Category Archives: news

New card range… Fruity Veg

My latest range of cards landed a couple of weeks ago and I’m just getting around to mentioning it on here. Life has been pretty hectic the last few months, with a house and location move in July and my second daughter arriving in the world in August. We’re still in the blurry eyed, broken sleep stage and hence work of the paying bills variety, has been sitting a little on the sidelines.

Anyway, back to the point of the post, the FRUITY VEG, they’re here, REJOICE!


These designs were created over the month of August, intertwined with nappie changes and fuelled by caffeine.

My new workroom was transformed into a vegetable photo shoot studio, with Nature’s bounty and the local farmers crop, scattered about with scraps of paper with quickly scrawled daft wee faces on. It all came together and was a really enjoyable (and healthy) process. It’s given me a few ideas for future work, combining photographed objects and hand drawn elements. Though in true Grey Earl fashion… don’t hold me to it, it could take a lifetime to get back around to.

But for now…it’s time I introduced you to the Fruity Veg range, all available online, here.

coconut the grey earl illustration greetings card fruity veg humour

old bean the grey earl illustration greetings card fruity veg humour

orange pineapple cheese onion the grey earl illustration greetings card fruity veg humour

brocolli the grey earl illustration greetings card fruity veg humourAs well as being a hoot to think about and come up with, they have also instigated the long overdue decision, to use 100% recycled papers for all of my cards and envelopes…and apparently the recycling process of powered by wind…EVEN BETTER!

The full range is made up of many more designs, which you can see here.

Glasgow Museums – Away for the Day

A real treat of a project to work on, Away for a Day is a fantastic initiative, encouraging families to find out treasures around the Museums found in and around Glasgow, together. It allowed me to visit all of the museums, some which I had not happened upon in my time living in Glasgow.

The booklet is packed with activities to do and there’s stickers to collect, what’s not to love!

I’ll post more images from this booklet soon, but it is available now from all museums in Glasgow, so keep your peepers peeled and grab a copy.


The List | Wish List 2017

As ever, my timekeeping and promptness in posting relevant information continues to be as legendary as ever. This post harks back to the build up to Christmas 2017… and would have been an excellent thing to promote around autumn/winter last year, not at the start of the British summertime, a whole 7 months later…. but hey ho, I can only attempt to do better next time…. please remind me of this with the next spectacularly delayed blog instalment.

Thanks to The List for featuring my work, delighted to see it nestled between Kanye and Tupac, a perfect fit!

promo027WL17 - Pop Culture

Schools Poster Competition 2017 – Review

Being a part of last years Edinburgh Festival’s Schools Poster Competition was a real treat. I’ve already posted about the experience on here, so here’s a quick update from the Fringe Societies Annual Review…. promo031promo029promo030….Thanks again to all involved and for allowing me a part in the process of this great project.

Hunk o’ Junk

I’m here, I’m back! I know, it’s been ages right?! You’ve missed me I know, but dry those eyes, rub those tears of joy away…. they are joy tears, right?

I ask you to put down your pager, forget what you’ve been filling your day with,  no matter how important, I’m back with a series of blog posts, designed to blow your socks off, or at the very least, give your feet a tiny rest, whilst you sit down and allow your eyes to find their purpose, on this giant (or tiny) backlit screen (device)…. fear not, it really only should take about 4 minutes, then you can get back to that important thing you were in the middle of.

First blog post of 2018 begins with some photos taken waaaaaaay back in the year 2017! You remember that year, right? The absolute batshit crazy one, we weren’t sure we’d make it out of, without some kind of nuclear fallout. Well the good news is, we did!

The better news, is that I have these spanking snaps of my Hunk o’ Junk enamel pin to share with you, from the very talented Murray McMillan.

Photography by Murray McMillan

Photography by Murray McMillan

Murray is not only a photographer but a fireman, so he gets both thumbs up from me!

I love the snap of the falcon on the falcon, a piece of ephemera from my youth, that I sadly parted company with long ago, (oh god, now I’m the one crying), so big thanks to Murray for taking these.

He’s also regularly shared other work of mine, over on his instagram page. It’s such a massive help having this kind of creative support, so big up Murray…. give the man a follow and check out his other cultural/life snaps, some real gems.

