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So many of my trips for work the past couple years have started with this bear. Whenever I visit him at Paddington station, he asks if I've brought him marmalade, and sometimes I remember. This time I brought him Nutella, which he thought wasn't too bad, although we made the jar look like it hadn't been opened so I could give it to the Reeve family, with whom I was going to stay.



I was going out to Dartmoor to visit the writer and illustrator Philip Reeve to work on a couple secret projects we have tucked up our sleeves. I brought all this work to do on the train, but by the time I got to about Bath, I just wanted the train to arrive. My new phone lets me send text messages – with photos(!) – so I started texting pictures of a very bored cat.



One of the best parts of the journey is when the train goes right by the sea in Dawlish. I took this using an app called Instagram and thought it looked very artsy-fartsy.



And hurrah, the train finally arrived. The rain was tipping down on the moor, so I didn't do any landscape sketches right away, but I did it the warm kitchen and make drawings of everyone in the family. Here's Sarah, who's a great photographer, surrounded by gadgetry.








One of the first things I saw outdoors was a very wet and muddy alpaca named Alfie (or is it Iggie? I get them mixed up). He looks like he only has one ear in this photo.



Sam and I drew a comics jam and called it Ferrari Spider.




Even though it was technically a work visit, we did go out the next day for a lovely walk on the moor.



The clouds around the tors were very dramatic.







Playing around with my camera phone again. Here's a big, snotty highland coo. I love how this photo looks like it could've been taken anytime in the last 50 years. I tweeted it and Hayley Campbell at Gosh! Comics tweeted back: HIGHLAND COO! My Dad's favourite poem goes like this: "I saw a coo upon the hill, it's no there noo -- it's shifted."



We got well rained on, but we all had good jackets and boots, so it just made everything look more dramatic. I love the way this photo captures the light on the wet tussocks.





Okay, by this point the light display was just getting a little surreal...



Some lovely old standing stones. My studio mate Gary just saw them and got excited. Gary: Cool! How old are those stones? Me: Very old! Gary: Thanks for that.



This old stone bridge looks like something out of Lord of the Rings. That's Frodo the poodle sniffing around.



While we were having lunch, Sam had a bit of time to plough a few furrows. You can see a drawing Philip made over on his Dartmoor sketch blog.













Thanks for a lovely visit, Sarah, Philip and Sam!

Comments

(Anonymous)
Oct. 28th, 2011 02:04 pm (UTC)
Thank you
What a long post! I loved the cat. I loved the pictures of the moor. I loved the opportunity to stop cleaning the house and have a cup of coffee - the longer the post, the longer my break is. I shall now go back to cleaning wondering all the while about the secret project - Vern and Lettuce turn their tower block into a traction tower block and move to Dartmoor? Arthur's Quest to kill the Mankiest Monster? Plenty to think about.
Genevan Jill
jabberworks
Oct. 28th, 2011 02:11 pm (UTC)
Re: Thank you
Hurrah! I'm glad to give you a good coffee break excuse, Jill! :) Thanks, it's great to hear that you like the drawings and photos. Yeah, the projects with Philip are such good fun, I can't wait to be able to tell people about them.

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jabberworks
Sarah McIntyre

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