This was all thanks to Ricky Gervais, not sure if you've heard of him but he's a little known actor and comedian, check his account on twitter (@rickygervais) he could really do with a few more followers. (the poor fella only has 4,192, 062 at the time of typing this blog)
Many of you may know that I like to draw group caricatures of celebrities, from tv shows to movies, if the face works I'll doodle it. So I had produced a little caricature of the stars of Derek, Ricky's latest hilarious and heartwarming creation set in a retirement home.
As always with these doodles, I tweeted it across to Ricky, not really expecting a reply.
Within almost no time at all I had a lovely little reply simply saying, "Great Work!"
It's a simply wonderful thing to receive nice comments about your work, but little was I prepared for the power Ricky's words have. My twitter "interaction" panel went insane. Tweets came through like crazy with all sorts of lovely peeps saying how much they liked my work and this was such a huge boost to my confidence. I began saying thank you to each of them and realised this was a futile task, so opted for broader "I would like to thank everyone.." messages.
I quickly became friends with @tadpole_hitler, a twitter user who runs a Derek fan art site at www.tadpolehitler.com, who wrote a lovely little article about my work and even was so nice as to put an advert for my site on their home page.
I had originally loved the character of Vicky, played by Holli Dempsey but had not included her in the pic as at the time of drawing it she appeared to be a one episode character. But while I was receiving these comments she appeared in another episode and Holli herself left some lovely tweets about the pic. And so it was destined to be.. Vicky appeared in the picture, along with an ornamental frog.
And the flattery continued. In all my years of caricaturing I've never received such appreciation for my work and it was a truly flattering experience. Just when my head couldn't swell any further I received comments not only from Kerry Godliman who plays Hannah in the series, but also from Charlie Hanson, the series producer.
The whole crazy experience had a great finale for me when I realised a life long dream as I got to work as a caricaturist on the set of a movie.
It just so happened that Mr Gervais was on set too so I left a couple of prints with the crew for him.
To make sure he got it I tweeted,
"@rickygervais there's an A3 copy of the Derek caricature waiting for you somewhere on set, hopefully you'll get it."
and I received the reply.
"@richnairn Got it! Amazing. Thank you."
For a show that references how nice people can be, Derek has sure lived up to it's words.
Thank you everyone for a truly brilliant and flattering few weeks!