If you’d like to get yourself or a loved one (or a mildly appreciated, not quite so loved one) a hunk o’ junk pin, then head on over to my etsy page….. HERE!

These bad boys are available quickity quick in the UK and also ship internationally, just as long as the hyper drive holds up and your letter box is big enough*

*pin badges are a scaled down, reproduction of the actual millennium falcon, so should fit through most post boxes/letter flaps. 


Fringe Schools Poster Competition 2017

I was extremely honoured to be asked to take part in the Edinburgh Fringe Schools Poster Competition, as their lead artist and member of the judging panel.


The competition is a fantastic initiative to get children thinking creatively and a great opportunity to encourage them to express themselves, be that through designing a poster, taking a photo, or writing a poem.  I am really looking forward to seeing what schoolchildren across the country come up with.

The project is now approaching its submission deadline, so for any young people across Scotland who would like to take part, now is the time to get cracking with those creative ideas.

So far, I’ve had the pleasure of delivering a Continuous Professional Learning session for teachers in Edinburgh, as well as an illustration workshop with a very creative group of pupils from Roseburn Primary, also in Edinburgh.

Here are some images taken from the Roseburn Primary workshop. Photography by Alan McCredie.

Shona McCarthy, the Chief Executive of the Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society, gives a good explanation about the importance of this years competition in relation to the Fringe’s 70th Anniversary.

The Fringe Schools Poster Competition has been an integral part of the Fringe for 36 years and we are very proud that the competition is one of the longest running arts outreach programmes in Scotland. To coincide with the Fringe’s 70th anniversary celebrations, we are relaunching the competition and offering three pupils from Scottish schools a unique opportunity to inspire three cover designs for the official 2017 Fringe Programme.

The Fringe prides itself on its ability to applaud diversity, promote inclusivity and inspire creativity in those who take part. The Fringe Schools Poster Competition was established with these values at its core, encouraging children to get creative. Next year promises to be a very special year for the Fringe and I am delighted that we will be revealing not just one, but three individual programme covers, inspired by school pupils in Scotland.

I created an illustration for the competition’s organisers, which has been used to promote the project and is currently featured in Fringe HQ’s window in Edinburgh!

The Competition and workshop at Roseburn Primary were featured on The Janice Forsyth Show, BBC Radio Scotland 

I’m very much looking forward to seeing the artwork submitted by pupils to this years Competition and will update the blog with more info (and hopefully some visuals) soon.

Press links

Love Kids

The Herald


A collection of work – at Platform

I’m consistent at least in the irregularity of my posts… so here I am again with another bit of news, following a unprecedented year off from posting. Not that the last year hasn’t been eventful, (far from it) it’s just that my hands have been kept busy changing nappies and making (very) early morning porridge.

That’s right, my partner and I (mostly her) produced a little Grey Earlette. She’s an absolute wee cracker and is outdrawing me already.

Onto the blog news….

I have been a very lucky boy this year. Not only with becoming a dad but also in the opportunity to present my work in my first solo exhibition – The Grey Earl, a collection of work. The very good people at Platform, in Easterhouse, approached me to showcase some of my work to coincide with their winter show Rapunzel, which I did the visuals for.


Huge thanks to Margaret McCormick for setting up the show, from initial talks about the work, to lining up drawings at the last hour.

The work is split up into sections, and here is a bit more info for anyone who might be interested in it….

Music: When I first dropped anchor on the Clyde, way back in 2010, I also had a collection of songs which I had been developing whilst travelling away from the UK. Folky type, sea shanties (from all those summers in Wales during the 1980’s, spent down Llandudno beach in a rubber dingy) were the starting point, which led into some other narrative based ideas.

Strangely, I never made it onto top of the pops, but I did meet some very kind, creative folk in the Glasgow music scene, who helped me to add some instrumentation to these songs and supported me whilst I attempted to play them live on occasion. Some of the visuals in the exhibition are from this early period and document a collection of songs from my Sea Gave Way, ep. I haven’t drawn in this way in a while, but am making plans for some new work which is a bit closer to this aesthetic.

Picture Hooks: I’ve written about Picture Hooks in the last post, with some images from the National Gallery exhibition. In the exhibition at Platform, I’ve been able to add in some of the development sketches too.


