Crouch End gets cartoon makeover by Beano artist - who’s only 15

Topsfield Parade by Zoom Rockman

Topsfield Parade by Zoom Rockman - Credit: Archant

Not many 15-year-olds get their own art exhibition but then not many have a regular cartoon strip in The Beano or have published their own comic since the age of eight.

Banners, Park Road, by Zoom Rockman

Banners, Park Road, by Zoom Rockman - Credit: Archant

GCSE student Zoom Rockman is something of a celebrity around his native Crouch End whose landmarks have inspired a clutch of his artworks.

Now an exhibition at The Queens pub showcases both his Skanky Pigeon Beano strip and views of N8, including the pub itself and the clocktower Rockman, who is a member of the Mayor’s Fund Youth Board, this year donated one of his artworks to the Big Draw charity auction. Appearing alongside art by Hockney and Blake, it raised £850.

He told the Ham&High Broadway earlier this year how he takes photos, sketches the scene with pencil and ink and then scans it into his computer, where he adds the colour using a digital drawing board.

“I like drawing my area,” he said. “I literally draw every brick. I have drawn so many of the buildings where I live, it feels like I’m walking in a comic book.


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“It’s a strange feeling. I have some pictures of Crouch End from years ago and a lot of it looks the same. Old buildings have more details and I like to put detail into my drawings.”

Zoom, who cites The Beano, Father Ted and Blackadder as inspirations for his very British humour, likes capturing the contrast between old and new, such as the modern Dixy Chicken shop near the Broadway, with the building still displaying its original construction date, 1825.

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And he believes it is quirks that add character to his drawings.

“A cartoonist once taught me there is no such thing as a straight line in real life.”

The exhibition is part of the Crouch End Festival but runs at the Queens until August 10 with some of Zoom’s artworks on sale.

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