) and fab website (check). His site features not only his finished pieces, but sketches, warm-up drawings and free fonts – there’s even a online store should you want to treat yourself.

'Grampire' warm-up sketch by John Martz

Check out the wonderful world of John Martz at robotjohnny.com. Lovely stuff!

Images © 2009 John Martz.

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Bitch-slapped by Incognito

Yesterday, after dropping off Joe’s guitar for repair, I slipped into Abstract Sprocket, Norwich’s best comics emporium. Glancing around the shelves, one particular cover just leapt out, grabbed me by the throat and barked “Buy me, motherliker!”

Incognito – cover issue one

Incognito is the new series by Eisner award winning creators Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips. I bought it on gut instinct because the cover of the first issue (above) was such a fantastic image. However, I read inside that this comic has been such a runaway success that the compelling cover I fell in love with is actually the SECOND printing, as the first run (with a different cover) sold out in seconds flat. My gut instinct proved right about this title, however – I love Film Noir, Raymond Chandler and complicated superheroes and Incognito is a brilliant mash-up of all three.

Incognito – panels from issue two (1)

Taking a hero who’s a baddie with a creative direction from pulp magazines, the result is a hard-boiled, cliché-free, amoral tale of a perveted kind of derring-do you don’t usually come across in comics. And there’s plenty of swearing too. There’s a quote on the back from Ain’t It Cool News which reads ‘…INCOGNITO bitch-slapped my senses and left me questioning the lines of morality, a pretty f**king spectacular feat in 22 pages.”

One thing, however – Is Dr. Lester supposed to look like evil Dr. Sivana from Captain (Shazam) Marvel?

Incognito – does Dr. Lester look like Dr. Sivana?

Here’s the first version of the cover (below).

Incognito cover (first print run)

I’m now going to check out Criminal, the multi-Eisner award winning series also by Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips.

All images © 2008-09 Basement Gang Inc.

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Lardwatch #3 (weigh out, man)

I’m back from a little Easter break at the Norfolk coast and I’ve just had my weekly weigh-in. It’s not good news. Unfortunately, I’ve gained the pound I lost last week. Mind you, considering the amount of food and drink I consumed while away, I’m surprised it wasn’t more – maybe all that walking about helped.

Here’s to a weight-less next week – watch this space (geddit?).

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Do Cineastes dream of Electric Sheep?

I first heard about Electric Sheep (the deviant view of cinema) via magculture and I remember thinking how cool it looked. We received a copy at the Virgin Money Studio thanks to Stack and I’ve just had a good read of it and I have to say, I enjoyed it thoroughly. It’s got great art direction by Emerald Mosely, who I think was, or still is, a Flash designer who worked alongside great web pioneers like Mike Slocombe of Urban75 fame.

Two panels from comic strip review of 'The Watchmen' from Electric Sheep magazine

In the latest issue (spring 09), Electric Sheep reviews The Watchmen with an absolutely superb comic strip by underground star Mark Stafford. Not only is it an astute review, it is also a great illustration of the versatility of the comics medium. It’s also a mark of how sophisticated and creative Electric Sheep is. Great work all round!

Oh, and Heidi, if you’re wondering where this issue is, I’ve taken it home. I’ll bring it back soon, promise!

Image © 2009 Electric Sheep/Mark Stafford.

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Apple Store comes to Norwich

Great news!!

Continuing the tradition of this blog breaking exclusive stories a week after they’ve happened, I can reveal that Norwich is to get it’s own Apple Store. And I heard the news from that well-known source of Apple gossip, my children’s hairdresser.

I’m now off to start queuing so I can be the first to get the Apple Store Norwich T-shirt and whatever other goodies I can get me sweaty mitts on.

I wonder what Norfolk resident and famous Apple fan Stephen Fry thinks of the news?

UPDATE 23/09/09: Apple Store Norwich opens 26/09/09!

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Lardwatch #2 (or the weigh to lose weight)

Cartoon of Steve K with his new one-pound-free fat frame

Yesterday was the weekly weigh-in and I can reveal that I have lost a staggering one pound and ten ounces – IN ONE WEEK!! WHOOOO! YEAH!! ALRIGHT!! (SOUND OF STUDIO AUDIENCE CLAPPING WIDELY).

I’d like to thank God, my parents, my wife, my children, Bella the dog, everyone who has been there for me (STARTS CRYING), the lady on the salad counter at Sainsbury’s, I’d like to thank salad itself, water too, (THAT’S ENOUGH THANK-YOU’S, THANK YOU – Ed)

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