I wrote these two strips after reading about a man who would be living on an iceberg for a year to raise awareness of climate change. I’m not sure that is going to help. Celebrities have been going to the Arctic and that has made little difference (except a few more emissions in the process). The science is in. Governments are well aware. The military and insurance companies have changed their procedures in preparation for the changes. The problem isn’t that people aren’t aware, it’s that they don’t want to do anything about it that might change their way of life. And living on an iceberg isn’t going to persuade them otherwise.
Arctic Circle is my bread and butter, but I have a few side projects as a professional cartoonist and one of them is illustrating books. Usually I illustrate other people’s books (The More I See of Men, the More I Love My Dog; The Oddies children’s book series; The Art of Cartooning and Illustration; to name a few), but about ten years ago I wrote one of my own. I sent Hoover the Hungry Dog out to lots of publishers and got some good feedback, but didn’t get a deal because, though they liked the story and the characters, they thought the illustrations were too cartoony and that there needed to be more texture to the colours.
Now that ebooks are here, that is less of an issue. I’ve also seen a lot of cartoony books be very successful (Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus is a personal favourite). It seems like Hoover the Hungry Dog’s time may have arrived.
Hoover is now available for the Kindle Fire and is FREE for Amazon Prime users for the next couple of months. If you are a member of Amazon Prime, I’d love you to download the book and let me know what you think – if you like it, please review it on Amazon.
I was recently invited to teach cartooning to a class of 25 seven to nine year olds and I went along to the school yesterday. We did a workshop on character design (specifically superheroes) and I was amazed to see how original and diverse their creations were. It was just as inspiring for me as it was for them AND I got to learn how to use one of those new-fangled whiteboards.
Here is a small selection of some of the super superheroes the class drew: