52 pages, A4, $16.00, by Trevor Dickinson, newcastleprods(at)gmail.com +++ www.newcastleproductions.com.au
I recently wrote a review of one of Trevor's zines, it was in a pile Sticky had sent me. Called Pictures Of Me By My Children, I called it a "vanity project", and the review ended with the word "Fail." My problem with it was the lack of context. All these drawings of some bloke, but who was he? There was one picture of him hooked up to some kind of hospital monitor, but no explanation of why he was there. Well, I'm glad I wrote that review because a few weeks later I got an email from Trevor asking if it was OK to reprint it in an annual he was putting together. Next thing, I roll up at the Canberra zine fair last weekend and three tables down is Trevor! He introduced himself and gave me a copy of this Newcastle Annual.
Trevor is from England and has been living in Newcastle, Australia since at least January 2009 when he began drawing local buildings, signs, and other subjects that interested him. He started this as a way to improve his drawing skills, but admits that it has become an obsession. The drawing that set him off on this obsession is included here - a 'Men, "Do It" Longer' billboard in Broadmeadow. There are drawings of neglected bus stops, church signs, buildings that have since been demolished, (Newcastle icon) Super Hubert's 1977 Toyota Crown, electricity pylons, showbag contents, and the drawings are great. I really loved the comments for each drawing too.
One of the greatest things in here is the part about his 100 Letterboxes of Newcastle project. Trevor's been walking the streets of Newcastle hunting down letterboxes that have something special about them, photographing them then drawing them. The first issue (Letterboxes 1-25) is available now.
Trevor also includes pages of his sketchbook from when he was in hospital. He went for a stress test, was admitted to emergency, and came out with a stent in his coronary artery.
This book is so freaking awesome. The price tag may make you think twice, but it's really worth every cent.