Surfing the Sea

Since 1995

Flash Fiction: The Replacements? — Jan 30, 2017

Flash Fiction: The Replacements?

Dartmouth and Jollimore were taking a good break from their daily teaching duties out in the staff room, making cups of coffee and tea respectively. They sat down beside each other on the big black sofa at the western end of the room, much to Dartmouth’s chagrin.

Just as he was supping the first sip of his freshly-brewed white latte, a somewhat concerned thought crossed Dartmouth’s ever-paranoid mind. “Jollimore,” he began, “you know those two teachers? The ones who are twin brothers?”

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New Characters: Rockingham and Boulderwood —

New Characters: Rockingham and Boulderwood

Two new characters have joined the Secondary School by the Sea teacher roster! (Well, not really. They’ve always sort of been there. If you read the Secondary School by the Sea wiki article I linked to just now, it’ll make a little bit of sense.)

Rockingham Hemlock and Boulderwood Wenlock are a pair of teachers at Jenhamville High, just like their more well-known peers Dartmouth McKinnon-Graham and Jollimore Ferrison. Unlike Dartmouth and Jollimore, however, Rockingham and Boulderwood are a little older, both being 33 years old. Why are they both 33? Because, also unlike Dartmouth and Jollimore, they’re twin brothers!

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Rockingham Hemlock

Rockingham is the first-born twin brother. He wears a medium-grey suit with colour-coordinated trousers, a white collared shirt underneath with a white-and-silver striped tie, and a pair of black laced shoes.

boulderwoodcharacterportrait
Boulderwood Wenlock

Boulderwood is the second-born twin brother. He wears a dark grey suit with a white-and-silver striped tie, a pair of black laced shoes, and carries around a suitcase, just like the first-born twin brother Rockingham.

Utah and Puerto Rico (2009) — Jan 29, 2017

Utah and Puerto Rico (2009)

utahpuertoricoposter

After a little detour for the past couple of exhibitions, let’s get back on track to American Boys – or rather, its spin-off, The States Show.

Back in the State Boys Jelly Babies exhibition, a mysterious ‘new’ character appeared at the very end. (I put ‘new’ in quotes as it isn’t really new now, being eight years old.) This ‘new’ character, Puerto Rico, would later on himself become the star of a movie, All the Magic of Puerto Rico.

In this (planned) movie, the State Boys discover that a potential 51st state might be joining their 50-strong roster. It is then that Puerto Rico comes to them, like an angel. Thinking that he has some kind of magical prowess, the State Boys dog him at every step (or flap of his wings) of the way, wondering why he’s come to the city of America and why he sees the State Boys as his ‘chosen ones’.

(Spoiler: Puerto Rico declines becoming the 51st state, but he gives a message that he’ll think about it some time in the future.)

Since Utah was my favourite State Boy back in the day, I decided to draw him alongside the star of the show in this promotional movie poster. There are literal stars beside Utah and above Puerto Rico, as well as in the movie logo, but I only drew those in as a way to fill in blank space. Also, four logos on one page seems a bit excessive… (This is partly why I no longer draw logos on my artworks, instead choosing to neatly sign them off with my signature and the date of creation, as is the tradition with artists.)

I also drew other promotional artworks for the movie, but they haven’t been scanned in yet, so they’ll be included in here as a gallery when I do have them scanned in.

Burns Night 2017 — Jan 25, 2017

Burns Night 2017

It’s Burns Night again! Here’s a mini-gallery of some of my artworks celebrating Scottish brotherhood across the seas.

Auld Lang Syne!

The Londoners: The 1st Generation (2009) — Jan 22, 2017

The Londoners: The 1st Generation (2009)

londonersgen1

As mentioned in the previous exhibition, the American Boys series wasn’t the only series of mine which began in 2009. During the first few months of that year, some other new characters came in to join my ever-growing roster.

With the first being the Alphabet Gang, the second were the Londoners. This series was a sort of spin-off of the Britain Boys series, but instead of focusing on the whole of the British Isles as Britain Boys did (mostly England), The Londoners focused solely on the capital city. Even Leyton makes a reappearance, albeit as an only child instead of having a brother in Stanmore, and her mother being Leytonstone (see what I did there?) instead of London. As the city of London is home to hundreds of districts, all with their own distinctive characteristics, this provided a perfect opportunity to create personifications of them all.

Acting on this, I set out on creating each character for the new Londoners series. So here’s the first generation! (See an explanation of what I mean by ‘generation’ here.)

londonersgen1
The Londoners 1st Generation
  • Enfield

    A skateboarder and the protagonist of The Londoners. He frequents his local skate park with his twin brother Barnet, pulling off all kinds of amazing tricks such as grinding and backflips. He can launch himself from the top of a ramp to great heights. His bedroom is decorated with pin-up posters of famous skateboarders and stacks of skateboarding magazines.

  • Barnet

    Enfield’s twin brother. He, too, can also launch himself to fantastic heights from the tops of ramps, and astronauts say they can see him floating about in space. Thinking that his skateboard is magical, he often points it at other skateboarders to ‘rewind’ them so he can see a great rick they’ve pulled off again and again. He once performed a ‘twister’ which was spectacular enough to receive press attention and an award win.

  • Oakwood

    A young teenager who is confined to a wheelchair. Incapable of speech, he tends to dribble all over his clothing, flap his hands wildly and drink too much liquids, resulting in frequent wetting. He is cared for by his father Southgate.

  • Southgate

    Oakwood’s father and carer. He helps with keeping his son clean and dry and feeding him on a mixture of skimmed milk powder blended with water, passed through a tube. If Oakwood gets too excited or distressed, he will calm him down by stroking him and calling him by a range of endearing terms. He is a member of his local disabled people’s action and advocate group, receiving their newsletter on a monthly basis.

  • Palmers Green

    A 17-year-old girl. She has a boyfriend named Wood Green, and she visits the park or the shopping centre every day to wait for him until he comes. She is obsessed with make-up, always trying out different colours of lipstick, nail polish and eyeliner to ready herself for her upcoming date. She tends to blush a lot, even at the most mildly embarrassing thing.

  • Wood Green

    Palmers Green’s boyfriend. A year older than his girlfriend, he often goes out with her to do things such as go shopping and play at the leisure centre together. If someone interrupts their kissing or general affection-showing, he will get angry at the offender. He likes to watch romance films at the cinema, where he laughs out loud at the film while Palmers Green cries hysterically.

  • Tottenham

    A very popular keyboard player. He wakes up with new ideas for songs every morning, rushing over to his keyboard as soon as possible. He occasionally embarks upon citywide tours, and people can be seen listening to his music on their iPods. He is widely revered as a ‘star’ of keyboarding.

Unfortunately, today only two Londoners artworks survive; these were some of the leftovers of the incident I describe here. All the others were lost to history forever, and faint memories are all that remain of them. The other Londoners artwork which survived the incident hasn’t yet been scanned in, but it’ll be exhibited once I get it up.

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