More One Pagers

Here’s my latest batch of cheapo sketchpad one page comics: i'm sorry

This (above) is called “I’m Sorry”, and it’s 72 tiny panels drawn directly in pen onto the page (still A4, mind). Below, a cameo from Christopher Wren in this one, which was pencil then pen, then a bit of photoshop colouring (which by the way is a pain in the arse on brownish paper).determination

And finally, a comic detailing my experiences with job interviews (the monster is an unsubtle surrogate for me, obvs):interview

Many thanks for your time, I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely,

Steven Tidlsurotom


Recently, I have been producing one-page comics in my lovely cheapo sketchpad:


I just start drawing something and then try and dig myself out of the hole I quickly get into. For example, with this one, I started drawing this crying giant thing that i’ve drawn a few times, and the Giant Giant Panda which came out of my other sketchbook (which is even rougher than this one), with a basic idea that they would fight.



I drew directly in Brushpen so was committed to all the lines & errors i’d be making, but so be it. In Panel 3, having written “Let us do this thing!”, i still had room in the speech bubble, so I wrote the word ‘Poom’ which made me laugh, so I decided to make the rest of the strip about that. The drawings go well off-model, but for such a stupid strip I couldn’t be bothered to pencil it out and get everything looking exact. You get the idea, and hopefully the laugh, and this is the point of these really, just get an idea down and share it, without it taking ages to produce. I drew all the panels first too, so i was going to struggle to stretch the idea out to 9 panels, so the word Poom seemed the ideal endpoint.


Next was this one (above), and i started with the idea of this little potato man suspended in liquid, but struggled a bit with a punchline, but eventually it presented itself. I coloured it with coloured pencils again, but it looked a bit crap so the sandy colour was added in photoshop.


This one didnt really come together until panel 5, where i drew the big monster, but it didnt really look like it flowed with the previous panel, so i tried drawing another one and was going to split the panel up, but then it became obvious that there was more than one monster jumping, which luckily led to the last panel. The brushpen was a bit too restrictive with this one though, so i decided to change it up for the next one…


So changing the rules a little bit (my rules, so who cares?), I used a 5B pencil, and gave myself the luxury of a bit of rubbing out if strictly necessary. I quite liked the pencil, and again the punchline could have gone a few different ways, but I think this is a nice little wrap up without explaining too much.


So mixing it up again, i tried a bit of coloured pencil, and again I used characters I had drawn but not done anything with before and decided to see where it goes. I started off with a bit of a downtrodden Fargo/ American Beauty character in mind, hence the bit of narration, and from there it wrote itself….

I’m enjoying knocking these out, they only take about half an hour to do and they’re nicely self-contained but get me thinking about utilising the panels on a page and being creative within the parameters i’ve set myself. Maybe one day I will draw the better ones of these out if I’m really bored, but I think they work for what they are, and spending hours on them wouldn’t necessarily enhance the small enjoyment that they might bring.

Try it yourself, and I’ll see you next time….


Selfie/ Newzround


What’s up BP lovers? Long time no blog, but I’ve been getting on with a few bits and pieces. Firstly, here’s my first proper self portrait, commissioned by Bob Turner as part of his comic artists self portraits series . I’m pretty pleased with it, the idea was to represent how I draw, which is basically to hunch over any given surface with a pile of drawings and reference material. This was a one-hour drawing too, so it came together pretty quickly (you too can commission a one-hour drawing from me hereed).

Elsewhere, I did this quick strip called Sandwiches which was apropos of nothing, done mainly because I enjoyed drawing on my new rough sketchpad (Boyes, 49p). It was drawn in brushpen straight onto the page real quick like, which is why it’s a bit rough and the text is a bit wonky, but you get the idea…




Also elsewhere, Ethel Sparrowhawk 3 is coming together slowly but surely, I’m a few pages into it and we’re just finishing the broader story outline which will feature death and dinosaurs as well as awkwardness, betrayal and dinosaurs, so it should be a rollercoaster of fun (also dinosaurs). Here’s a rough pic as a little preview:


There’s also exciting news about Comely Girls afoot, the long overdue follow up to Manly Boys, my collaboration with Gareth Brookes about the brutality of childhood.

