Friday, 11 August 2017

Some LSCC updates!

Just two weeks away from the Super Con and a lot has happened since my last update. The intent was to travel down with Russ Payne who would be sharing my table at the event and doing some Kirby related talks. However, two weeks ago he had a mild heart attack, was hospitalised and had a procedure to keep him alive. So he can't drive us to the con. He thinks he can but really, he can't. Russ is still coming to terms with the fact that he isn't 18 anymore. He'll get there. One solution for the future of our road trips is that I learn to drive. It may happen...I don't think I'll be any good at it, but I may need to. Not because of Russ but because my wife might end me soon if I don't.

So, still determined to go, we're looking at trains. What a pity that there are a lot of important train stations shut that weekend in London. Bank holiday weekend in August...let's shut some stations. Ideal! (I'm very close to boycotting British Rail after a particularly inept sequence of events on a journey from Liverpool today. The final straw was arriving late to Preston to be innundated with train officials asking to see my ticket every 4 steps, why?) I did consider using National Express to get to LSCC. The overnight bus on Thursday, we could sleep and arrive in time for the start I figured...but then I rcalled that I used their coaches regularly whilst at unversity and I know we'd set off at 10pm Thursday and arrive in London just as the con was finishing on Sunday. 

On a positive note, I returned from a week with friends in Italy today and I had a very pleasant flight experience with Blue Air. I questioned their existence when my wife booked the seats but, upon arriving at Liverpool airport, there they were! Better yet, the staff smiled and were helpful and chatty and there was even a free sandwich and drink on the short flights (that arrived early both ways as an added bonus!). A refreshing change from Ryanair (and, in this case, £800 cheaper too). 

I can't accept anymore commissions for LSCC. The pre-con list is closed!! I can accept commissions that I can do afterwards but not in time for the con itself. I've taken on many commissions (some I've managed to defer until Thoughtbubble, thankyou to those kind people!) but I still want to draw some more pieces to sell at the con! Been a very interesting mix of pieces this year, from cover recreations to Swamp Thing, Victorian art to Star Wars droids...

Here are some already finished sketchcovers that will be for sale at the con (and a Spider Gwen A3 one that was a commission). Mainly Batman ones but there are hopefully going to be plenty of other chracters to choose from too, I just had a jones to draw some Batman TV pieces. I'll have regular comic book sketches as well as the likeness ones, watercolour too (not the Copics with a colourwash, but true watercolours). I'll post those when they're done.

Friday, 23 June 2017

Prices update...and some more ramblings about blank sketchcover quality.


I'm being asked to draw more and more cover recreations on blank variants. After taking on some complicated ones I've arrived at the (obvious) realisation that they take a lot longer than regular sketchcovers (who'd have thought that?). So, I'm going to charge a basic rate of £75 for a cover recreation on a blank. Wraparound covers will be twice the price. Colour can be negotiated!
Anyone who is currently on my list for recreation blanks the original price still applies.


Well, I have to admit, I was in error. I've found a blank variant that's so bad that I can't actually draw on it. And it's published by DC. Adventures of Supergirl #3...the cover stock is so thin that a pencil would go straight through it, in fact, it's so thin that you can see not only the image printed on the reverse of the cover but the images on the first page of the comic when looking at it. It reminds me of that toilet paper that you used to get as standard in UK high school's during the 1980's, the greaseproof stuff that was entirely unsuited for the purpose it was created.

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

LSCC: London Super Comic Con and some other stuff that a few people may be interested in...


A reminder that I'll be sketching all weekend (including the Friday) at London Super Comic Con at the end of August. If you want a commission doing then make sure you don't leave it too late as I'll have a lot to get ready in the weeks leading up to the convvention. Here's a few recent pieces for anyone not familiar with my work. 

As always I'll be sketching for free at the con itself. They won't be as detailed as the pieces above as they'll be quicker and under less than ideal conditions but they are free. Why free? It takes the pressure off mainly but also, I like sketching for free. Unless they get slapped on Ebay soon afterwards which is irksome. 

