By Michael Renouf: I’m a Practitioner of Cartoonism with a Licence to Cross Wires, mostly working in educational publishing in London, UK. I’ve been freelance for a long time, with periodic interruptions for child-minding, logo-designing and animating maps for local government presentations. In danger of becoming a Theoretical Cartoonist, instead of a practitioner, I started a drawing-a-day-for-a-year blog in 2007 called Non-Stick Plans. The year is long ago up but I’m still posting the odd drawing - some of them very odd. Below is a selection of images, mostly from that very blog.
Vermicellist - My work could be described as ‘warm’ rather than ‘cool’, so I’m waiting for a time when warm is the new cool. My influences include Pericle Luigi Giovannetti, William Heath Robinson and Gerard Hoffnung; all ‘warm’ cartoonists. My main currency is puns, either visual or verbal (like this drawing), occasionally both.
Monsieur LeCliché - This is from a series inspired
by a trip to Paris and the people we didn’t see there (including Napoleon,
Quasimodo, Fifi the poodle and Marie Antoinette). You can see the others
on Nonstick starting here.
Badge of Courage - This idea was from my very first
notebook of cartoon ideas and has been through many different versions
over the years and I’ve kept it in my portfolio. I studied graphic design
at college but spent alot of time towards the end plotting my escape,
absconding to museums and galleries and drawing the people there in tiny
sketchbooks. In the end my final show was entirely made up of black and
white cartoons. I didn’t really start to learn to draw until after I left
Flaminco - or Flamingo Flamenco - This is from a book
I’ve published on Lulu called ‘Where
the Birdies is,’ a collection of 60 bird-themed drawings from Non-stick
Plans. I’m in the process of putting together another, unthemed, anthology
of Nonstick drawings which should be published in the summer.
MindFields College - One job that came directly from the blog was a
series of ‘logos’ for seminars and workshops at MindFields College, run
by the Human Givens Institute. These
ones are: Demystifying Autism; Working therapeutically with couples; Dealing
with conflict; and The fast trauma and phobia cure. MindFields
College “teaches what is known about human nature (the Human Givens)
and runs courses for psychologists, psychotherapists, teachers and others
about how to apply this rich knowledge to the lives of depressed, angry,
anxious, traumatised, addicted and autistic people.”
An earful - I hope this speaks for itself.
Night fever - This idea was originally drawn for the Hopes
Project - set up by a friend of mine to ‘give children an opportunity
to be active participants in their learning, so that they can fulfill
their potential to think, learn and develop’ using visual stories and
metaphors. I redrew it later for the blog. It also appears in ‘Where the
You are what you eat - Another visual pun.
Malpas the Dragon - A few years ago I illustrated a
children’s book by Ann Cattanach, a retired play therapist, published
by Jessica Kingsley.
Written specifically for ‘children who find it hard to love and be loved’
it had very modest sales. This represents my non-digital style, using
coloured pencils with a compacted-charcoal line.
Wren’s egg - This is another drawing from my book ‘Where
the Birdies is’. Like most cartoonists I’m often asked, “Where do you
get your ideas from?” The answer is “Which ones?” This one, for instance,
came from looking at an eggshell. None of the others did.
Email: mrenouf at googlemail dot com
Blog: Non-Stick Plans