And if you’re desperate for BP updates, please follow my tumblr as there’s more updates and randoms on there.

BP Bigg Review of 2013

So, here’s another BP tradition that i feel compelled to do for some reason, the annual stock take of everything comic related i’ve been up to (perhaps i should actually do a stock take? nah.). 2013 was quite a year, I got married, twerked with Robin Thicke at the VMAs, killed Margaret Thatcher, won Wimbledon etc etc but you know about all that dear reader, and i sense that you are far more interested in the intricacies of my comic-making biz. Well here goes…

As I started off the year back working for the man, my extra-curricular time was going to be restricted so I had to manage my time and try pick stuff that was actually going to be worthwhile. I also had a wedding to plan (my own) which took up bear time, so for the first few months of the year I concentrated on getting the story for Untitled Ape’s Epic Adventure sorted. At this point in time it’s all written and planned and ready to go, I just need a year to draw and colour it, and while i’m happy that it is going to be pretty, pretty good when it’s finished, it’s not exactly the most commercial thing i could be doing with my time at the moment. To those couple of people who like UAEA, don’t worry, it’s not dead and buried, just on the back burner for now and I’ll still be plugging away behind the scenes when i get the chance (ha ha!). Anyway, here’s a sketch from near the end that i’ve not published before…


Around this time where i wasn’t really creating much to show off, i put a few things on Issuu; my super limited edition Banal Pig’s Royal Assortment, the part complete Space Wars Colouring Book, and some old jokes and stories, so why not have a look at them?

I’ve had a steady flow of one-hour commissions throughout the year too, like these: draculacommissionsm
disclaimer- this one (above) took a couple of hours.
I always enjoy doing these, so please feel free to get in touch if you have a particular drawing you’d like to commish.

So my next thing, after getting married in May was a big strip/ poster which i utilised twice, firstly as a strip in OFFLife #5 and then expanded and colour-tweaked for a poster for ELCAF (still available to buy -Ed).
ELCAF was one of only two conventions I did this year, as I vowed to do less small press stuff and thus haven’t had that much to flog, but I enjoyed it and did pretty well- it’s definitely the right size and type of con that i like, and i think it definitely benefits from choosing the exhibitors to make sure the quality is high. It’s also good to have an excuse to go down south and visit my bro Gareth Van Brookes, who had a pretty good year himself with the publication of his first full-length book, The Black Project. I would say it was great even if it wasn’t, but it definitely is, and is a unique and compelling masterwork. Read it today!

Back to the narrative, the next thing on the horizon was a comic for my sister’s wedding, which I was pretty pleased with despite the pretty tight timescale, and it went down a treat (so I say so myself). scollcomicfull

When I got back from that wedding I had a couple of exciting emails waiting for me. The first was from the editor of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles comic, asking if i want to have a go at writing a script for them, so I said yes, and the second one was from Jamie Smart, asking if i wanted to do something for his upcoming Moose Kid Comics project, and i said yes to that too.

So that was the next couple of months sorted, it was interesting to just write a script for someone else to draw, and i’ve enjoyed watching the Turtles cartoon for “research”, it’s got some good gags in there. My first story is going to be in issue 10 apparently, but there’s not much info online that i can find- i think it should be out in February. The Moose Kid Comics thing should be coming out soon, so I won’t say too much about that, but here’s a couple of panels i previewed before:


This is getting a bit long, so I’ll wrap it up. I also did Thought Bubble, my second and last con of the year, taking over from Andy Waugh on the Sunday only, and did better than i did over the whole weekend a couple of years ago. I still don’t really like doing cons over 2 days, and i think there are far too many exhibitors which could be cut down with a bit of curatorial input to make it a bit tighter and less sprawling. Otherwise, all good though, nice to have this as a big event on the calendar.

Into 2014, Ethel Sparrowhawk 3 is on the cards, more of which soon…

Thanks again to all my patrons and to everyone who has visited here, liked me on twitter or tumblr or said something nice. Have a good one yourself.