Raymond Briggs' Workspace

I am a big Raymond Briggs fan. His comics were some of the first ones that I read; Other than the newspaper ones. Here is a look at his creative space and some insights in his writing process.

"On the board is a spread from the book I've been working on for the past two years. It is about old age and death, and if I ever manage to finish it before I die, it will be called Time For Lights Out.

The kind of work I do, which involves writing, designing and illustrating, needs a lot of space. This room is about 14 x 28 feet and is nowhere near big enough. This picture shows just a corner of it. There is also an ex-billiards table covered in equipment which the lucky scribbly-tappy writer does not need.

First you write it, then you design the typography and lay out the hand lettering. This gives you some idea of the space you are going to need, so you can then design the format, the pagination and the grid. This will show what space is left for illustrations. You light-box off the grid on to 50 or more sheets of watercolour paper and paste up the type and lettering. This gives you the layout. Now you can start.

One page shows a photograph of my Dad I took shortly before he died. He was dosing himself with Rennies for painful indigestion. A few weeks later he died of stomach cancer. I'm going to stick on a Rennies packet and also hope to stick on the Rennies themselves to save the fiddle-arse of drawing them. Has it come to this, drawing Rennies? For this I went to the Slade?

There is a good view across 15 miles of the Sussex Weald to Ashdown Forest. It is beautiful, but I also enjoy seeing the planes stoogeing around, queueing to get into the Gatwick hellhole. It's comforting to feel you're not shut up in one of them breathing in other people's germs and smells.

So this is where I try and work in the rare gaps between interviews about The S*****n. Three decades of that is enough. Time for lights out."
-Raymond Briggs



  1. have you heard the panel borders podcast with briggs? its pretty damn good.

  2. No I haven't heard it will have to look it up! Thanks


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