WorkshopKatie Kerr

Skull Sessions: I Can’t Draw Horses with Toby Morris

WorkshopKatie Kerr
Skull Sessions: I Can’t Draw Horses with Toby Morris
Photo by Gui Martinez

Photo by Gui Martinez

Skull Sessions are the anti-seminar; a magical series of intimate full-day workshops with leading makers who maintain authentic, alternative practices in the arts and creative industries.

No powerpoint presentations, portfolio talks or stuffy conference rooms — just insightful, poetic lessons from those on the fringe of their field.

For our second Skull Session, we welcome illustrator, designer, comic book maker, rad dad and sometimes-musician Toby Morris for an intensive illustration workshop, ‘I Can’t Draw Horses’.

Perhaps best known for his Pencilsworld series and compelling graphic novels, Toby’s Skull Session will look at why ‘perfection sucks’ and how mastering your craft is no substitute for having good ideas.

Using case studies from his own portfolio as well as the wider cultural context, Toby will cover the Garfield principle, the importance of going beyond decoration and the beauty of mistakes. Discussing the fragile balance between commercial and personal projects, he’ll also divulge his secrets on how to build a career as a full-time illustrator.

In the afternoon, participants will put down the books and pick up the pencils as Toby guides a fast and loose drawing session, encouraging participants to actively reflect on the morning’s lessons and draw with personality, not perfection.

The session will conclude with a field trip to Toby’s studio at Inky Palms where participants will transform their work into a series of mini-zines using a risograph printer.

Interlaced with historical and cultural references, critical discussions, whimsical moments, communal eating, field trips, and unexpected guests, the workshop is designed to bring out the best in both practitioner and participant.

10am til 5.30pm, Saturday November 25th at Strange Haven, 281 Karangahape Road.

See why Toby can't draw horses here.

Feedback from the day:

"The approach taken was perfect, the atmosphere was relaxed and everyone there was super nice, friendly and approachable."

"Toby's insights and advices were invaluable!"

"The discussion at the beginning of the day was awesome, It was great to hear about Toby's philosophy towards illustration."

"All four 'points' of Toby's talk were awesome, very valuable indeed."

"Food was great! Appreciated having bagels, fruit & coffee available throughout the day."

"Lots of favourites... hearing stuff from Toby that I haven't heard before. The risograph machine. Meeting the other workshop participants. Listening to Toby and Barry chatting away while we worked on our 'zines. Having a chance to have a beer afterwards. The Prince and Bowie playlist."

Skull Sessions is presented by Samuel Walsh and Katie Kerr of Strange Haven.