Middlesex University illustration graduate Corban Wilkin has beat off competition from 200 cartoonists to be crowned winner of a national graphic art competition.
The cartoonist and illustrator, who graduated from Middlesex University in 2011, saw his four page graphic short story scoop first place in the 2012 Observer/John Cape/Comica Award. His entry titled 'But I Can't' tells a story of friendship, obsession and alien landings. Corban impressed the judges with his use of colour by combining Indian ink and watercolour, and how he took his characters from childhood through to adulthood in just four pages.
The sought after award came with prize money of £1,000, but often leads to further opportunities.
Middlesex University graduate Corban Wilkin (22) said: “It’s exciting to have won the biggest comic competition in the UK. Our lecturers at Middlesex used to encourage us to enter competitions so I’ve entered the competition for the past four years, but didn’t expect to win as the standard is so high.”
Corban, who has been freelancing in illustration since leaving Middlesex University, has had his creative illustrations used in books, magazines and video games. He is currently working on a graphic novel called ‘Breaker’s End’, which will soon be completed. He hopes that winning the competition will help him get the novel published, after which he’ll make a start on the new one.
“My advice for current illustration students is to take all opportunities offered to you. Keep drawing and just work at it and work at it. Project work proves very valuable once you've graduated, so seize the chance to work on opportunities you get presented with both through university and outside of it,” added Corban.
A selection of prize winners from the past and present including Corban’s work are being exhibited at Foyles bookshop from 4 – 16 November 2012 (Foyles, 113-119 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2).
Photo: Corban Wilkin in front of his artwork