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


Drawing on life

Drawing on life ad

I just spotted this in The Guardian’s Guide magazine – Drawing on life is a free festival to launch The Big Draw 2008. I’d love to take my son Joe, but we’re celebrating his birthday this weekend, so we won’t be able to fit in a trip to London. Blast!

Check out the home page of the The Campaign for Drawing site – it’s got a fantastic banner where you can watch the hands of Posy Simmonds, Quentin Blake, Gerald Scarfe and Sir Richard MacCormac draw a picture, right in front of your very eyes!

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On Sunday mornings, after dropping off my son Joe at Karate, I usually take a stroll around the lake at the UEA, then grab a quick coffee at the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Art.

Designed by Sir Norman Foster and housing the art collection of Robert and Lisa Sainsbury, I made my first visit there as an Art Student in 1979 and I have always loved going back. Once upon a time, I thought that all buildings would end up looking like this, especially after visiting the Pompidou Centre in Paris and seeing the Lloyd’s building in London. Even now, 30-odd years after it was built, it still doesn’t look dated.

I put a little set of pics I took on Sunday onto flickr.

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What’s her name?

Original line-up of Roxy Music

The first single I ever bought was “Street Life” by Roxy Music. Last night I spent a brilliant hour watching “More Than This… The Roxy Music Story” on BBC iPlayer. Roxy Music are one of my favourite bands of all time and watching this programme turned me back into the excitable 14-year-old who spent ages in his bedroom drawing comics and listening to “For Your Pleasure (The Second Roxy Music Album)”. Wonderful stuff.

Thanks to Mike for the heads up.

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Chairman of the (pin) Board

Steve K’s pin board

Ever since Art School, I’ve always had a pin board full of bits and pieces to inspire me at work, whether freelancing at home or working as an employee. Sometimes, depending on the situation, this hasn’t even been a proper board, just a few scraps blu-tacked to the wall.

My present pin board (pictured above) is in my home studio/study and is a hangover from my last freelancing-from-home stint prior to joining the Studio at Virgin Money. I’ve tried to keep it as tidy as possible – I used to have a bad habit of pinning new bits over the old bits, so after a few months it just looked like a vertical Tracey Emin installation, threating to bring the wall down on top of me.

Joe K’s pin board

When we recently redecorated my son Joe’s bedroom, I decided to keep the tradition going and put a pin board up in front of his new desk, to inspire him when he’s drawing (and to console him when he’s doing his homework). His board is neater than mine, but it’s only been up a week. I’m looking forward to see what he pins up.

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Rex Crowle

Reading the latest issue of Computer Arts, I came across the work of Rex Crowle, an extremely talented illustrator/animator. I was especially impressed by “Violence” (see above), created as an exercise to teach himself After Effects.

He’s got a fantastic website too.

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Don’t talk, Kiss

Cartoon from Talk, Don't Kiss by Enzo Apicella

I have books. Many, many books. So many, that from time to time I have to have book culls.

Unfortunately, once I’ve picked the books off the shelf that I’ve decided to banish, they end up sitting in a pile on the floor of my study. And there they wait, alongside the other books that aren’t going anywhere, somewhat defeating the object of the whole exercise.

My wife, who has no such attachment to the printed word, actually made my study a little tidier by dispatching the latest pile to a secondhand bookshop/charity shop/bonfire of her choice. Before she did, she pulled out ‘Don’t Talk, Kiss’ by Enzo Apicella, saying “This looks significant – I thought you might want to keep it”. She wasn’t wrong.

Back in the days when I was half-designer/half-cartoonist, Enzo Apicella was one of my heroes. I loved his drawings and his wit. I also loved that fact that he created the corporate identity/interior design of the Pizza Express chain. And I really loved the neon Pizza Express logo in the window that used his handwriting as the typeface. I used to fantasise about him sitting inside a Pizza Express, possibly eating an American Hot, while effortlessly drawing another fabulous cartoon. I think I imagined that’s how cartoonists worked.

I’m glad I was re-acquainted with this book, a book that I had completely forgotten I owned. Mmm… I think it’s time for another book cull…

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