Wednesday, 15 August 2012

formal resiliance #1

i drew this for the mat.zine submissions reminder for the theme resilience.

the idea behind the piece [and the cover piece, formal resilience #2] is the resilience of an architectural from, i.e the shape of buildings. the form that interests me is the pitched roof. its relationship to resilience is that the way we treat and use the form has had to adapt as time has progressed to justify its relevance/appropriateness. for example, black houses in scotland had pitched roofs to drain the water to the exterior edges of the house [and probably for other reasons too]. today, we have the technology so our houses don't require pitched roofs to shed water, yet the form is still exists. it's a strong symbol and seems to be engrained in, at least the west's, imagination as 'house'.

also, i like drawing pitched roofs...

Thursday, 22 December 2011

play wood

over the past month i have been busying myself with our [neu architects] installation for architecture foundation's windows on willesden project.

the project speaks volumes for the promotion of minimal interventions and the speed in which they are implemented.

if you're in or around london, then pop along to see all 25 of the shops!

here are a selection of pictures but we have a lot more here

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

The Self-Tormentor

Tonight, there is an encounter between two unlikely characters. Or rather,
two characters who do not like each other much. There was a family feud
some time ago. Though it was not quite so dramatic, more a slow gathering
of absence that quietly stacked up. So high, it formed a barrier between
Taka and Poisha. An occasion missed here or there because of a lack of
anticipation and then at one point, it just tipped. The history became
arbitrary. Enough distance for some abstract resentment to be convincing.

Taka and Poisha are not geographically distant. They live on the same
street in fact – at either end of Whitechapel Road. The exact point where
each lives defines exactly who they are. Taka is right in the thick of it.
He cocoons himself within the comfort of a tight knit community so that he
might be everyone’s friend. The tip of Brick Lane, leading to a strip of
professional welcomes. Whereas Poisha is out on a limb, consciously so, for
just enough space to be allowed the opportunity to be introspective. Giving
little away with tunnel vision towards the family. Whitechapel where it
starts to change its mind.

Taka and Poisha use the street as a tool to remain a world apart. But a
larger force binds them together, tugging at the invisible wires that
pull the traffic through. While Taka gazes upwards to minarets among the
silk weavers, Poisha curls up beneath the cross. A call for Taka to join
like-minded others at the meeting place. One curious offspring of Poisha
occasionally peers over to this exotic character, immersed in the centre of

The disparate pair is tied by more than this road, for they are relatives.
This would be difficult to spot of course, their personalities are
laughably in opposition. Years spent in pursuit of splaying paths, burying
the shared blood and naive experiences beyond view. Lives were once piled
atop one and other, now they tilt at either end of a see-saw.

Taka and Poisha happen to be money exchange shops. Seemingly banal office
types - desks, chairs, filing cabinets, wall calendars - yet filled with
tales of adventures, and part of a topography that stretches to the other
side of the world. Trade is embedded in the tarmac here, which unfolds
and wraps itself around the tea leaves of north-eastern Bangladesh. The
exchange of money runs along a streak of blue paint between skyscrapers,
which gushes blue-brown through the streets of Dhaka. Travelling on two
wheels from the City of Mosques to The City mosque, and back again.

A blur of moving blue lights interrupts the quiet pause just after the
small hours, just before early workers. All awake at a tower composed of
blue rectangles in the middle of the road, where either end is brought
together. Taka is ill, a devastating tear in the routine of normality. The
reason is not a lifetime of self-indulgence or reckless attitude to health.
Instead, it is something that was there all along, squeezing ever-tightly.

Taka needs a piece of strength from another body to survive. It must be
someone with an ingrained bond; Poisha knows it must be him. He does
not feel the family connection anymore, he has carved himself a sense
of belonging where he is happy; he still knows it must be him. Through
bleary eyes, he sees with great clarity a character that lives on the same
street. And for this reason alone, the interests of Taka are not foreign to
Poisha’s own concern.

