Professionally speaking, it all started with this book. When I was pitching it to publishing companies I nicknamed it Manga In Stitches, because whenever I described the concept, editors burst out laughing (or, for those unversed in British slang, were ‘in stitches’.) At last I met an editor who took the idea seriously. (Thank you, brave, daft, brilliant Tim Pilcher.) The book came out, and stitchers all over the world embraced the Manga Cross-Stitch concept.
I’ve workshopped Manga Cross-Stitch in Europe and America, and I haven’t found anyone who can’t learn the basics of how to stitch in a few minutes. Quite a few people have said that the book has a clear, accessible teaching style – it aims to help new stitchers get started with minimum fuss, and explain some of the concepts behind the visual grammar of Japanese animation and comics. Anyone can design and create their own unique manga-inspired works – I can show you how, but the art you make will be unique.
I was having so much fun with the book and the workshops that I wanted to go on making charts from Steve’s art and my own, so SMK (Stitches by McCarthy & Kyte) has been beavering away on new charts, some of which may see the light of day soon.