Characters: The majority of work in this show, features in this section and includes characters that I have been developing over the last 5 years (even a sneaky one from my uni days back in 2005 – strongman). Ranging from very early sketch work, to development visuals showing the process I use for adding colour to finished pieces.

The Girl – from Grandad and Me
Character development – Bandstand project

They are taken from a selection of picture book stories that I have been developing, but yet to find the time to take to completion. This is something I intend to address in 2017 (if I reach 2018 with no update, give me a poke, or send whatever emoticon, that shows some kind of animated prodding action or a look of displeasure at a lack of creative progress on my part.) The lovely thing about putting the work together for this show though, was being able to see it as a whole and printed out nicely onto paper as opposed to just viewing them on a computer screen one by one. I realised I’ve done quite a bit of work over the last couple of years….and work that, (wait for it),well, that I’m happy with. I’ve always  been pretty hard on myself regarding my creative work and found it difficult to find a happy place it. I think most creative people are probably like that. It can be useful, in terms of trying to better yourself, your work, but it can also be a pain in the buttocks for actually having the energy to pick up the pencils (they are very heavy pencils mind) and get going again. HOWEVER, this exhibition has given me a fresh perspective on things and I’m really grateful for that. Looking at the work together, it feels like I do have a style that feels Grey Early. The work has changed in terms of how it is produced and the materials I’ve used, but there is a consistency also with the characters that I’m beginning to get comfy with. I could probably go on a bit here with regards my own creative process and the challenges I tend to meet, both on paper and in my head, but I’ll possibly save that for another blog post. For now, Thank you Platform, for helping with the shift.

The Letter J: Also, plenty of info on the blog about The Letter J, the theatre company that I am a member of. In this exhibition I decided to display both illustrations that inspired and featured in our first children’s theatre production, Grandad and Me. There are also some concept drawings from projects that have yet to be realised. A glimpse into future shows perhaps?

Platform: As mentioned above, I created the artwork which has been used for this years winter show, Rapunzel, at Platform. This is the third year that I have illustrated their festive show and it’s always a real treat to work on. Featured in the exhibition are Three Little Pigs (2014), Puss in Boots (2015) and the current show.

Although I now live a bit further away from the venue than I used to, I’m always really interested in the work they programme and their approach to community involvement. They’ve also played an integral part in The Letter J’s progress, from day 1 of Grandad and Me rehearsals, to booking us to perform the final version to a lovely Easterhouse audience.

Here’s the exhibition details for anyone interested in making a visit.

9 December 2016 – 22 January 2017

Platform, The Bridge, 1000 Westerhouse Road, Glasgow G34 9JW

Many thanks to all who helped make this exhibition happen.

Platform  |  Margaret McCormick  |  Kelvin Framers  |  The Letter J  

5 reasons to apply for the Picture Hooks Mentoring Scheme 2016

5 reasons to apply for the Picture Hooks Mentoring Scheme 2016

We’ll be announcing the details of the 2016 Picture Hooks Mentoring Scheme at our conference next week. Here’s former mentee, Jon Bishop, on 5 reasons to apply. 

1. It helps you focus your work. 

The application process for the mentoring scheme allowed me to identify the areas that I wanted to develop most. Applying allows you to take stock and assess the direction you really want your work to take and make the necessary steps to move forward.

 2. Face to face contact with your mentor. 

Whether you’re a seasoned illustrator extraordinaire or just starting out, the profession can be quite a solitary experience. One of the most useful parts of the mentoring project for me, as well as the amazing tips and insights that my mentor, Debi Gliori, passed on, was having that face to face meet up time with her. I was able to bounce ideas back and forth with her and sometimes it helped just to blether away and clear my headspace.

3. Being part of the scheme brings exciting opportunities.

As well as the insight and support of the mentors, the scheme also brought me some other amazing opportunities. I’m still in shock over the realisation that my work featured as part of an exhibition at the National Galleries. Also, throughout the project, we had the chance to meet with a range of publishers, art editors and agents. What are you waiting for? Apply, apply, apply!

 4. As important as it is to apply, it’s also vital to reapply. 

When I was selected for the mentoring scheme in 2014, it wasn’t the first time I’d applied. If, indeed, like me, you weren’t selected the first time around, don’t be put off!

