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“One of the things common to all my pieces here is that they were created spontaneously, often with little idea how they would turn out. This isn’t true of most of my work as a cartoonist for Good Weekend magazine and as a creator of picture books – which is often painstakingly planned out and carefully laboured over.

The LA sketch, for instance, was an attempt to quickly capture the LA outside my first-floor motel window in West Hollywood. For colour I used whatever was at hand – torn newspaper, brochures and even grass from the sidewalk below for the green.

Likewise, the Takahe (rare flightless bird) was made from cutting up tourist brochures for Fiordland (NZ) while sitting on the couch of a holiday house in the area. The animal ensemble was made while trying out the colours of a $2 pack of textas. And so on …

No matter the content I always aim (struggle!) for some kind of beauty. Quite early on at art school it seemed to me that this was the ultimate challenge. Is there ever a reason why something made need not be beautiful?”

Contact Tohby: www.tohby.com