Steel Skin and the Sea

I’ve spent the last week putting my studio back together after a great week at Creative Up North working on a piece that will be on permanent display at their Creative Hub in North Shields.

It’s always good to get out of your comfort zone and painting in public, on an unfamiliar, 3D surface of bizarre proportions certainly pushed me out of my trusted old habits. It took me a few days to get used to the way the oil paint reacted to the primed steel surface and the 5 day deadline was looming very large but in the end everything came together and I am very pleased with the result. The bar will now sit during Russel Coleman‘s ‘Cooking with Concrete’ exhibition before getting a final check and being sealed with a protective clear coat.

I’d like to thank the attentive attendees of the talks I gave during the week, including artists from the North Tyneside Art Studio. The piece I started during my ‘Painting out of Chaos’ demonstration is now set up in my studio and I will posting progress shots here and on social media as it develops.

You can find a lot more photos of my week over at the Creative Up North Facebook page.

New work available

In the run up to Christmas, we’ve been hard at work at the studio and have produced three new works, available to purchase as limited edition giclée prints through my Etsy shop.  If you are looking for something a little different for a present this year, take a look at the work on offer as soon as possible to make sure you can order in time for Christmas.



On the move

visions over the tyne

After nearly a year of juggling a day job, work as an artist and time with my family, we decided that it was time to make a change.  I am pleased to announce that the dreams of ego family will be moving to Tyneside, where I will be setting up studio to take my art practice full time.

There are many things that we will miss about Cambridge, especially the friends and family that we will be leaving behind, but I am looking forward to being able to commit more time to developing my work and reaching new audiences.

This means that commissions are closed until the end of October while we move and I set up a new space in North Shields, however you can expect the drought of updates to end very soon, with more blog posts, new artwork for sale and a new site design.

In the mean time, keep your eyes peeled for announcements about Cthulhu: Deep Down Under, an anthology of antipodean horror, including my full page illustration for a tale by Barry Radburn.  Australian fans of all things Lovecraft should head over to Melbourne’s Armageddon Expo for a first glimpse at this excellent project.

Time to Talk

Time to change | surreal sketch by Michael Cunliffe


A new surreal piece, resulting from a quick sketch made in a café. Its a personal piece worked up in Corel Painter 12, with heavy influence from traditional surrealist paintings. You can see the original sketch and a process piece below.

Taut - digital painting by Michael Cunliffe

Pencil sketch by Michael Cunliffedigitally coloured pencil sketch by Michael Cunliffe


Just a little personal piece I’ve been working on, developed from an automatic drawing.


A long delay in posts again despite my previous good intentions, but I have been busy working on various projects. Until the others are ready to show, here are my entries for Inkygoodness fantastic Beermat Character Competition, which judging by the heaps of envelopes showing up at their door has been a huge success.

Each of the following started out life as plain old beermats, something which seems to be a rarity in pubs these days. Enjoy.

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Hot on the heels of last week, here’s a much earlier posting of this weeks Illustration Sketch Friday, ‘puzzled’.


Its Illustration Sketch Friday time!

With work commitments squeezing my time, I’m taking a step back with Illustration Friday and you can expect to see some sketches and quick line drawings coming up over the next few weeks. So lets kick that off with this week’s “Vocal”


Its Illustration Friday again! On a Tuesday… well, you get the idea.

A more involved response to this week’s ‘Fluid’.