 5. Even if you aren’t chosen, great opportunities can come from it!

I was delighted when I was chosen to be a part of the programme in 2014, but it wasn’t all tears back in 2012. A friend of mine, who works in theatre, liked the story that I had developed for the first submission and so we decided to create a piece of children’s theatre around it. If the mentoring scheme doesn’t work out for you this year, the work you do create for the application may lead onto something else and it will undoubtedly benefit your folio for future applications.

So, in short, do apply to the mentoring scheme….and good luck! If the outcome isn’t what you wanted this time, make sure you don’t give up and continue to develop new material for the next round!

Picture Hooks – launch

Picture Hooks: Getting the Hang of Illustrating Children’s Picture Books.

I have been working on a series of illustrations for a children’s picture book idea, with the support and guidance of the amazing Debi Gliori. The launch was on Friday 30th October at the Scottish National Gallery in Edinburgh and runs until the end of February.

The Picture Hooks programme, funded by Creative Scotland, provides an opportunity for emerging Scottish illustrators to develop their practice under the guidance of established professional illustrators.

Here’s a few snaps from the night (photography courtesy of Picture Hooks):

Looking surprised with the Picture Hook’s mentees: Tracey, Catherine, me, Maisie and Hannah

Debi and me having a blether

The exhibition is located in the IT Gallery of the Scottish National Gallery (Princes Street Gardens entrance) until the 26th of February 2016. If you get a chance to visit, it would be great to get your thoughts on the whole show. There’s some amazing and diverse work featured and I feel really honoured to have been given the opportunity to show my work alongside such a great troop of illustrators.

Huge thanks to the whole Picture Hooks team, the staff at The National Gallery and Debi Gliori for her amazing guidance.

Stars are Braw – Christmas Collection 2015

Christmas isn’t just for us lucky folk down on Earth, it’s for those in galaxies far, far away too, you know?

Last year was The Party Animals, this year, I’ve decided to link in with the Stars are Braw range and do a small run of cheeky  festive cards featuring Darth and his pals/enemies.

photo (40)

giftcard multi

The Party Animals – 2014’s Christmas Card Collection… Available to purchase this year here

Here’s a closer look at the five designs that made it to print from the new Stars are Braw range….

That awkward moment….every year!
winter wolly wookie
No better time of year than to bust out the winter wooly, this one fashioned by a wookie.
This years Christmas decorations provided by those good chaps from the Empire, how thoughtful.
Christmas telly
It’s Christmas, put your feet/tail up, switch on the box and have a belter.
the sauce
The sauce is strong in this one.

These cards are now available from the online shop and should be in selected independent gift shops around Scotland, by November.

May the force and Christmas sauce be with you,

The Grey Earl, x

Museum Mouse


Museum mouse has been scampering about for a couple of months now, so I’m a little late in the day with this blog post. However I thought it might be a nice opportunity to share some of the prep work that went into mouses development.

This was a great project to work on for Glasgow Museums, and I was chuffed to get the gig, with mice popping up in other creative projects Grandad and Me this year too (more on that in the next post).

This mouse however, features in the ’25 Things To Do In Glasgow Museums Before You’re 5′ booklet and can be picked up from any of Glasgow’s museums. Here’s a bit of blurb from the Evening Times explaining it a little more….

The booklet follows a furry friend, Museum Mouse, around Glasgow’s nine museums.

As he goes, he suggests fun things to see and do in each free museum.

Children have been set a challenge – can they visit all nine museums, and complete the things listed, before they turn five?

Chairman of Glasgow Life, Archie Graham, said: “Visitors continue to flock to all nine Glasgow Museums, with over 3 million attendances recorded last year alone.

“A huge number of these are by families with small children.

“When you look at the incredible objects on display it is easy to see how with a little imagination and explanation the city’s museums can open up a whole new world to even the youngest of visitors.

“I know that if parents can spare a little time to help them enjoy the many adventures detailed in this new booklet, they could give their child a lifelong love of exploring, investigating and enjoying arts and culture.

“And I think that is a truly wonderful gift to give the next generation.”

