20 02 2009

In order to keep myself focussed when deisgning – I’ve made some meed/theme boards that I think sum up the sort of visual style I’m going after:









GD Symposium: Russell Cobb Head of the AOI

19 02 2009

Russell Cobb


Russell Works alone, keeps many sketchbooks – Observation Ideas diaries memories stories. The backbone of what he does.

In the 80’s his school had no computer.

Sketchbook is a window to the persons raw creative ability etc.

Uses his sketchbooks daily.  “from one month to the next you’ll loose over 90% of your ideas.” so there is good reason to document them.

Observation is very very important.  Spent time going round the tube sketching people. An obsession with observation.

Always working away at things that interest him.

Helps to quickly visualise something. The ability to be a thinker, to have ideas. Obviously style finish etc is important , but the ideas underneth the veneer is important.

10,00 spreads of sketcbooks. :/ in 1994.

There is no logic it just pours out of life, observation.

Remain inquisitive – Stay curious.

Even writing can be so important, capturing raw thoughts.

Self Promotion

  • Don’t just slip into the marketplace.  “Create your own market”
  • Send out a postcard that is what you likeo do. Do the things that inspire you.
  • produced about 36 cards (collect and keep idea)
  • won the aoi gold award for self promotion 4 times.

Personal work

Keep working wth themes that inspire you, or even just hold your interest.

Published work

Book covers, billboards, making boring themes into good work. What people see, that is out there can lead to more commisions.



forming a group of illustrators – have a group “brand” and a group portfolio. Self critique each other.

GD Symposium: Mainframe

19 02 2009

Fraser Davidson

Used to study at NTU. Did motion Graphics throug BA.

After graduating, joined mainframe. Do a lot of tv titles TV promos /branding/mobile/viral/ 20ish people there. has show reels.

Furniture job “established and sons”, free reign to interpret the briefs.

Design BG and own work connected to this.

TV promo’s are their bread and butter.

How to promote work.  > youtube etc.
start something viralish.
Get people involved.

“The alternative Rugby League”


TWOTS revisions

26 01 2009

Incase the earlier posts hadn’t given it away, the victorian era theme has been dropped in favour of world war 2 London, during the height of the blitz. 

This setting opens up more opportunities to tie the character to the world more successfully;

– The Pigeon King is now a soldier of ww1 retired through injury. To do his bit for the war effort, he trains carrier/homing pigeons for the British Army

– Although a “hermit” through choice he is typically patriotic and loves his country. 

This gives the character more humanity, and a motive to progress. It also makes the keeping of pigeons more relevant and important to the world of the story, and justifies their use as “soldiers”

The Behemoth Video’s

26 01 2009

Here are a load of videos of Behemoth artist Dan Paladin Constructing level designs. It’s not of too much use right now, but come the ma phase it’s going to be a good resource, so I’m, sticking up this ink for future reference.

Also, Dan Paladin’s blog

Dastardly and Muttley in Their Flying Machines

26 01 2009

Intro video from the old Hanna-Barbera Productions cartoon “Dastardly and Muttley In Their Flying Machines”  (not “catch the pigeon” as the youtube user suggests, although it is a common misconception)


The show is rich in wartime visual styles (albeit WW1 era stuff). It’s a modern take on the clothing and machines from that era. Everyone seems to be wearing a flight cap and/or googles too, even the pigeon;


Army Pigeons

26 01 2009

This article contains a lot of information about Pigeons in the war. The “Dickin Medal” is particularly interesting.

“During the D-Day invasion of World War II, many soldiers were sent with a pigeon beneath their coats. This was a period of radio silence, so the use of pigeons for relaying messages was optimal. The pigeons were able to send back information on German gun positions on the Normandy beaches. Thirty-two pigeons were awarded the prestigious Dickin medal, Britiain’s highest award for animal valor. Recipients included a bird named “G.I. Joe,” who flew 20 miles in 20 minutes with a message that stopped U.S. planes from bombing an Italian town that was occupied by British forces.”

Giving medals to animals for bravery seems really odd. But it’s actually REALLY important, it shows that the animals were treat as individuals, friends even. This makes it a lot easier to add character and life to them.


Here’s  another link, this time to the BBC about pigeons and what we as a country actually owe to them. This particular quote actually highlights how important they were in saving lives during WW2.;

“So important was their contribution, ferrying vital messages to troops and secret agents alike, Hitler ordered all Britain-bound birds to be fired upon. “

A lot of this research makes you wonder why people hate them so much. Perhaps people just HATE to share their habitat. It’s easy to say they leave droppings everywhere – but I’d take a bit of pigeon poop over all the crap they eat off our streets for us still lingering around.