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So here are some sketches I did of Cast-Iron Billy, trying to get an idea of how to draw him and display his character.

Originally, I thought I could compare the real Cast-Iron Billy to how I imagined him to be based purely on his name. However, I think that I should have done that before researching his life, as now that I’ve researched him my ideas are going to be influenced by that research, so I wouldn’t be able to do an apt comparison anymore.

The difficulty I had here was that his life wasn’t great; in fact it was pretty terrible, purely because he had the misfortune of being lower-class in Victorian London. This clashes somewhat with the brief which wants a poster that is “colourful, inspiring and celebrates a vibrant, multi-layered London”.

At this point I felt that it was too late to change topic, so I persevered with it, and tried to find what made Cast-Iron Billy happy (look at the brain-storms at the bottom of this post). I found that he enjoyed city life, his old patrons and the races between rival omnibus companies. The idea of racing omnibuses appealed to me, so that became my new focus, which I will talk about in the next post.Image

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^SO SADImage

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^Life just gets worse and worse for him the more I draw.

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^ He looks too much like an upper class man. More than likely it’s because of his pose, with his nose high in the air

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Image^ Information found from this interview, which is the only documentation of Cast-Iron Billy’s life that I can find: http://www.victorianlondon.org/publications/thomson-22.htm

(One thing which annoys me about the interview is “His first wife was for many years an invalid, and a drain on his resources” which just feels horribly dismissive towards her. I get that it’s from a Victorian perspective, but it just frustrates me so much)

All London Transport Museum project related posts:

Third year Project 1: London Transport Museum Brief
Cast Iron Billy
London Transport Museum Competition Progress 1
London Transport Museum Progress 2
London Transport Museum Progress 3
London Transport Museum Progress 4
London Transport Museum Progress 5
London Transport Museum Progress 6 – Final Submission
London Transport Museum Progress 7 – Epilogue and Reflective Summary

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