Youngsters are encouraged to go on a dragon hunt at the Burrell, visit the peephole in GoMA inspired by the inside of a whale or dress up as characters from Sleeping Beauty at Kelvingrove Museum.

What’s not to love?

Here’s some of the prep work that went into finding the right mouse….

mouse montage

….and here’s a wee snap from the Daily Record, featuring Cameron, Molly and Eva, all taking part in the challenge.


and here’s one of the drawings of our mouse, doing a bit of exploration of his own.


For those interested, here’s a little more information on how to get your under 5 year olds started:

The booklets are available from any one of our nine venues and are free of charge. Just ask for one at the Enquiries Desk during your visit. Once your child has completed the activities for that venue, head back to the Enquiries Desk to get a sticker to put in your booklet.

Why not take on our challenge and try to visit all nine museums and complete ​the 25 activities listed?
Once you have finished all 25 things, download the certificate from the link at the side.


Red Door Gallery – Window display

It’s been an interesting week or two at Grey Earl Towers (affectionate name for my 2nd floor workroom). I am delighted to report that Red Door Gallery, (superb little shop/exhibition space in Edinburgh) asked me a little while ago to make up a window display to promote my new range of cards/prints, Stars are Braw. Excitedly, I jumped at the chance and so decided to try something a little different to add to the display.

Needless to say I’ve been going craft daft, revisiting old school papier mache  techniques and making more stuff out of bog rolls than a whole Blue Peter team could muster. I thought I’d keep a little log of the building process, incase I ever wanted to start the toilet roll toy building empire. First up, the old boy, DV.

And here’s a couple of snaps of the illustrated wares that old D pants here will be featured on, in the window display and to purchase in store.

And here’s the rest of the motley crew in all their toilet roll glory….

The very talented Helen Gallogly (the better half) offered her costume making services and gave little Darth his very own cape too! Delighted with the results, cheers pet.

You’ll be able to check these little chaps out on Monday 4th May, (May the Fourth…..) near the Grassmarket at Red Door Gallery on Victoria Street, Edinburgh. I’ll be in the window, painting and sticking and hanging, do pop by for a looksy and a blether.

Thanks to Red Door for the opportunity, looking forward to seeing how it all comes together.

Arts Across Learning Festival

I was delighted to be asked to create the main illustration for this years Arts Across Learning Festival in Aberdeen. It was a treat to put together and looking at the programme which came through the last week, it looks like an amazing line up of creative workshops and performances.

Due to all things worky I’m a bit gutted not to be able to make it up north for it, but for any Aberdeen pals (who know any young un’s), I strongly urge you to take a peak and get involved.

new year, new pencils

And so dusk settles in and the sun dips down on another year and I bravely set my alarm clock for the coming dawn. Well it’s already arrived actually, I should have written that a whole blinkin four days ago, but you see what I’m getting at….

2014 was a rather splendid year in a lot of ways and like everyone else, it was also a year of some pretty stinky downers. Thats the way this whole life system thingy works though isn’t it, the ebbs and flow, the tips, dips and doons, the peaks and troughs, the bottom and the…..I’ll stop there. Rather than focus on the bleak, black moments (or possibly even the ‘grey’ hue that I’m accustomed to), I shall shed a little info on the multicoloured rainbow moments of my 2014…..I can hear the bloggers yawning already.

Don’t worry though, I’m going to do it in trusty heartfelt bullet point format to keep it snappy….

  1. Co-created and performed in ‘Grandad and Me’, my first outing into children’s theatre
  2. Toured Scotland, (in a musical performance capacity, not just a self funded megabus excursion) and visited some delightful new places, the Isle of Eigg being one.
  3. Moved in to a super flat with the better half and bought all manner of grown up things, like my first roasting tin and potato masher.
  4. Extended the Grey Earl product range and invested in 1000 mugs (If it doesn’t work out, then I’ll never have to worry about finding a clean vessel for a brew again)
  5. Applied and got picked to be part of the Picture Hooks project for 2015 (more on this soon….I’m quite excited!
  6. Created a new set of cards (Party Animals) and learnt how to ‘animate’ (sort of/not really) in After Effects…..Watch the ‘animations’ here.

All in all, a very productive and creative year and somehow I managed to get through it all with paying all my bills and rent! Showaddywaddy wow wow.

