Monday, 29 March 2021

Cloudbusting is out now!

Breaking news!

 Cloudbusting is now available to buy as print on demand via Artithmeric!

Available to stock for libraries, bookshops and comic shops with an ISBN number.

See The Lincolnite feature here.

Thanks to my first customers, and for the requests for signed copies.

This version of Cloudbusting will be the first press copy.

The reason for this is because some of the pages are actually missing!

Some of the files were corrupted when my iMac broke down during the first lockdown, and Artithmeric have done a fab job of adjusting the pages, so I am endeavouring to include the missing pages later. 

For anyone that has purchased the early version, there will be a mini zine entitled "Jobkill" as a supplement. In the future, historians and graphic novel laureates will comment that this early version is a very rare copy worth millions of pounds!

Once I have recreated the missing pages, and uploaded a new PDF - which is difficult without the correct software - there will be another version of Cloudbusting. It will probably have a different cover.

Thanks again to everyone that has bought a copy so far!

Thought Bubble 2021


Good news! I will be tabling at this year's Thought Bubble Comic Con!

I will have copies of Taped From MTV, Ms Blackbird's Home For Peculiar People, and hopefully some copies of Cloudbusting for publishers, now that I have purchased the ISBN!

I am also hoping to run one or two workshops over the weekend.

Thursday, 24 December 2020

Sloth And The Foxing Day Parade

Sloth And The Foxing Day Parade is a mini comic inspired by the fox seen on my lockdown walks. With no commissions or sales #ExcludedUK, I still need to keep my skills up to date, so I had this concept for my nephews and nieces, for a Christmas pressie.

All of the cousins are in an adventure they never really could have because they are locked down in Sheffield and Wales.
Sloth is Henry's favourite soft toy, he gets lost in the woods, and the gang go looking for him.
Inspired by fox hunting sabs - Foxing Day is an alternative to Boxing Day hunts, where people dress up as foxes to support farmers and landowners from trespassers on their property.
An imaginary Studio Ghibli film.

All work is copyright Helen Dearnley Illustration 2020.
Sadly not available to license, as it is a personal project for family, so no permission is granted to reproduce this content for free.
However, this will hopefully be adapted for new portfolio commissions where appropriate.
Contact me for any commissioning or licensing illustration.


Monday, 2 November 2020

Cyberpunk Retraining


I'm retraining... in Cyberpunk!

A little idea I had ticking away in the background...

Partly the fact that my iMac has broken down, so it was layered and rendered slightly in Photoshop CS2 on my old Emac!!

My broken iMac is currently decorated with pictures of Bonnie from Knight Rider, in an attempt to summon her technological expertise to fix it.

Imagine if Bonnie upgraded K.I.T.T, and there was a futuristic Knight Industries Eight Thousand. Or K8.

And then imagine if Ally Sheedy's character in The Breakfast Club stayed exactly as she was - a weirdo, an introvert, the shy girl, an artist...

Never turned into something she isn't to get with a boy she would never be suited to in reality??

She can still hide behind a VR headset, hell, she's a virtual hacker.

And she's all prepared for COVID 2020 with her facemask and antibacterial handspray adapted to disinfect everything she touches - unless she decides to randomly spray it at mouthbreathers!

Contact me to license or commission your own Cyberpunk comic... 

Thursday, 1 October 2020


It's #Inktober #Inktober2020 and I'm going to attempt to create some imaginary funk album designs for Juliet Records #TheFunkLady #Funktober

If you like any of the images and would like them as prints for gifts, or any other merch available via my Redbubble shop, without the copyright logo watermark on purchase, give me a shout in the comments :-) No, you can't have them for free!! #notahobby

For #Inktober2020Day1 the first prompt is "Fish", so that was a good excuse to illustrate fishtail plaits. But in thinking of funk album design, Starfish would be the funkiest fish :-D Whilst looking for reference images, I also had Kate Bush's "Fish People" in mind... Instagram has an entire hashtag of fish people - check it out!

Only 7 Instagram likes - seriously?!


Day 2 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day2 is "wisp"

Or W.I.S.P. - the new single from Willow?? Will O? Who knows what the acronym stands for? You can't tell in this image, but it's shiny silver text :-)

Only 5 Instagram likes - poor show!

Day 3 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day3 is "Bulky"

I knew most people will draw large muscle men, as that's what the hashtag elicits on Instagram. My brain went "He-Man" > "Battlecat" > "bulky wool"

This version was drawn then photographed and run through an app, which colours it, but has lost some facial detail from the original sketch.

I reckon I forgot to post this, or it didn't post... Ah well!

Day 4 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day4 is "Radio"

This quote "We bring puffsticks to picnics and spit quick no lipstick" was graffiti'ed on a wall in an abandoned railway building - it appears to be no lyric to any song known...

This gained momentum with 10 likes...

Note: Day 4 and 5 are at the weekend, so as usual, they were produced prior to this. In no way do I work at weekends. Weekends are for bike rides and staying in bed all day by order of The Funk Lordz Chromeo.

