illustration

Skin Microbiomes and Magazine Publications

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It's kind of a crazy exciting feeling to open up the mailbox and see something you drew in there. This is an illustration I made to accompany a press release from my university earlier this year, which described current research being conducted on bacterial communities on the skin, and how these change with neurodermitis (eczema). It was so much fun to read the researchers' findings, see how these bacterial communities change and how it is being researched, and to produce diagrams to communicate it.

Now, months later, the research is being covered in this issue of Wirtschaftsmagazin for dermatologists, and I'm totally thrilled to have my pictures included - not just inside the magazine accompanying the article, but on the cover! Huge thanks to Katharina Thier, the author (who I actually met last year at a several-day seminar on visual science communication), who spotted my work in the press release, and gave me the opportunity to have it included in the magazine. If you read German, find her article here!

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Illustration Weekend

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This past weekend I took a train back up to Denmark to spend three days collaborating with other illustrators for an anthology. It was spontaneous and open and full of beautiful ideas and work, and I found myself so excited to be re-immersed in an artists' environment. 

We had almost no restrictions to the anthology, beyond a colour palette and the prompt word "Wunderkammer" (cabinet of curiosities). I thought about the things I collect, stones, and the beautiful elongated shape of the ones I collected while visiting Lake Baikal, in Russia. They are eroded by the tides of the lake (Baikal, with 20% of the world's fresh water, is large enough to have tides, unlike smaller lakes!), and have these entrancingly long oblong shapes. Thus this short comic, on the collecting of stones.

I made the following two images as well, inspired by some of the objects other participants brought in or described. I didn't ultimately use them for my final submission to the anthology, but perhaps they'll show up in future work!

Campground mice, beer festivals, and bus doodles

Over the weekend I went to the Mikkeller Beer Celebration in Copenhagen (You may recall that I made a comic about it, which you can read here), and stayed at a campground. Since I do a daily comic, I was intending to finish it ahead of time for those days, so that I could enjoy my beer and my tent with complete peace of mind. But of course, humans make loads of fancy plans and god guffaws, or however the saying goes, and I left Viborg having completely failed to draw any mice.

BUT buses were made for catching up on all the pencil sketches you failed to do before getting on them, and campgrounds were made for sitting at picnic tables and inking comics at dawn, and I would like to present the following three issues of The Mouse Tales as an example of what is still manageable on the go.

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Read more on Instagram  @themousetales !

Read more on Instagram @themousetales!

Meanwhile the beer festival was amazing and camping was fantastic. It rained a bit overnight, so I had to do some air-drying of my tent in the sun the next day before I could pack it up - but waiting for the tent to dry provided a perfect opportunity for inking some campground comics!

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And some bus doodles. Is it kosher for people to put their feet up on the window of the bus?!?

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The Snow Queen: illustrations

A few weeks ago we had a two-week book illustration course from Alexis Deacon, during which we had the opportunity to illustrate old stories from Hans Christian Andersen. As a brief aside, Hans Christian Andersen is far from my favourite author. His stories are grim and full of violence against women, who are usually either old hideous witches to be killed, or passive and compliant young ladies to be kidnapped and wed. But after reading through quite a few of his stories (and getting properly riled up while doing so), I finally got to the Snow Queen, and let me tell you, this story has some fantastic female characters! So much so that I am willing to put Hans Christian Andersen back in my good books.

You can find the full story here. But here's a brief summary: a mirror that reflects only ugliness gets broken, and its shards are scattered across the world. In some cases they become lodged in people's hearts, and these people become embittered and angry. One of the people who is poisoned with a shard of the mirror is a little boy named Kay, best friend and neighbour to a girl called Gerda. Kay becomes cruel and distant, and one day when he's out sledding, he ties his sled to a fancy sleigh and is guided away from the city. The sleigh's driver is the snow queen, and she takes Kay with her to her home in the north. And that's the last we see of Kay until the end of the story, because guess what - this story is all about Gerda and her badass journey to go and get Kay back! She meets all kinds of fantastic characters along the way, including a well-intentioned but rather selfishly maternal witch who just tries to keep her, a lovely romantic crow couple who help smuggle her into a castle, a prince & princess who help set her on the right path to go north, a very hyper and rather crazy robber girl who gives her a reindeer to ride north, and a couple of independent ladies living on their own in cabins in the far north. Notice anything about the majority of these characters? They're female, they have great, personality-filled roles, and they all work together to help Gerda get where she's going. And of course Kay gets rescued, because Gerda and these ladies are awesome.

Okay, that summary wasn't actually brief. Sorry. But Gerda is officially my favourite Hans Christian Andersen character by a long shot, and in the end I had a great time doing these illustrations. I chose to illustrate Gerda, the women she meets along the way, and the Snow Queen herself. Oh, and Kay gets an appearance as well.

Mice and lino

As many of you may know, I have a series of daily mouseventures and misadventures going on over at The Mouse Tales, and thought that my little troublesome mice would be a perfect subject for some more practice with lino!

Since I've kept the mouse pair apart and searching for each other for the better part of 2018 thus far, I thought it was only fair to reunite them for this lino print, doing their very favourite thing, which is dancing.

Cutie patooties.

I am starting to think about making mouse merchandise available during the second half of this year. Lino prints, cards, and other stationary will very likely be part of that! Updates to follow.

Editorial Illustration with Simon Væth

Last week we had the great opportunity to work with Simon Væth, an illustrator out of Copenhagen whose work doing editorial illustration for magazines is honestly beautiful. We had a series of short assignments in which we had to create illustrations to accompany articles on various topics, including bed-sharing in relationships (or rather, an absence of bed-sharing!) and how technology helps or hurts our work-life balance. 

For bed-sharing, I did a line drawing & a separate sketch with pencil shading, scanned them in, and played around with them in photoshop till I felt happy with the results. For the article on technology & work-life balance, I dove totally out of my comfort zone and tried out lino-cuts for the very first time! Which are AWESOME. I had so much fun digging around cutting out shapes that I hoped would make sense. And I think for the most part they do! Colour was added in photoshop.