Friday 29 June 2012


Top man and long time supporter ChuckMP tweeted this pic of a very cool one-off phone skin he had made utilising a bit of my scribbling recently - check it out!


Thursday 28 June 2012

Thursday Art: Treehouse

We're going back in time today, with an early bit of concept art from our forthcoming series Freaky Giblets...


Tuesday 26 June 2012

Monday 25 June 2012

Mad Dogs and Autobots! ... and typos...

The latest comic episode of Transformers: Prime begins with a question almost as old as "what came first, the chicken or the egg?": what happens when a powerful US General with a bad temper and a laboratory packed full of experimental robotic fighting suits, blames the loss of his military funding on Prime and the Autobots? 

Okay, so maybe it's not quite as old a question ... but it's extremely intriguing and results in a lot LESS scrambled egg and a lot MORE explosions!  BOOOM!

But while issue 4.10 features all the bone-crunching action from "Mad Dogs and Autobots", unfortunately Starscream appears to have been up to his old tricks again.  The story is attributed to fellow writer, Chris Cooper.  S'not true.  I wrote it.  Blasted Decepticon meddlers....

Visit your local newsagent, supermarket or comics retailer to get your hands on this issue, or better yet, subscribe to the monthly comic HERE (current offer comes with two FREE Transformers figures!) and never miss another slice of the action! 

Friday 22 June 2012

Friday Art Challenge: MONSTER!

A month or so ago, The Daily Telegraph asked us to create a mini "How to draw" excercise as part of the Hay Literature Festival publicity. We thought it would be fun to extend the challenge to you, dear readers! So, have a go at creating a monster the Etherington Brothers' way, send it to us at by MIDNIGHT on SUNDAY 1st JULY and see it here on the blog!

Wednesday 20 June 2012

National Literary Prize Winners Prizes!

Cast your minds back to the end of last year and you may remember Lorenzo and I announcing the winners of a very special competition run by the National Literacy Trust and Renaissance Learning. Primary and Secondary Schools all over the country had been given the chance to enter their own cartoon creations in two categories:

(1) The Primary School challenge was to create a sidekick for our character Dorko.
(2) The Secondary School challenge was to finish a Dorko comic strip story of which we had drawn the first panel.

After some TOUGH judging we finally selected Max Roulstone from Horsendale Primary school in Nottingham and Niamh Sinclair from Sweyne Secondary in Essex. Their prizes were to be two-fold. Firstly, Lorenzo would render their drawings in his own style, for two framed pictures. Then we would travel to the two winning schools and present the students with a special comic workshop. 

Needless to say, we had fun!  I was surprised to discover that Max was taller than me!

Both Sweyne and Horsendale had gone to great lengths ahead of our appearance.  Brilliant displays and a great sense of humour filled the halls of each school.

As usual our focus was on the children's own creations.  In prize winners Max and Niamh, we realised we'd stumbled upon two rare talents.  Here we both are, lost in the pages of Niamh's comics - which were, quite frankly, incredible!  Trust us when we say that this girl is going to be an artist to watch in the future.

Once again, many congratulations to both winners, all the runners up and everyone who entered the competition.  A special thanks to Susie Musgrove from the National Literacy Trust and Gareth Andrews from Renaissance Learning for organising the competition, and to Helen Banks at Sweyne and Heidi Stoneley at Horsendale, for making us feel so welcome.

Tuesday 19 June 2012

Tuesday Art: Stingyness

Our two lead villains in Long Gone Don book one having a little chat...


Monday 18 June 2012

Young Readers are the BEST readers!

Last year we were invited to take part in the Young Readers Book Bash festival in Birmingham, and we had a ball. This year we were lucky enough to be invited back for a highlight show in their fantastic theatre space.

Festival organiser Gena Gaynor had put a superb programme of events together and the attention lavished on the little details were not lost on us. Just cast your eyes over the giant size model of our Baggage bag! And our logo! AND the comic book itself! Wow. Many thanks to Ben Kennedy for these incredible props.

The show was great and afterwards we signed lots of books and got a chance to look at loads of incredible cartoons made by members of the audience. One of the best things about returning to festivals each year is that readers have a chance to show you their own creations, and once again we were dazzled with the results. In order of appearance you can see Eduardo holding up a mighty page of monsters (accompanied by his cheeky little sister) and The Jordan Brothers (see what they did there?) with their, quite frankly AMAZING comics.

Those brothers have a serious future ahead of them. Both can write and draw ... blimey!

Many thanks to Gena and all the Festival staff who helped make our visit so much fun. We look forward to returning in the future!

Friday 15 June 2012

Friday Art: Council of War

Another break-down from Long Gone Don today, enjoy!


Thursday 14 June 2012

Lights, Lorenzo, laughter...

I don't mean that you should laugh at Lorenzo if you see him during daylight. Oh no, no. no!  What I meant to say was that our Big Book Babble show is now online (featuring Lorenzo) and we hope it makes you all laugh!

Click HERE to watch the comedy and nonsense.  It's the only chance you'll ever have to watch my impression of a Monkey directing traffic.  And for those of you eager to know when, precisely, we join the action, well it's 17:51.

Aren't we helpful?

Monday 11 June 2012

Behind the TV Scenes...

