Morus Monthly: Drawing Dogs with Tom Bingham
Not long ago Morus was lucky enough to receive his own pet portrait by the talented Manchester based illustrator Tom Bingham. Sitting pride of place in Morus' workshop den, the pen and ink piece is a detailed portrait, which perfectly captures our cheeky little shop dog.
In this post, we chat to Tom about his love for drawing dogs, delve into his pencil case and hear about what it's like to be part of the creative scene in Manchester.
We love the black and white portrait of Morus! Tell us about the evolution of your work and how you came about doing pet portraits.
I have worked as a commercial illustrator for a long time and I reached the point where I wanted to create more personal work with more creative freedom. Alongside art, dogs are my biggest passion and I have so much love for them. I found myself creating lots of artwork featuring dogs so I decided to set up an Instagram account @tomdrawsdogs as an outlet for all of this and people seemed to really like what I was doing. I got requests off people asking if I could draw their dogs and it just went from there. I set up an Etsy shop and started doing pet portrait commissions and now I even offer custom brooches of your puppers!
What are the most used items in your pencil case?
I’m a big fan of Indian Ink. Its so versatile, I use it for most drawings! Whether I’m using my brushes to paint looser work or using a dip pen to create more detailed line drawings, such as my portrait of the lovely Morus. Although my inks are my trusty go to’s I try to experiment and work in lots of different mediums, so I have to have quite a large pencil case!
What’s your favourite item that you’ve bought or swooned over at Fred Aldous?
I just bought the Pentel Fude Brush Pen and Im in love with it. It gives such nice brush strokes that I haven’t been able to achieve with other pens before. Its just like using a real brush!
Where do you like to do your work?
I’m quite a homebody so I do most of my work from home where I can sit at my desk and listen to true crime podcasts while doodling dogs all day.
Tell us about the creative scene in Manchester - how do you remain inspired?
Manchester has always had a great creative scene, just step outside the front door of Fred Aldous and you’ll see some lovely street art around Stevenson square. There's also lots of art fairs throughout the year to check out, which is a great opportunity to mix with the local talent or even get involved. I get inspired when I see all the hard work and passion people put into their art and it pushes me to make more.
What advice would you give to aspiring illustrators?
Become obsessed with it. I think you need a lot of passion in illustration. I find that when you are enjoying it you tend to make your best work. So make a nice space for you to create your work, stay zen and maybe adopt a dog to sit with you to keep you company :-)
If you're an artist or Fred Aldous customer and would like to capture Morus, get in touch to see how you can be featured in the next Morus Monthly!