Gimme Gimme Shark Treatment

The inside cover illustration for my 2010 remix album of the same name.

I’m particularly proud of a couple of the creatures I made in this piece – the tattooed man with the machine hat (representing me perhaps, though I’m not that comprehensively tattooed), and the hand with tentacles on the shoreline.

This fits the theme quite well since “giving it the shark treatment” was my term for the remixing of my friends songs. I definitely take a collage-like approach to making music and that was very apparent to me when I was remixing other people’s songs rather than starting from scratch – the elements of their songs became like the images I cut out to build my collages with.

The album can be downloaded from Bandcamp for free:


The sequel to “My Friend’s Electric”.

In many ways I prefer this to the earlier piece – the symmetry is not as perfect as I would like it but the contrast between foreground and background is stronger and there’s something delightful about a smiling robot holding a balloon!

Unlike other cute pieces, for some reason it doesn’t bother me that this one has no subversive or lewd elements.

The Great Kiwi Summer

Or “Postcards From The New Zealand Psyche”.

My tribute to summers at the beach, beer and barbecues and warm blue water.

This piece is packed with personal references and memories – the blue ocean of Coromandel (we used to spend summer holidays camping at ), fishing with Dad, cold Fanta and Frosty Boy ice creams on a hot day, Grandad’s home movies…..

From a technical viewpoint this one is kinda crude and basic compared to what I created later but it has so much personal meaning and rose-tinted nostalgia packed into it that it will always be a favourite.

The Nuclear Family

This family may have a had a little too much radiation!

Just in time for Christmas we have a very old piece featuring a family of lovable weirdos.

Not much to say about this really, it is what it is.

Down at the bottom left corner is a cameo from my lovely wife in her 90s goth outfit.

Travel Is Dangerous

But it’s also thrilling and wondrous and an essential part of broadening one’s mind.

The title of this piece is borrowed from a song by Mogwai; a song filled with beauty and excitement and more than a little menace and trepidation. The song tells the story of a Russian submarine crew who die a long way from their loved ones, based on .

Needless to say it’s a dark song about a dark event, but Mogwai’s gift is that they can take darkness like this and juxtapose it with beauty and delicacy to create something transcendent.

That juxtaposition could also describe my experience of traveling alone to the US in 2013: it was tremendous and life-changing but also a bit scary – turbulence over the vast empty Pacific when you know you’re still 4 hours from land ain’t no fun – and I was consciously pushing my fat ass out of my comfort zone every step of the way. That’s a good thing to do but it can be hard work for a hermitty fellow like myself who’d be just as happy pottering away in his studio at home. It was a powerful experience mentoring my son through the same thing when our family traveled to the US a few months ago.

I think that the thrill of excitement and the clammy-handed tension of danger are simply two points along the same scale and traveling really illustrates that. My fear in the plane was just a sour version of the thrill I felt as I saw Portland for the first time, an intense anticipation that came close to rivaling the last few moments before I saw my son for the very first time. Like I said, a life-changing experience.

I’m the main character in this piece, a rare indulgence. As famous traveler Dick Whittington – with the head of a slightly timid rabbit – I’m wearing the top hat of my eyeball logo man and I’m accompanied by my faithful cat aka my muse. I’m preparing to embrace the weird and wonderful experiences and creatures in front of me. It’s perhaps a bit flowery to describe Americans as “weird and wonderful creatures” but you get the point. I did embrace some of them and it was mostly wonderful.

The fact that the pterodactyl bears a striking resemblance to the woman who assisted me at the gun range in Portland, and managed to offend both my friend Liz and I is purely coincidental.

The Path – Part 5: Enlightenment

‘The Path’ is a quasi-mystical series of collages exploring the journey from Ignorance and Chaos to Wisdom and Enlightenment. It’s also an exercise in capitalising words to make them seem more important 😉

Part 5: Enlightenment. Freed by a divine Hand, the Enlightened Mind soars above self-imposed prisons of Restriction and Baseness; free to ride the currents of Time and Wonder.