It's Monday, it's early, the weather's a bit grey (in England, anyway) so I think we need some exciting news, yes?  Well, in the spirit of getting things off to a good start we are delighted to announce that tomorrow at 11am (GMT) over on the Big Book Babble website, we Etheringtons will be joining children's comedian, all round nice guy and show host, James Campbell, and special guest Mark Walden - equally nice guy and writer of extremely popular, action-packed novels - for a live show all about books and comics and nonsense, and you can watch the entire escapade streamed directly to your computer!


But when I say live, I don't really mean live.  The recording was done in front of a live audience but it actually took place last month at the wonderful Arts Theatre in London's West End.

And, as a special bonus treat ahead of the show dropping online tomorrow, we thought we'd share some sneaky 'behind the scenes' shots from the set.

Oooooh ... it's almost as if you were there!

After filming we retired to a nearby watering hole with James and Mark and the crew, and enjoyed a lengthy laughter-filled interview which will hopefully be appearing in a copy of the Puffin Post magazine soon. More on that at a later date!

It was a brilliant day, and tomorrow you can all watch the end result, simply by clicking HERE!

Thursday 7 June 2012

Wa-HAY! What a week...

Last Wednesday Lorenzo and I hopped on a train bound for the English/Welsh border.  Our destination?  The beautiful market town of Hay-on-Wye.  Our mission?  To perform three shows, over three days to over 1000 children at the 25th annual Hay Festival!

It all kicked off in the BIG tent with the first of our school shows ... which was EPIC!!!

We'd never seen so many enthusiastic children packed into such a ... well ... rather large space actually!  The atmosphere was electric and the students participating were incredible. Funny, funny stuff.

The Telegraph, now sponsoring the festival, were there to report and review on all the action. Their verdict of our shenanigans? - "...the audience, including all the adults present, loved the zaniness of the show."

Lovely.  On Friday we saw a similar sized secondary school group, again in the Big Tent, and then it was on to Saturday and our public show on the Starlight Stage.  This was to be a VERY special event as our Mum and Dad were finally getting to see us perform!

Here they both are looking slightly horrified at the grubby state of a blackboard bearing our name...

We've seen thousands upon thousands of children and adults at festivals and schools all over the country ... but the nerves were jangling at the thought of amusing our parents.  Backstage we had a little quiet moment of reflection...

...and then we were OFF!  I decided to repeatedly let the rest of the audience know where our folks were sitting (just in case they had any complaints about the quality of our jokes), while Lorenzo did his best impression of an astrophysicist giving a lecture.

Afterwards we headed for the Pemberton bookshop tent for a laughter-filled signing session.  And there were bonus treats to be had as we were presented with two mint condition copies of the exclusive DFC comic launch issue - only a hundred or so printed. We almost refused to daub our names on the cover, it was so rare ... but we did anyway!

Our work done, the family retired to the grazing tent for some belated, and much deserved, lunch.  The hospitality at Hay really is second to none.  And Dad agrees!

We were lucky enough to run into lots of incredible authors and celebs during our stay, including Michael Morpurgo, Francesca Simon, Michael Rosen and Chris Evans.  And just as we were heading home, Oliver Jeffers (awesome picture book creator and artist) nabbed me - ME! - to paint a design on a jumper as part of a huge mural.  Lorenzo had already represented us in fine fashion and I can only draw skulls ... so I splodged a skull jumper!  It was NOT my finest work but the children watching got a laugh!

Many thanks to everyone at Random House and the Hay festival for helping to make our stay so enjoyable. We look forward to returning next year with a brand new show!

Wednesday 6 June 2012

Von Doogan's finest on parade!

Atten-SHUN!! It's been a couple of months of solid puzzling for Von Doogan's loyal followers, which means it's role-call for those who went the extra mile and scooped the coveted certificate of Adventuring Excellence!

Puzzle number 13: ‘The Clandestine Culinary Cryptogram’ 
- solved by HENRY ROWNTREE
Puzzle number 14: ‘The Missing Monkier’
Puzzle number 15: ‘The Big Roster Riddle’ 
- solved by EUAN TEBBUTT
Puzzle number 16: ‘The Strongbox Stumper’ 
Puzzle number 17: ‘The Big Plunge’ 
- solved by HARPER LEWIS
Puzzle number 18: ‘The Big Hidden Message’ 
- solved by ANJU BERADI
Puzzle number 19: ‘The Kit Bag Muddle Puzzle’ 
- solved by JACK BUTLER
Puzzle number 20: ‘The Maddening Mirrored Map’ 
- solved by LILAH LEWIS    

Phew! That's a lot of puzzling heroes! Make sure YOU keep up with Doogan as he continues his adventure against the mysterious captain Nemo, every week only in The Phoenix!


Tuesday 5 June 2012

Long Gone Don done GONE!

All good things must take a break every once in a while, in order to return bigger, brighter and better than before!  And so last week, with that in mind, the first Long Gone Don epic tale came to a close in the pages of The Phoenix weekly comic. And what a finale it was!

Just take a look at this shot of General Spode's cavalry in action!

Thrilling stuff indeed!

But fear not, friends of Don, the little white-haired hero will return later in the year in a brand new adventure that will make his current time spent in the underworld of Broilerdoom seem like a teddy bears picnic!  Be sure to keep an eye on the blog in the coming months as we'll be teasing you with advance sneak peaks from the book!