To anyone who helped me out or supported the creative cause, investing in any of my work or just lending me a pencil sharpener in a time of need, I thank you. From the bottom of my little, pumping, ventrical laden heart, I thank you. I feel very blessed to be working creatively, enjoying it and able to make an honest crust.

And so onto 2015, what surprises will it have in store? what new drawings will I create? and which kitchen appliance will I next purchase in my attempts to be a proper, real life grown up….I’m hoping it’s going to be either an egg slicer or a toast rack.

Here’s a cheeky preview of a new set of cards and prints I’ll be launching in the very near future…..


The range is called ‘Stars are Braw’ (for legal purposes), and is a celebration of all things geeky and science fictiony….All chucked in the mix with a bit of my homegrown version of the Scottish dialect (sorry to anyone native to the fair country).

All the best for your 2015’s, may they be creative in all sorts of ways and filled with more peaks and tips and good bits than those troughs and dips and not so pleasant (but equally inevitable) segments.

Thanks for the support,




The Three Little Pigs

Here’s a poster I made up for those lovely chaps at Platform in Easterhouse, for their winter show, The Three Little Pigs.

“The Three Little Pigs have never got along. They are one very unhappy family! Now they’re all grown up they have moved out with little houses of their own.

They are all tucked up safe against the cold winter snow. Until…a very mean Wolf comes along and changes everything!

Will the Pigs escape the wolf? Will they find somewhere to live? Will they ever stop arguing with each other? Come and join us as we find out all about the Pigs and watch and
laugh along as they try to have themselves a merry little Christmas, whatever it takes!”

If you’d like more info or to book tickets, get in touch with the box office:

0141 276 9696(opt 1)

Party Animals

giftcard multi

They’re here! The Party Animals are just in time for Christmas and making them has been a right joyous affair. From sketching out ideas to making little movies to promote them, it’s been a fun learning process and hopefully it’s a range I’d like to add to all year round, not just for Christmas…..sounds like an animal charity tag line!

I’ve got a few more characters in line to feature which I’m hoping to get to soon after the new year, but if there’s any animals you’d particularly like to see in a party pose, then do drop me a line. I’ll send you a free card once it’s made up and even name it after you!

Here’s one of the movies I made using after effects, featuring my good pal, Mr Liam Chapman as Mr Sloth. For anyone who knows how to animate, or indeed is a fan of the medium….I can only apologise and hang my head….I will get better!

A whole bunch of my other pals pitched in and did some sterling acting work. Big thanks go out to the Glamorous Ms. Judith Williams, Geraldine Heaney, Becki Gerrard and the missus, Helen Gallogly. I owe them big time, so going to take them on a day trip to see one of the party animals in real life….depending on how well they sell mind, it may have to be the yet to be drawn Party Slug who resides on our back door step. Still he does do some pretty impressive tricks and is incredible at musical statues, we’ve whiled away many an hour playing that one.

They’re now available at the online shop, and you can save big time with the multipack, 5 for the price of 4, whoooft!

Here’s a nifty link:

Batboy perty!

Bless their cotton sockys, them there ladies at Black Box Boutique over in Edinburgh. Putting on a batboy party is no mean feat, but we pulled it off so a big thanks to them!

… there was dancing, dressing up and marshmallows with dipped chocolate and a smartie on top ( a revelation to me!). A whole heap of pals and some new faces rocked up to don primary coloured underpants over their troo’s and slip on some superhero fit marigolds.

It was also the launch pad for the new range of prints and giftcards inspired by the two cities I spend most of my time flitting between, Edinburgh and Glasgow. Simply titled ‘Yaldae’, these designs (I hope!) capture the real essence of each of the cities, with galloping pandas and drunkenly mountable statues avec traffic cones.

The party was a hoot and it’s got me thinking about what next for batboy (aside from keeping under the radar of DC comics!)….. I have a few ideas brewing as well as the kettle, so for now I’d best take a break and get a cuppa down me….but like the never ending churn out of piss poor superhero movies and the inevitable end credit tag lines ‘…..he will be back….to be continued…..this is not over….yadda yadda’,  fear not, batboy will indeed return!