Day 5 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day5 is "Blade"

I knew everyone would draw pictures of various knives, swords etc, probably in a fight scene, maybe some sort of King Arthur scenario.
But maybe it's because I spend way too much time in the studio listening to synthwave that my thoughts turned to Bladerunner...
Also an excuse to test out a mix of synthwave Posca pens and neon highlighter...

The version below was run through an app to give a crosshatch effect:

Let me know which of these you like best!
Only 8 likes - social media really isn't all that... social!

All work is copyright Helen Dearnley Illustration 2020 and may be licensed for commercial purposes upon negotiation and subject to professional illustration fees.
No illustrations may be used or reproduced without permission of the illustrator.

Day 6 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day6 #funktober is "Rodent"
This funky squirrel is coloured in a neon highlighter pen, so is actually a lot funkier than the photo!
He/she has an extensive collection of funk albums in the Acorn library, and is spinning some funky records. This is my favourite illustration so far :-)
"Rodent" was also popular with 17 likes.

Day 7 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day7 #funktober is "Teeth"
Teeth had 15 likes.

Day 8 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day8 is "Fancy"
I've been following the Self Isolating Bird Club over on Facebook since lockdown, and the fabulous Paul Harfleet not only illustrates all kinds of birds, but he also "gently references" them in fashion, with his fancy wardrobe of outfits!
It was difficult to choose which one of Paul's birds / outfits to illustrate, but I went for his nuthatch, as it had an 80/s vibe that appeals to me! 

Paul also does #ThePansyProject to tackle homophobia, which really shouldn't exist in 2020! Follow him on Instagram @thepansyproject

This post was the most popular on social media, as it was shared to the SIBC Facebook page, and got 2.3k reactions - if only that were £2.3k, seriously.

Day 9 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day9 is "Throw"

The Lincolnshire word for throw is "keltch"
"Throw" got 19 likes, so not bad, but could be better!

Day 10 of #Inktober #Inktober2020 #Inktober2020Day10 is "Hope"
Pretty popular, with 20 likes.

Day 16 of #Funktober was "Rocket"
Rocket received 18 likes, but again, I should've got a bot to spam it...!

Day 19 of #Funktober was "Dizzy"
This was last years' prompt, and I invented the synthwave album cover for imaginary band Misfit. For #Funktober, and without being able to use Photoshop due to my iMac issues, I made a simplified Funk version.
Obviously everyone was a bit dizzy, as this only had 8 likes...

Day 27 of #Funktober was "Music", and I was contemplating a visit to Nottingham Contemporary to see what looks like a very awesome Grace Jones exhibition!
Although not sure if I'll make it, due to lockdown restrictions now :-(
Either way, it was a good excuse to illustrate such an iconic funky lady!
15 likes for "Music"

Below is a selection of some of my own favourites from this year:
#inktober #inktober2020 

Day 12: Slippery
Instagram likes: 15

Day 13 Dune
Instagram likes: 6

Day 14 Armour
Instagram likes: 16

Day 15 Outpost 
The most popular illustration with 30 likes, not £30

#inktober1985 Rip was an excellent excuse to go back to Take On Me and Morten Harket's ripped jeans trend!

Instagram likes: 23

Day 22 Chef
Instagram likes: 17

Day 25 Buddy
Instagram likes: 19

Day 28 Float
Instagram likes: 11

I immediately thought of childhood memories of Spalding Flower Parade, and the colourful floats decorated in tulip heads.
But sadly, the Flower Parade ended in 2013, but had no funeral...

The banana theme has recurred with a Geest Shipping Line float, and some mischief maker has summoned Beetlejuice to bring the carnival atmosphere back from the dead with the Banana Boat Song, and of course, Winona Ryder floating above the ghostly float!

Day 30 Ominous
Instagram likes: 19

I was just going to draw a straight up raven.
But then my son said that whenever we used to pass the old Johnson Hospital building, he always thought a face would appear at the window!
Imagine if that face was the neon ghost of Kate Bush in the Wuthering Heights video, having got in at the window-ow-ow?!

Day 31 Crawl
Instagram likes: 11 - 30 if you include the second illustration...

I really wanted to draw a Devil's Coach Horse beetle!
They look so creepy!
And who is the best devil?
Why, Peter Cook of course, in Bedazzled!
And his coach would be a 1960's hearse.

Driven by poor Stanley Moon - blow a raspberry, Stanley!!

Friday, 21 August 2020

Wellbeing and Respite Lockdown Illustrations for portfolio and publishing

A series of illustrations for my portfolio developed during lockdown on themes of wellness, mental health, respite, walking, nature, cycling, wild swimming, clearing your mind, and beach trips / getaways.
These are for magazine publishers in the health and wellbeing sector.
They are available for license without the watermark logo, not available for free.
currently unpublished other than this blog as proofs, and are available for publication with a fee for usage to be negotiated.