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Newsletter January 2023

An interview with Ian Miller

Picture a young Ian Miller, in Pasadena, buying a new drawing pad while he gets ready to work on Cool World for Ralph Bakshi. And these drawings were the result.

We have nine, which Ian produced then, now for sale. They have the vigour and the assured style of someone about to begin a crazy new project.
You can hear all about that, and about Ian's earlier work for Bakshi on Wizards on a really interesting podcast from The Cinema Society in a Conclave 8 Special. It's a lively and companionable conversation with Verifier Andy and it takes in much more about Ian's work, including his love of Mervyn Peake.

Ian Miller originals

And here is a detail Ian's Hall of Bright Carvings from Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast which is available as an archival print, along with many others.
Conclave 8 Special. Interview with Ian Miller.
Denial, by Arvo Bickerton Packer

And now here's another young artist, just starting out on his film career but a few decades later. Hes Arvo Bickerton Packer, still a student, and he's already written, produced and directed his own short film, Denial, which is on track to be shown at film festivals this year. Enormous thanks to Olivia Williams, the actor for the central part, who was so generous with her time.

Jim Burns and 1984

It's a combination that just had to happen. After a lifetime working in SF it was perfect for Jim to be approached to illustrate such an early classic. Setting about it with great care and attention to detail, he produced 17 intricate and highly-detailed pencil drawings for the Suntup edition of this collectors' classic and decided to keep the original drawings for posterity. Until now.

He's now decided that he can part with some of the drawings, and they are highly collectable. Here are just two, but if you're interested to see the rest do just let me know. They are A4 (8 x 11 inches approx.) and will be £650 or $795 each.
One more award for Neil Packer

Neil's been working for The Folio Society for a very long time and the company has grown enormously now, consistently producing the best books for this very lively collectors' market. At the recent British Book Design and Production awards ceremony last week they swept the board for the prizes, and that included the award for their recent edition of The Divine Comedy, illustrated by Neil last year.
Juggling Dante with Harry Potter proved to be a busy time for Neil but he produced wonderful work for both, just showing that constantly adapting his style to suit new projects is what makes life interesting for him. The work for both projects was produced digitally but we do have originals by Neil from earlier projects.

Here are some from Walker Books' edition of The Odyssey.
Jim Kay – and Kate Bush

In other news, you may remember that Jim Kay needed a moment to recover from ten concentrated years working on illustrated editions of the Harry Potter books. Just as he was coming up for air, he had a phone call from none other than Kate Bush who asked him to work on the cover of her book of lyrics, How to be Invisible. What perfect timing. Many thanks to her, for her warm approach and encouragement.
All images copyright © the artists.