In the meantime, I’m going to dress up in the costume made by my mrs, the very talented Helen Gallogly  and get my batdance on…. see you at the disco’s.

Red Shoes

For those of you who are signed up to Tramways info in Glasgow, you may have seen some visuals not too disimilar to this recently. My good friend Judey (two shoes) Williams is putting on the Tramways first ever winter show and I got the gig of designing the promotional material for it, whoopy!!! This is the illustration that I provided…..


…..and down here is the first drawing, to give you an idea of the loose, sketchy way I work when putting ideas together. 


The final render of the image is going to be a digital version, which you can see here but I’m hoping that the hand drawn aesthetic will appear in some context during the run of the show starting at the very end of November.

It will undoubtably be a beautiful show so I encourage you all, young, old and anywhere in between to get yourselves a ticket and head along.

Click this link to get booked in!

been a while

Hello there, I’m sorry it’s been so long, I did write something specifically for you, a little while ago, but the dog ate it. Fear not, I found that dog and using a multi pack of pedigree chum and a feather duster, managed to retain the chewed, half digested article. Thank the Lordy, I hear you say!


….and so, to you, the reader, I bestow these words, rescued from his slobbery chummy chops.

‘I’ve been meaning to write a little post for a while now as a lot has been happening. Time for such musings seems a little hard to find these days, but that is no bad thing, and so I am grabbing the opportune moment just now, on a train to Edinburgh, to write some things down and hopefully catch up with myself….and you, how are you old bean!? How rude of me not to ask first! Please forgive me. You’re looking very well……I’ll continue,

Where to begin…..Let’s start with the biggy, myself and good friends, dear pals and creative comrades, Miss Judith Williams, Miss Ruth Janssen and Mr Andy McGeoch have successfully been granted support from Creative Scotland to create ‘Grandad and Me’ (That’s a lot of creating!). For those of you who have no clue as to what Grandad and Me indeed is, where have you been! You should probably click here, like the page and find out more right away!

gdad poster_fb

In brief, it is a piece of children’s theatre, which will be unleashing on the weans in 2014. We’re totally over the moon and it has signalled a new direction in my work on several levels.

Things are shifting and I’m making some good breakthroughs in terms of my creative output and my productivity with regards The Grey Earl in a business sense (I made an excel sheet with digits and names and prices and everything and even saved it into a shiny, organised, colour-coded folder on a thing called a hard drive!).

Some new shops have come onboard the Batboy train and I’m chuff chuffed (see what I did there?) that he’s now being sold as far South as tropical Exeter (Good Golly Miss Molly) and as far north as Inverness (Ginger Pickle).

I’ve been working on a new Christmas range of giftcards featuring mr batboy, which I’m happy to announce, is now on sale through Made From Scotland, another joint venture. Some of you may be a little disappointed to hear that the new range does not contain the full frontal nudity of Santa, back in the first batch in 2012, but there are some rather tasty Christmas puns still, as well as a couple of new characters for Batboy to deal with.

candy bane fb

I’m having a big reshuffle at the moment, my creative time ‘working’ has needed a little bit more of a focus and I’m trying to find the right balance with it all. In the past (i.e. as recent as yesterday!) I have felt that my endeavours are all being kept up in the air in a sort of juggling motion, and although I do own three juggling balls, I am pretty rubbish at said activity. Life outwith of drawing has also needed a little attention and I feel that I am taking some good steps forward in dealing with a few ways of thinking which haven’t always served me well in the past. Don’t worry folks, nothing too drastic, but glad to be asking questions and finding some resolution or clarity on them. I’d give it a week and I reckon I’ll be levitating from enlightenment….might be a cheaper means of travel n’awl, the no.6 bus is getting a touch pricey and the seats can be awfy grubby.

The last few months there has been a flurry of activity musically, which I have enjoyed and feel very grateful for. I played a set recently at my favourite venue in Glasgow, The Glad Café (mon the soof!). It was a real treat, with Cat Calton helping me out on strings; and thankfully the nerves which once existed are now proving to be more manageable. I am finding ways of settling on stage and realising that there is a process for me to follow which helps. Breathing and not drinking four pints of high percentage beer before I play are two of those steps.

Ere’s a wee foty of me adopting my usual hunched over and stare at the floor routine and miss Calton, playing at a living room gig with Sofar, twas right nice.


