Thursday, January 26, 2006

I can do it too, with Kandoo

Back back back! But keeping it brief due to profound hangover scenario. God bless Burns’ Night.

Anyway, I popped these up on quite recently, and they’ve been getting some nice feedback from artists whose work I really respect, so that’s nice. On the downside, I did come in to work today wearing two different kinds of shoe. In my defence a) the bedroom is dark, b) I’m really hungover (see above) and c) I’m profoundly stupid, yer honour. I could tell I was wearing two different kinds of shoe, because one of them is very noisy (in a slightly feminine, high-heelly sort of way) while the other one is not. So this is the noise I was making on the way down the corridor:






Very silly.
Judge Dredd (click to enlarge):

...and Judge MacBayne, from the now-defunct (I believe) Calhab Justice strip. Hey, it's a Burns' Night special! (click to etc.)

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

It's alive!

Lord. Doctor Sam Beckett is currently pretending to be mentally handicapped in the TV show Quantum Leap, and honestly it’s getting me down. “Interesting” side-note: the end of the last episode of QL showed him leaping in and getting called “retarded” by his older brother. Now, from my bourgeois, liberal, post millennium standpoint, I was assuming that the brother was just being 1960s ignorant. But no, Sam Beckett, obviously distressed and confused, looks his mentally-handicapped reflection in the eye and says “I’m retarded?” You’re supposed to be from the post-Clinton, PC future Sam, show some fucking respect for the leapee.

God has there ever been a tackier, clammier more offensively pseudo-liberal piece of shit than Quantum Leap? I’m not going to get into it now because by Christ I think I may explode, but suffice to say: it stinks. It’s dimwitted, humourless, faux-pally Christian propaganda of the worst kind, and the fact that I used to be such a huge, huge fan fills me with horror (though to my credit, I was just waiting for Doctor Who to come back on the television - and anything remotely time travel-related would have to do. See also Crime Traveller).

On a mostly unrelated point, this is Frankenstein’s monster. I’ve just realised I love drawing Frankenstein’s monster, and I’m really, really digging Grant Morrison’s take on DC’s take on the character (although issue 2 was a beautifully made mess - appropriate I guess). Anyway, I don’t wanna bore you all with comics stuff, so here’s a drawing:

Sunday, January 22, 2006


First of all, a thanks is due to Adam Christie from the justly renowned (and Times-promoted!) for linking me from his far superior site. Cheers Adam! I've returned the favour on the right there.

Second of all, some pics. Unusually for me, I did these straight into photoshop. By necessity, they're very crude as I come to grips with the techniques, but I like their cleanness and colour. There may be more of this sort of thing, if I ever get my arse into gear.

And a character design from way back, during my concept artist days. This little guy was an assistant to the hero of a platform game that, alas, never got off the ground. His name's Charlie, if I remember rightly.

And this is the main character in his guise as a mighty stone creature, back from the days when I was actually pretty good with photoshop (the whole thing was laid out, inked and coloured in PS.

OK, that was much, much duller than I'd expected. Never mind, I'm sure there'll be more scatology and stupidity next time.

I'm going now!

Thursday, January 19, 2006

My eyes! My eyes!

I like to think that when KISS sang the song "Crazy, Crazy, Crazy, Crazy Nights” they were referring not to evenings of mind-blowing Bacchanalian excess, but to the sort of night I enjoyed last night: the kind of night where the worrying about a single, tiny detail of a drawing keeps you awake till the wee small hours, where even the tiniest bump, creak, rustle and scratch in the night jerks you from your fitful, dissatisfying doze, and where it feels like the assembled hordes of all your darkest fears and desires threaten to wash over you like a great big tide of... I dunno. Calcium, or something. Anyway, I feel like ass, which is the long and the short of it – and to make matters worse, I didn’t even deploy my twilight nutter-imaginings in the service of doing anything creative. No, I just lay there and screwed my eyes up and hoped for the best.*

Sleep is – and you’ll have to bear with me here – a dirty little tease: it flirts with you, tempting you with long yawns and big stretches and practically demanding you go to bed RIGHT NOW. Then when you finally acquiesce, and manage to tear yourself away from late night showings of Seinfeld or whatever else is keeping you up, and actually go to bed... it won’t come. Damn you sleep, you filthy whore! If I ever get my hands on you, I’m gonna pull a Macbeth, just see if I don’t!**

So annoyed/beat am I, I’m not going to even apologise for the tedious, self-indulgent invective above. I think KISS would want me to stick to my guns.

Anyway: drawings by gum. This dude was created by my pal Niall for a comic book which he's writing and I'm drawing. Dirty slack bastard that I am, I've done not nearly enough for this in the time we've been working on it (about a year), but I always enjoy dipping back in. The story's about lots of things, but it's nominally about this guy, who's a dwarf gun-for-hire who never uses a gun (click to enlarge).

Dude, I promise I'll get back into this soon.

Also, there's this, which is for another project I'm working on, this time for my pal Debbie. She's developing a lovely, wintry children's epic, of which the character below is the heroine (click to etc.).

I think this looks pretty keen: worked up in pencil then tweaked in photoshop to tighten the lines. There's a sepia-tint version knocking around somewhere, and if I'm feeling particularly bountiful then by God I'll post it here. You lucky, lucky people.

OK, that's it. Gwan, get outta here!

*Just like with my ex-wife. Ho ho.

**Boring classical allusion. Please ignore.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Always bet on black

Just a bit of "fun" this: 70s DC token comic character Black Lightning, in the style of an 80s video release of a 70s blaxploitation flick.

