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I found him in the garage on a Sunday afternoon.


...He was lying there in the darkness behind the tea chests, in the dust and dirt. It was as if he'd been there forever. He was filthy and pale and dried out and I thought he was dead. I couldn't have been more wrong. I'd soon begin to see the truth about him, that there'd never been another creature like him in the world.


...Mina came in beside us. She crouched, stared at his face as dry and pale as plaster, at the dead bluebottles and cobwebs, at the spiders and beetles that scuttled across him. She took the torch from me, She shone it on his thin body in the dark suit, on the long legs stretched out on the floor, on the swollen hands that rested at his side.


...She touched his hands. She lifted his filthy cuff and touched his scrawny twisted wrists.


...Through narrowed veiny eyes he looked out through the door. Mina and I gazed at his face, so pale and plaster dry. His skin was cracked and crazed. His black hair was a tangle of knots. Dust, cobwebs, bluebottles, spiders, beetles, clung to him and fell from him.


We saw for the first time that he wasn't old.

He seemed like a young man.


Mina whispered it:

'You're beautiful!'


(Extracts from Skellig by David Almond)


This one was inspired by the extraordinary children's book Skellig by David Almond - about a little boy who discovers a strange, dust-covered, arthritis-riddled, man (or angel?) taking shelter in the crumbling garage in the garden of his new house.... its a beautiful story - and has been a long-time favourite of mine, so I thought I'd have a bash at drawing the character of Skellig - the creature in the garage.


I've taken some artistic liberties - in the book he's too weak to lift himself off the ground, and so sits propped up against the wall, not on a splintered crate - and doesn't reveal his wings until later in the story, when Michael - the little boy - and his friend Mina - come to rescue him. But this way I could play more with the lines and creases in his clothes...




Although the story of Skellig has a most beautiful and radiant happy ending, this picture was still a sobering one to work on... so while drawing I cheered myself by...


...dreaming of taking long road trips with Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros...


...and being enchanted by kinetic typography... (I never knew such a thing existed) – loooook here - someone's made a great Dapper Dan piece...


Marvellous :-)


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Uploaded on May 7, 2009