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

the unlimited edition

esme and I contributed to this lovely publication: the unlimited edition.
it was curated by we made that [as part of 'highstreet2012'] and explores the hidden delights and idiosyncrasies of this historic street.
our contribution was a short story and illustration bassed on observations of two businesses on whitechapel high street.
i have a few copies it you would like one, alternatively you could wander down the high street and pick up a copy at the weekend... maybe get inspiration for the next issue.

the cover

the spread

the page

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

the tomato plant

like ah gee a fuck aboot yir bike



just put the grip tape on, it's pinker than it looks

Thursday, 28 July 2011

some recent illustrations

Friday, 22 July 2011

some recent sketches

jonny marks

a face

a dog

a face

a bike

Thursday, 21 July 2011


submitted this to 'broo'

a wee publication put together by david tayor for the elephant house.

this is how it looks the now...

in true east london hipster fashion, i'm making this into a fixie.
what a knob-end.

stay tuned for its progress.
[i took this picture in january and only just got round to fixing it up]

a piece of shit writing i wrote for matzine

The Shifting Void

His shift started at 0000hrs.

The temperature of the lab was stifling and had produced condensation across the observation window, obscuring his view out. Lowering the thermostat and brewing some coffee, he prepared his mind for the 12-hour shift ahead. From the window he could see the previous scientist to occupy the room return to his quarters.

Sipping the black coffee, he let his gaze and mind drift for a moment through the observation window. Looking back at him: a view he never tires of, yet its composition minimal.

Clusters of dark, slender columns rise, descend and disappear into the infinite distance. A forest of steel without roots, branches or canopy despite efforts to climb to the stars and plummet to the earth below. At moments light breaks through the vast blackness, its source unknown, its legitimacy unknown. The columns fill the void with a blankness that he could gaze into indefinitely and let his imagination fill the space. His mind's potential his only limitation.

The columns shift with time, to create space for new inhabitants and new minds. Each column the same, each life predetermined. A deep cacophony filled the air as steel pushes, grinds and stretches to its tolerance: the sound of space compressing. Volumes shift ominously into their new positions. They move slowly and precariously.

People travel great distances to sign their minds away and inhabit these columns. All these bodies, all these minds and lives, wasting away for a dream, a fake dream that he has provided for them.

As he gazed out the viewing window he saw lab 269 moving to its next subjects. The lab, which binds the columns together like a clenched fist climbs endlessly higher and higher never to descend. Changing shifts, an employee approaches the lab and enters as another leaves with no exchange of gestures. Stepping out onto the suspended steel walkways, which weave in and out of the forest of columns, the employee returns to the accommodation quarter. Giving up their reality for a dream.

The lab jolts awake, his previous subjects sink through the bottom of the lab as new ones descend into position. The glazed windows that frame the faces of the patients become translucent with condensation. Approaching one of the pods, he puts the palm of his hand on the glass. The coldness hurts as small drips of water trickle down his fingers and fall to the floor. Wiping the widow he stares at his own reflection, asleep in his fictitious life.

i aint pit anything on my blog for ages....

meta architecture film

Untitled from sean mcalister on Vimeo.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010


my submission to mat-zine no. 5

thought i would put them on my blog so you can see them a wee bit bigger.

check it out yeah

left fears

caird hall oblivia

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


I got a typewriter from Esme for my birthday and started playing about on it last night.

I'm wanting to produce some type of drawing with it and these are some tests to see how the machine works and reacts to my insanely vigourous key bashing. I think these look like some kind of landscape...

Several things about the process interested me: It is difficult to compose a drawing while only having a small proportion of the paper on view, using your memory to try to fill in something that is hidden away around the other side of the roller...If i go tits with the same key over and over again on the same spot, the print goes through to the other side of the paper, a kind of reverse drawing... to do anything takes fucking though.

Thursday, 7 October 2010

stag pish

learning illustrator...

Saturday, 18 September 2010

birthday card for esme

a pigeon

gifts for esme

for esme's birthday i made these...

bought a matching pair of old side tables with some interesting detailing carved into the legs and table top surround. painted them a colour that would give the original designer a heart attack. stuck some coasters down though leaving some of the gold detailing that appears on the leather top on show [my original plan was to cover the whole top with coasters then grout between them but i decided against that idea when i saw these tables]....

a simple idea. however, many of my grand plans never seem to materialise, i'm glad this did.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

black mill

a collaboration with sean mcalister...

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

french bulldog

Thursday, 15 July 2010

urban concussion 1+2

the first two publications of a small zine i produced with text from friends jonny marks and david taylor and myself [links to blogs on the right]

red square

a wee drawing of a duck and some robins

bottom right is my favorite

self portraits done at various paces.

i did these about 6 months ago, trying to develop a technique for drawing that creates a illustration that looks care free. i enjoy illustration that on first impressions looks easy to produce but when i try to replicate the style it is usually harder than i thought.

very fast
medium [whatever that means]