WORKING IN A GOLDEN AGE
Stephen Collins is a UK illustrator and cartoonist whose work has appeared in many publications worldwide. His debut graphic novel The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil was published in May 2013 by Jonathan Cape, to widespread critical acclaim in the UK press. He has a weekly comic in The Guardian (Weekend magazine) and a monthly one in Prospect magazine. He has also won several awards, including the AOI Images 2012 Gold Award for editorial illustration, the Jonathan Cape/Observer Graphic Short Story Prize 2010, and The Society for News Design Award of Excellence for Feature Design 2008.
Stephen began his illustration career in 2003, and comics have been the mainstay of his work since around 2005. ‘The Gigantic Beard That Was Evil’, his debut graphic novel, marks a new stage in his development, which he sees as building on the influence he has felt from creators such as Chris Ware, Roald Dahl, Tom Gauld and Shaun Tan.
“The UK comics scene is going through a really exciting period at the moment”, he says. “It’s kind of a golden age here right now, with publishers like Jonathan Cape and Nobrow pushing artists like Isabel Greenberg and Luke Pearson. I feel we’re finally giving the American and European ‘indie’ comics scene a run for their money.”
He is currently working on a book of his newspaper cartoon strips, and is in the very early stages of Likeness, his second graphic novel. He lives in the countryside near to London with his wife, and is hoping to get a garden studio built so he can leave the house a bit more.
Previous clients include The Guardian, The Times, Wall Street Journal, BBC, Deutsche Bank, GQ, La Repubblicca and Stolichnaya vodka.