I’m hoping to record some new songs with Andy McGeoch from The Letter J, which I’m excited about and will broadcast those soon as they’re done.

Lot’s of posts to come from all the visuals I’ve been knocking up for various projects, so I’ll stop waffling and get the illustration gorge fest on the go….get yer forks n’ knives ready, there’s a whopper load on the way!

Lots of love to you, you lovely thing you,

From the electronic writing keypad device of,

The Grey Earl

Grandma and her wee dug


Hello there, been a bit on the quiet side the last few months, sorry about that….but I’m back with a few new doodles to show. First up is Granny! This is a bit of concept work for a children’s picture book story that I am hoping to develop over the summer. It’s been great to start thinking about new characters and stories and I have a little idea that is shaping up nicely. I’ll put a bit more info up about it all soon, so keep an eye (or both) on those social media thingymabobbys. 



This is Derek. I first drew up this little chap about five years ago whilst living in Melbourne. I’ve decided to revisit some of my older creations and work them up into some new illustrations and story ideas. I’m hoping in a month or two to have some work to show from all this, but for now heres an introduction to Derek and the idea!

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Rum Pah Pah !
Rum Pah Pah !

Woo Woo, lots of good news flying about The Grey Earl office at the moment. I can’t comment on too much of it just now, but if it all comes to fruition, I’ll definately be making a papier mache version of the instrument featured in this post and running about Glasgow with it, vocalising ‘RumPAhPah RumPahPah’ at the top of my voice, over and over and over!

Siobhan Wilson | limited edition print

Siobhan Wilson | limited edition print

This is the artwork we decided to use for a limited run of Siobhan Wilson’s recent ep ‘Glorified Demons’. She is currently on tour with Mr Willy Mason no less and will be selling them at the next few shows around the UK. Keep yer peepers peeled….

you can also buy her music via the means on the world wide web in digital format! Click the link and treat yourself to some very pleasent music:

Siobhan Wilson – EP concept art

Siobhan Wilson - Glorified Demons, concept art.
Siobhan Wilson – Glorified Demons, concept art.

This was the first illustration I made up for the lovely Siobhan Wilson. Though it didn’t end up getting used, some of the main features were carried through to the final version.
I really like the idea of doing more work for musicians, as it totally changes the way that I approach the creation of the illustrations. I’ll post up the artwork tomorrow that ended up being used in the limited edition run of Siobhan’s EP, ‘Glorified Demons’. If you see her at any shows over the next month or two, you might just be able to get your hands on one!

coming soon in giftcard and large print format
coming soon in giftcard and large print format

It’s been a busy few weeks at Grey Earl Towers. Yesterday was spent jaunting about Scotland on a Megabus marathon, (four cities, one day) to try and get Batboy in shops outwith of Glasgow and Edinburgh. Had some success and am pleased to announce that Dundee will be the next city to be stocking Grey Earl merch. A few other shops in Perth and Edinburgh have shown interest in a new range of illustrations that I’ve been working on….The Kindergarten Crusader doesn’t even feature in them! Who’d have thought?!
The bus was hellish, but being a veteran (always disgruntled) passenger on the M.Bus, I was prepared and came packing weight. ‘Weight’ being a pack of pencil crayons and sketch pad. Managed to finish up another Batboy design (above), which will hopefully be online and in the shops of this fair country sooooon.

News of a new range of prints coming soon, stay tuned…..


goin the mooooon….I’m back! With a blog! My chums in the creative sector have been on at me for a while to get onto the blogging scene and after a steady three years of building up the skills to create one, it is here. Wasn’t that hard really, just did it in five mins with a cup of tea and a chocolate digestive in hand.
I’m hoping to be one of those regular bloggers, who updates often with informative posts and lovely images of my ongoing creative exploits. Failing this, I will take photos of food on plates.
To kick things off, I have added a new illustration (above) which I did for the recent production Grandad and me
as part of the recently formed The Letter J team. I am delighted to be one of the members of this charming little collective and am proud as potatoes of our work so far….More news on this soon.
I’ll leave it here just now, I’ve run out of things to say and I can see a plate of beans on toast that is screaming out for a instagram filter photo shoot.