I just got back from a trip to South Africa! Yeah, it was pretty great! Especially sweetened by the UK having terrible cold and snow while I was in the sun…
However, this isn’t a travelog blog, so instead of tales about safaris and speedboats, you get to read about the suitcase I took with me(!)
This grey fella is the Tripp suitcase that my parents take on holidays. I borrow it from them for my own hols, seeing as I go away way less than they do. It’s utterly indistinct, so to identify it as ours we apply stickers to it, tie coloured fabric around the handles, that sort of thing.
A few weeks before the big trip, Mum brought the tired-looking thing over to my place, saying that I could tart it up a bit.
I chose a Springbok for my design. It’s South Africa’s national animal, the symbol of their national Rugby Union team, and the symbol of the Friendships Association: They helped us visit my expat family over many years. I’d layer it over a green background, like below.
February the first was Hourly Comic Day 2018. Another trip around the sun, another day to make a comic for every hour awake.
I point out every year that mine aren’t done in real-time: That’s just silly, even on a weekend, and this was a workday! While people on Twitter were apologising for posting theirs “late” on February 4th, here was I… this time, my “hourly” comics took 8-10 days. I can offer you a range of excuses, from a couple of freelance project deadlines, overtime at work, and even having a cold. But here we are: It’s good practice, I can look back at previous years.
As this involves taking notes, then drawing onto paper, inking, scanning, arranging and uploading, maybe next year i’ll try going purely digital… I bought a stylus to use on my touchscreen laptop at Xmas.
Click below to read this year’s comic!
CARL MITCHELL’S HOURLY COMIC DAY 2018
- The Springbok is a symbol of the Friendship Associations (and the South African Rubgy team). I’m off on to visit family in South Africa at the end of the month!
- I’ve nothing against Owain the Weatherman, but he’s no Lisa Gallagher. Well, to his husband, I guess he is.
- I actually own a top hat and tails. That’s a story for another time.
- We bought a new smaller and simpler 4G Hub from EE that afternoon. It arrived in less than 24 hours.
- The main topics at the retirement do were ‘criminal capers’ and ‘vintage cars’.
- Bruno Mars’ Finesse is the 90s resurgent.
- Did you know that Outlook bases its webcode off Microsoft Word? It needs so many compatability workarounds, it should really be retired / rebuilt.
You live in the UK, you know what a pantomime is! A family comedy theatre performance, with audience participation, usually based on folk tales, with local / lower level celebrities in some parts. “Panto” for short. They show up during the Christmas season; Aladdin is currently running in Halifax, while Bradford’s Alhambra is going with Peter Pan.
Now that I’ve opened with ‘Panto season coincides with the Christmas season’, I’ll start the double bill with Pantoland’s Got Talent… which was performed in Spring.
Act One: Pantoland’s Got Talent
Pantoland’s Got Talent was a completely original play, the writing debut for a member of Shipley Little Theatre. It featured all the denizens of Pantoland putting on a talent show.
For an Illustrator / vector advocate, quite a lot of this was made in Photoshop for the effects… then layered back in to Illustrator.
The Stag Do was done and dusted. Now, with a few weeks to go until the nuptials, I could focus on building and buying various decorations and gifts for the wedding itself.
I’ve posted before about my “trilogy” of handmade greeting cards, which the couples received for their respective weddings. Above is the card I made for the newest newlyweds…
A pen drawing coloured in with watercolour paints, based on Potter Puppet Pals, writing (with a quick quotes quill) and… sysadmin stuff (a phone, displaying a monitor, displaying a skull and crossbones). Also featuring their cat in the middle.
I drew it out in pencil on A5 paper, then (to make things more complicated than necessary) scanned it in and moved elements around in Photoshop. I also roughly digitally coloured it.
Then I printed the lines out again at A6 size, with higher contrast, and traced it onto my watercolour postcards via the light box.
Part 1 was about the largest (and most fun) props from the Stag Do I hosted last month.
Now onto part 2, which focuses on the smaller props and accessories I made for the par-tay…
A golden hat
The Groom needed to stand out from the rest of us plebs. Sashes are for hens, and this was not the kind of group to all go out in full costume. I ruled out the ‘Helmet of Justice’ from Knightmare because, well, you can’t see where you’re going. That would get old fast.
Being a Discworld fan (and he’s a bit of one himself), I plummed for a Moist Von Lipwig inspired hat… with a bit of local hero Fred Dibnah mixed in.
The base hat was a flat cap from Primark. Four reasons led to this choice:
- You don’t want to repaint and cut holes into something pricy, or riun a costly item and need to buy another!
- It came in One Size (fits all), so no chance of a cap that’s too small.
- The groom had tried it on briefly on our suit shopping trip.
- The hats in the costume shop were made of an uncomfortable, hard plastic.