Tuesday 3 November 2009


Hello, hello.

I have recently become a little bit of a liar, all these promises of updates 'later' and then later never seems to arrive. But despair no longer, the images I have been promising (bar one) are featured in this blog post.

First up is my image for The Ride Journal, a cycling magazine with an emphasis on storytelling and experience swapping nestling amongst beautiful design and evocative illustrations. Happily I was asked to contribute an illustration to the Journal to accompany an article called 'Pedal to Enlightenment' which told the tale of the writer's fight through the pain barrier to a zen like feeling of calm as he rode the roads of California.

So the art director asked me to do something a little more abstract then my usual work, focusing on my love of colour and strong compositions to convey the feelings referenced in the article. I had great fun doing this and was really pleased with the end result. It was nice to do something a bit more experimental and I got to play around with all of the textures that I collect on a daily basis to build up hundreds of layers which then come together to create the overall image.

This image will feature in The Ride Journal III, which is launched this week at the Pebbledash Gallery in Stoke Newington (London) on Friday at a Private View of the 116 TO SEA exhibition. To quote the site 116 TO SEA is "an exhibition of photography by Joe McGorty in collaboration with The Ride Journal. The Dunwich Dynamo, the annual 116 Mile all night bike ride from London to Suffolk coast, took place on the 4th of July 2009 the Saturdays nearest full moon. Joe McGorty's distinctive photographic style captures the spirit and fell of the unique ride."

I'm looking forward to the Private View and will report back with some pictures (promise). If you have a moment over the coming week the exhibition should be worth a look as Joe McGorty's work is really beautiful.

On a slightly different tip, the image below is my recent-ish one for The Sunday Herald about teen drinking. It talks about the contradiction between adult attitudes to teen drinking and their own vastly different actions, which set a bad example, and the lack of understanding of the serious effects of teen drinking on the still developing brain. This was more of a classic Jemillo illustration, lots of figures and a strong narrative underpinning an image of composite scenes around the same theme, all combining to convey the contradiction visually (I hope). So in a nutshell we see the adult hands appearing to toast the drunken antics of the youths on the right hand side. Colour wise it is a lot darker then a lot of my work, deliberately, to show the behaviour that tends to occur mostly in the evening and also to suggest the negative implications of such actions.

I also spent a great deal of time creating artwork about Washington for the Urban Land Institute in America, but alas I am still unable to publish this image online as the work is not yet in use given that it advertises the 2010 ULI conference and the 2009 event has not yet taken place! But the minute I get the nod I'll pop it up here. I do have roughs for two alternative ideas that I will publish when I pull them together.

Finally then I have added two of the three images that have been selected for Images 34.

These are 'PDA', the image from the 'We Have A Nice Day' project that responded to the statement:

"My life is a public spectacle.
Enjoy the show.
I’ll be here all week."

The second image is 'Storm', also from We Have A Nice Day and this image responded to:

"Close atmosphere today.
Need the rain to breakthrough.
Heady, clammy, intense air.

Storm on in."

Many thanks to Michelle Bower aka Bowerbird, regular commentator on this blog, friend and collaborator on the We Have A Nice Day project. Her clever, thought-provoking or inspirational words were an instrumental part in my selection for Images 34, as without them I would not have had the starting point to create some of my favourite pieces of work, so thanks to her.

Finally the third selected image was my Harry Patch illustration for the Independent. I was really pleased that this image was selected as again it is another of my favourites and also talks about a serious subject matter, which I think is important to recognise in Illustration awards as sometimes the serious gets overlooked for the shiny, showy or shallow and it is nice to see something less 'trendy' be recognised. Especially when it's my work, ha ha. Anyway the Harry Patch image is already on the blog, so if you wish to see it please scroll down!

That's it for today. Phew. As mentioned on yesterday's posts the website has been updated so if you want to see all my work in one place please visit

Have a great Tuesday!

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