Jamie Christopher Hewlett (born 3 April 1968) is a British comic book designer and artist. He’s best known because of its co-creator of the comic Tank Girl and co-creator of this virtual band Gorillaz.
Brought up in Horsham, West Sussex, Jamie Hewlett was a pupil at Tanbridge House School, a Regional co-educational comprehensive for students aged 11–16 Decades. He led to the artwork of a road safety campaign that ended up runner-up at a nationwide television competition.
Whilst studying at Northbrook College Worthing, Hewlett, Alan Martin, and fellow pupil Philip Bond had created a fanzine Named Atomtan. This brought him to the attention of Brett Ewins. After leaving college Hewlett and Martin were encouraged by Ewins to make material for a new magazine that he was putting up with Steve Dillon in 1988.
The magazine has been called Deadline and featured a mixture of comic strips made by British founders and articles on music and culture. The strip proved immediately popular and quickly became the most talked about part of Deadline. Hewlett’s eccentric style proved popular, and he started to work with bands such as Senseless Things and Cud providing covers for album releases; he also contributed artwork sporadically to Commodore User magazine.
He also designed decoration for a nightclub called The Factory in Chatsworth Road, Worthing. The decor featured green and red stripes, a wall of blown-up panels out of Tank Girl set against 1970s background, a Ford Escort hung from the ceiling and bathrooms glued with pages from older comic book annuals. The Factory has been renamed and refurbished several times.
By 1992, Hewlett had become a major founder of the comic industry, and among the couple to break into mainstream media. He’d worked with writer Peter Milligan on Hewligan’s Haircut at 2000 AD problems 700 to 707. The show was later compiled into a trade paperback.
Tank Girl was also optioned to be turned into a movie by MGM after being contemplated by, amongst others, Steven Spielberg. It was a commercial and critical failure and has been criticised by enthusiasts who stated it failed to capture the essence of the strip. Hewlett had very little involvement with this film.
He attracted a Tank Girl mini-series for its Vertigo imprint of DC Comics composed by Peter Milligan.
He opened a secondhand clothing store, 49. The shop, in 49 Rowlands Road, Worthing, was managed by girlfriend Jane Oliver, originally a part of Elastica, but that was a short-lived venture and closed within one year.
Hewlett was involved in British bands of this mid-1990s, including displaying a comic strip version of Pulp’s song “Common People”.
A deadline was finally canceled in 1996 due to falling sales in a changing market and Hewlett focused on working in advertising and designs to television, most notably the children’s series SMTV Live, including Ant & Dec. Also, he established the strip ‘Get The Freebies’ published monthly in British style magazine The Face. The tales, all set in London, followed the exploits of Terry Phoo, a homosexual, Buddhist kung-fu law enforcement officer along with his sidekick Whitey Action, an enigmatic young anarchist having a bad attitude, as they tackle their primary adversaries The Freebies Gang of this name. The dynamic between the two heroes was much like that of Tank Girl and her mutant kangaroo boyfriend Booga, together with the episodes from the female protagonist’s point of view. The strip’s primary purpose was for Jamie to vent his spleen from the press idols and tendencies of the day, the story often taking the second position to the jokes.
At the moment, he’d moved into an apartment with Blur’s Damon Albarn following Hewlett split with Oliver, and it was while sharing the flat the pair came up with the idea of Gorillaz, a virtual group. Albarn would function on the audio, although Hewlett would come up with character designs, and both came up with ideas for its members of this band. The initial Gorillaz EP was released in 2000 followed by the first album, Gorillaz at 2001. In 2005, their next full studio album, Demon Days was released.
In January 2006, Hewlett’s artwork for Gorillaz was nominated for the Design Museum’s ‘Designer of the Year’ award. In May 2006, Jamie Hewlett was appointed the Designer of the Year 2006. On 25 May 2006, both Hewlett and Albarn won the joint award for “Songwriters of the Year” in the Ivor Novello Awards.
In 2007, Hewlett and Albarn premiered their first significant work since Gorillaz. Albarn composed the score while Hewlett designed the collection, costumes, and animations. It premiered at the Palace Theatre, Manchester within the Manchester International Festival, on 28 June 2007.
His ‘Get the Freebies’ strip was accommodated by BBC Three to get a pilot entitled Phoo Action, broadcast in February 2008.
Hewlett and Albarn made the animation series that the BBC used to present coverage of the Beijing 2008 Olympics. The sequence titled Journey to the East utilizes the Monkey character from Monkey: Journey to the West.
He married French presenter and celebrity Emma de Caunes in St Paul de Vence on 10 September 2011.
A 2014 Kickstarter campaign raised the capital for a brand new Tank Girl publication 21st Century Tank Girl including co-creators Hewlett, and Martin as well as other artists such as Brett Parson, Warwick Johnson-Cadwell, Philip Bond, Jim Mahfood, Craig Knowles, along with Jonathan Edwards.
In November 2015, Hewlett debuted his first art exhibition named ‘The Suggestionists’ at the Saatchi Gallery in London. The exhibition then made its American debut in the Woodward Gallery in Manhattan in May 2016.