I plan to bring a good selection of sketches and sketchcovers with me to sell also. Possibly some watercolours as I've discovered I can use them recently!


Actually it's been around 2 1/2 years but still, it's been some time! I had a book summit with my co-author (or am I his co-author? Meh, I'll take the lead) a few weeks ago where we managed, over four hours or so, to complete a read through and detailed edit of the first two full chapters and a prologue. Surprising to the both of us was, after all the difficulties and several bouts of mutual animosity, that it read rather well, as if we'd planned the synchronicity. 
Currently, I'm reading through more of Russ' chapters awaiting the next summit that I've been assured will take place once he's finished posing as a comic artist/writer/colourist at various events around the country (read his latest blog Here...some of what he says is true). He's very close to finishing his part of the'll be next week. It's been 'next week' since June 2016 but we're getting there, really. Everything is positive. That isn't just because Russ totally removed a couple of chapters that were terrible, it's because it's coming together. I'm messing about with book two right now, changing a good chunk of it as it was utter pap and was headed towards being about 30,000 words too long. 

Book one ends on a cliffhanger, in fact two different cliffhangers. I'm not going to explain that right now but it's cool. It's about one hundred thousand words long and is written in first person from, I'd like to say, 5 different character viewpoints. I have three myself...not sure about Russ as he's rewritten some of the chapters totally. Russ has also decided to base a couple of chapters around homework as the word homework is in the title and previously there was no mention of it at all. Russ' section is no longer a comedy either yet it contains some very funny passages. One of his characters, Butcher, I really enjoy reading. All of the above makes me...happy.

We're still hoping to publish the thing this year. Once we've edited it we're sending it out to several people for proofreading while we finalise the cover art and copy (I'll be drawing that, probably doing the copy also) and, if we're still speaking, make a short promotional video. Russ will be filming, I'll be playing one character (really it's so I can have a Tudor hat made for myself) and we're trying to source a very tall person to play the main protagonist. 


There are many sketchcovers that are good to draw on. By that, I mean that they accept pencil, ink and Copic markers without issue, watercolour too. Some though, are awful. What's this about, another beef regarding something irrelevant?

No. I'm making a point that, although I'm generally happy to draw on whatever blank variant there are certain brands that it's a massive struggle to make look good as I'll be fighting the thing at every stage. When an artist has issue with the surface of a blank variant, it's usually not because they're being difficult, blaming their tools for their own inadequacy, it's because it's a terrible surface to draw on. Some blanks are so bad that the ink won't dry for an hour and looks like oil on water, Copics won't stick or blend and again, slide across the 'paper' and watercolours laugh at the sheer audacity of expecting them to work in any way whatsoever in the manner in which they should.

So, here's a rundown of blank variants and their quality of surface to draw upon.

DC are pretty fine to pencil, marker, ink or paint on, always have been, no issues there. Fair play, well done. IDW, they're pretty good, the odd one has fought me from time to time but pretty good. 
Marvel, totally mixed bag. Anything from '16 on are fine and I've no issues with at all. Earlier though and there's a fair few blanks that are shiny disasters that Sharpies will be fine on but are a lot more difficult to draw on with anything else. And why publish blanks with a massive circular logo in the middle of the cover? Odd to say the least. But they are still manageable although Copics don't function as well as they should at all and generally, Copics (the pro ones anyway) are great, adaptable and versatile. Except when skating across a Marvel blank panicking as they've no idea what's happening to them.
Dynamite...they repel pretty much every tool ever made, even pencil. Yes, you can draw something on them but it's a lot easier for everyone involved if we just pretend they don't exist. 

Friday, 12 May 2017

Commissions and sketchcovers

I'm being asked to do more sketchcovers than ever (which is great) so I thought it'd be timely to post some examples with prices that people can link to. If you have blanks that you'd like me to draw the commission on, great, you can send them to me. I do also have a selection of blanks in stock.