I'm particularly chuffed with the GTA-ness of the whole thing, and of the blindingly accurate mid-80s 18 certificate (sans bbfc gubbins in the background).

Monday, January 16, 2006

Put your ape face on

As sort of promised, some ape studies for my King Kong/Superman piece.

Feedback welcome, natch.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Silver Age Batman says "hi".


What I particularly like about this picture is the way the colours are *ever so slightly* wonky. Gives it that proper "old-comics" feel.

That's my damn excuse anyway.

Blog blog bloggity blog

So this is being written on my fab new laptop. Hoo-bleeding-ray, and about bloody time. At this precise moment in time, Molly Ringwald and the rest of the cast of Sixteen Candles are sounding particularly muffled in that knackered early 1980s VHS way. See, this is why I hate blogs: how self-indulgent and boring is that? I’m watching Sixteen Candles? Wow Danny Zucco: tell me more.

The problem with blogs - and this will doubtless have been covered extensively elsewhere - is that they offer a platform to anyone to say anything. Problem is - as I’m discovering - not everyone has something to say. So you end up doing what I’m doing right now: tedious meta-commentary on, like, how boring blogs are, man.

Wait, some early eighties tits have just appeared on TV.

…okay, they’re gone.

So, apes. I had this idea while watching Kong the other night: what if - instead of Anne Darrow being captured by Kong, it was intrepid reporter Lois Lane? And what if - instead of biplanes knocking that damn dirty ape off the building, it was the Metropolis Marvel, Superman? That would be pretty cool, right? I hope so, because I’m planning on drawing that quite soon. Might be nice, with a bit of a sepia tint and a big ol’ Daily Planet banner across the top. Anyway, stay tuned my amorphous, silent, invisible chums.

Wait, eighties Joan Cusack in a neck-brace. Mmmm…

Anyway, what about the end of Lost? Yeah, let’s pretend I’m talking to someone. Enjoyable it was - good drama it was not. So they’re out in the water and then, what? Some sea paedos just happen to drop by? Yeah, you’ve got to watch out for those sea paedos (or as they’re sometimes known, “sea-dos”. Or “mari-nonces”. Or… um… ) - they’ll nab you when you least expect it. Stupid, manipulative plot contrivance. But strangely disquieting in its way, and you know… great cliffhanger. Bastards.


I have some art on the website for Walkers, the Scottish Short Bread people. Point your eyes at this, man (copy and paste)!

See that map? I did that. I'm not super, super pleased with the way it worked out (the colours are a little muddy and the background is *still* too pink despite my working away at it for what felt like a year - kind of looks like it was printed on human skin...), but it's nice to see it finally up there.


Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Great ape - on ice!

King Kong.

In a word: excellent.

In more words: confident, intelligent film-making, from a director with a sure grip on narrative and character. A near-perfect blend of action heroics and incisive human commentary. Particular highlights: Brodie’s angsty, liberal writer being confined to a monkey’s cage in the hold of the ship (what a witty, satirical image), Black’s bullish director running after Ann not to save her, but *just to see what’s happening* and that long, sweeping shot of Kong falling from the ESB while biplanes drift silently above. But the standout moment is the exchange between Jamie Bell’s Jimmy and the ship’s skipper about Heart of Darkness. “It’s not an adventure story is it?” – this, moments before Black’s arrogance leads our heroes into a trap and the tone of the film shifts into full-on sturm und drang territory. As an attempt at imbuing Black’s character with some psychological depth this doesn’t quite come off, but it’s a clever, funny way to expose the story’s themes (death, doomed love, hubris) to the audience, and a chilling indicator of where the plot’s going next. Who expected this kind of semiotic wit in a blockbuster about a giant ape? Not me.

Also, I'm pretty sure there aren't many directors who could make the image of a big ape skidding around on the ice at once romantic and ludicrous. Go, Peter Jackson!

Warning, there may be big ape pictures soon. I'm in that kind of place

Monday, January 09, 2006

And the winner is...

In a staggering feat of imaginative thought, I've decided to call my blog dan mcdaid. I am awesome.

A stark warning

I should warn you (and by "you" I mean the great, amorphous, possibly-only-actually-existing-in-my-head "you") that there will be endless changes to this here thing while I come to grips with the AWESOME TECHNOLOGY. So it might not be called sketchie forever (because, um, it seems to have been done before, Google says so) and I might monkey around with the template till I get something I feel reasonably comfortable with. Do you care? I don't know.

Alas, I'm more or less stuck with sketchydan as my blogspot name thing (I say alas, because one of the other sketchydans on this here the Internet is some sort of peddler of smut, or so it seems from the cache - I'm too scared to check the actual site because it looks like it's probably TOO HOT FOR TV or whatever). I could change it I guess, but that would mean losing all the lovely precious things that are already here. And I'm not ready for that. Not yet, darling.

Anyway. A picture for your eyes:

This is from my gangster-themed take on Macbeth. That's Banquo and son fleeing from the madness of Macbeth's machinations. It's all about to go horribly wrong, but I haven't drawn that bit yet.

Yes, it's Batman

This was done in marker pen, and shows me going through a bit of a Bruce Timm/Darwyn Cooke phase.

Good day!

After some considerable deliberation (alright, five minutes on the loo this morning), I have decided to start my own blog. Hurrah. It'll primarily be sketchy odds and sods (hence the name), with some random thoughts and general foolishness thrown in if I'm feeling up to it. Expect a lot of vulgar facetiousness - and some crazy, wacky cartoons!