Thursday, April 7, 2016

A groovy guest post from Andrew and Chris Judge, creative geniuses behind "Create your Own Spy Mission"

Exploding into our blog like a TNT-packed briefcase, here's an awesome guest post from Chris and Andrew Judge, creators of the brilliant new "Create your own Spy Mission" out now from Scholastic.

We put the spotlight on Andrew and Chris to find out a little bit more about their favourite artists and influences. Take it away guys!

1. Uderzo
Andrew: My favourite illustrator of all time has to be Uderzo, the artist who drew Asterix. His character drawings are amazing, but it’s his backgrounds that I loved the most as a kid. Especially the incredible aerial views he drew of Rome, Athens and other cities of the ancient world. I probably learned more about classical Greek architecture from Uderzo then I did in architecture school.

2. Herge
Chris: My aunt and uncle gave me Tintin in Tibet for Christmas when I was about 10 and it blew my mind. The incredible movie-like story telling astonished me but it was the artwork that would start me on the road to my love of drawing. I collected the rest of the series over the next few years but this book is still my favourite by a long shot.

3. Artists of 2000AD
Andrew: Some of the artists in the comic 2000AD are brilliant, particularly in the golden era in the eighties. Artists like Cam Kennedy, Mick McMahon, Brian Bolland, Kevin O’Neill. Google any of those names to see what I’m talking about.

4. Daniel Clowes
Chris: There are several comic artists that bowl me over any time a see their work but for me it is Chris Ware, Jamie Hernandez and Daniel Clowes that are the masters as far as I’m concerned. The 20 issues of Eightball are some of the greatest and funniest comics ever put on paper.

5. Chris Haughton
Andrew: I have a three year old son, so I’m immersed in picture books at the moment. One of our favourites is fellow Irishman, Chris Haughton. I can only imagine the amount of time and effort that goes into making drawings that look so deceptively simple.

6. Chris Ware
Chris: There is not much I can say about this prolific magician. He started illustrating his Jimmy Corrigan strip in his mid 20’s with the exact same incredible standard he still holds today. I can only assume he has a clone duplicator as there is no possible way a single human could produce the vast quantities of incredible artwork that he does.

  1. Kathi “Fatti” Burke
Andrew: Another plug for an Irish illustrator. Like Chris Haughton’s drawings, Fatti’s look much too simple to be simple. You can tell from looking at her amazing new book, Irelandopedia, just how much time and effort goes into getting the illustrations just right. Can’t wait to see more books from her.

  1. Jon Klassen
Chris: Jon Klassen is my favourite contemporary children’s illustrator working today. Not only are his books filled with subtle hilarious humour, often achieved with just a look in a character’s eye, but his artwork is somehow utterly timeless and modern at the same time. I am convinced there is a wise old man inhabiting his young body.

  1. Mitsumasa Anno
Andrew: Mitsumasa Anno is a Japanese illustrator who has been making beautiful wordless storybooks since 1968. They are the sort of books that you just want to stare at for hours. Check out Anno’s Britain or Anno’s Spain for his crazily detailed aerial views of famous landscapes. Like Uderzo’s, now that I think of it! I’ve just realised why I became an architect.

  1. Tove Jansson
Chris: Tove Jansson created a world like no other with her Moomin characters. There is something so whimsical but heart-breaking about her artwork and stories that are just out of reach. I will never understand how she achieves so much in such simple drawings.

Find out more about Andrew and Chris's awesome work over at

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