If you need a commission for a specific con (ie. a Stan Lee for San Diego) so that you can get the book signed by an actor/actress or artist, then make sure you give me enough time to draw the piece and get it back to you in time! Sometimes I can fulfill a last minute request but not always!!

I also work with Scott's Collectables (for example with the recent Mark Hamill signing) so if you're looking to get a book that I've sketched slabbed or consign a book to them to get signed by an actor then I can send it straight to Scott's with the relevant forms to verify that I drew and signed the art.

So, here are some examples...first up, b/w single figure sketchcovers, copic, pencil and ink. £45

Colour sketchcovers £55

The following would be examples of pieces that are priced on a per job basis and would include multiple figures, detailed backgrounds and cover recreations.

Wraparounds are twice the price.

And some examples of pieces that've been slabbed via Scott's Collectables after being signed by an actor, in this case, Mark Hamill.

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

I'll be attending Thought Bubble on the weekend of the 23/24 September this year. I'll only be sketching for a short time each day, 90 minutes, like last year, as I'll be on the rotating creator table. As a result, if you want to get on my sketchlist then please come by early or you'll be disappointed. I'll be sketching on the weekend for free, as usual.

I'll be taking pre convention commissions as usual. See details below for prices and examples of the different stuff I do! I'm fast running out of space on my commission list! 
Get in touch if you'd like a pre-con commission sketch doing before the convention begins, in plenty of time so I have chance to fit it into my schedule/put it on my list. 
They're basically copic marker, pencil and ink and are  finished/detailed convention sketches. No, they're not Adam Hughes level of quality but that's reflected in the price! They do look quite nice though. As pre convention commission prices in general have seemingly gone crazy (have you seen some of the prices? And by people who've never worked in comics and can barely draw too...I won't get into that now but it irks) I'm quite the bargain 

I'll also have a variety of Copic marker tonal sketches for sale at the con as well as a selection of DC, Marvel, IDW, Archie and Dynamite sketchcovers and some original art too! I'll try and post pics of some of the pieces I have for sale nearer the time (and when I've had chance to draw them!)

Contact me at or via twitter @johnwatsonart or on Facebook to arrange a commisssion.



Ok, sketch covers. This has escalated, I'm getting asked to do loads of these before cons now. I do have a stock of my own but these are limited so I generally ask that you provide your own comic for me to sketch on. Cost is £45 for a b/w cover. Prices are for regular comic character ones and also for likenesses, examples below.  By the way, I don't mind at all if you get me to do these and then get them slabbed or sell them at a marked up price, as long as you're upfront about that, I have no problem with it at all! It's pretty cool seeing a piece I drew signed by Stan Lee or Michael J Fox!

Occasionally I get handed a very shiny Dynamite Entertainment cover...these are virtually impossible to draw on, just bear that in mind when asking me to draw something! The less shiny, the better. 

I've been asked to do wraparounds recently. These would be twice the price!


These are going to be £55, for now. I've been asked to do wraparounds too, these are going to be twice the price, see the Daredevil and Punisher cover below!

This photo shows the above comic signed by Mark Hamill and slabbed. Pretty cool!

I also draw on paper as well as sketchcovers! £45 for an A4 sized drawing and £90 for an A3 sized one (or about 17" by 11" if you're from the USA)
Colour will be £55 for an A4 and £110 for an A3

A4 Hemsworth Thor

A4 Evans Captain America

A4 Nightcrawler

A3 Julie Newmar Catwoman

A3 Wondergirl

A4 Quinto Spock

A3 White Queen

A4 Wonder girl

I'm also going to be doing watercolours, not colour over Copics, but just painted watercolours. I've painted some covers using watercolour recently instead of my usual oil and really enjoyed it. Examples to follow! 

I also do cover recreations, fully tonal finished drawings, oil paintings...pretty much most stuff. Feel free to enquire!