Tag Archives: drawings

The Diary Of Joe Meek…

25 Jun

Hello you!

I meant to blog about this quite a while ago, but this year got consumed with some rather exciting projects which I’ll be able to tell you all about very soon.

But first…

When I was a youngster I drew comics all the time, but as I’ve got older my love for drawing has sort of been side-lined into an “add-on-pack” to my love of writing and film-making. I’ve never really believed in myself, or my abilities, as an illustrator / cartoonist / artist / whatever.

However I’ve still occasionally entertained ideas of working on a comic book – based on some of my unseen writing – and have made tentative steps here and there at putting something together, usually falling apart after the first page or two.

At the beginning of this year a friend of mine told me that the independent publisher Good Comics were looking for submissions to an anthology called ‘Dead Singers Society’, the third volume of which they were due to publish in February.

So, I decided to give it a go and put together a one-page strip based on a deceased music artist that I was interested in.

I knew that recently departed musicians such as David Bowie and Prince would be prime pickings, and I felt somewhat intimidated tackling someone like Ian Dury – already depicted brilliantly in the film Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll – so I chose to dive back into my creative writing past.

Andy Serkis as Ian Dury in Sex And Drugs And Rock And Roll

I studied English Literature & Creative Writing at Aberystwyth University (2003 to 2006), and one assignment involved writing a diary for a someone either living, dead, fiction or non-fiction. I chose the innovative record producer – and occasional singer – Joe Meek.

Joe Meek

As someone who loves making music myself – at the time this was a very private process, and the results were usually horrible – I felt a certain kinship towards Joe, especially in his desire to create bigger, stranger, more experimental sounds and often doing so in the most imaginative and low-tech ways.

His story grows even more fascinating, and tragic, as you begin to delve into his troubled personal life, his paranoia, his sexuality and the circumstances surrounding him that ultimately ended in murder and suicide.

I’d written a number of diary entries imagining his innermost thoughts, skipping across time, that tracked Joe from his early creative explosions, across his frustrations with the mainstream music industry, towards unexpected success with the smash hit single Telstar, and finally into his descent into darkness.

Adapting this into a one page comic was going to be quite a challenge, as I still wanted to give a sense to the reader of that journey.

So, I grabbed a piece of paper, sketched out four panels repeated over four lines, and went through my fictitious diary to find four incidents to fill each line.

I still felt like a bit of a pretender submitting my work to the folks at Good Comics, looking at the other issues the quality of the storytelling and artwork was so strong and individual that I couldn’t see my own work fitting in alongside it.

Surprisingly, a few weeks after sending my comic off I had a reply – my email had accidentally wound up in their Junk folder! – and, even more surprisingly, it was to say that my comic was going to be a part of their anthology.

It was really flattering and very exciting to see my comic in amongst so many brilliant artists in the ‘zine. It was doubly exciting to pop into Gosh! comics in Soho and see the ‘zine containing my work on their shelves.

Collage of images from Dead Singers Society Volume 3

Ultimately though, I’ll be honest with you, I still felt like a pretender, someone who had managed to sneak their way in despite not having the proper credentials. As with many things, it did make me resolve to try and work that bit harder on my drawings – hence the Valentine’s Day cards – and to try and be a bit more proactive with creative projects – hence the busy-ness.

You can pick up a copy of ‘Dead Singers Society Vol. 3’ here, as well as loads of other great work from Good Comics.

All the best,

Owain

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Original Art For Sale…

20 Jul

Hello there,
To exercise my drawing muscles (they’re in the hands) every now and then I’ve been making watercolour and ink sketches based on the films that I’ve been watching, they look a bit like this…

Cop Car Children of Men The Sound Of Music

If you like that sort of thing then I’ve also set up an Etsy shop in order for people to buy my art (always the original drawings, no prints and reproductions here):

https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/OwainsGubbins?ref=hdr_shop_menu

All the best,

Owain x