Between 1995 and 2000, a mysterious pair of silhouetted figures were the outlet for the more surreal impulses in my brain. Mr Clarke (in the top hat) and Mr Miller (in the hugely extended top hat) were created in an uninspiring German lesson, scribbled in the back of my exercise book and hastily named after two fictional characters from an oral exam paper.
At first I could only envisage them walking down silhouetted staircases, but soon after came more extensive outings showcasing Clarke and Miller's guides to supermarkets, marathons, bungee-jumping, film-making, letter collecting and their seemingly never-ending world tours. Accompanying them was an ensemble cast featuring Mike Flowers (rooting the origins of Clarke and Miller firmly in late-1995: the Mike Flowers Pops Orchestra had recently had a hit with their easy-listening version of 'Wonderwall'), Bert from No.34, a man who looked like Elvis but wasn't Elvis and later on a strange bespectacled, tracksuited man (with awkward goatee beard) called Andrew, who, unnervingly, always stared out at the reader regardless of what position his body was in.
So, as a nostalgic celebration, here's a bundle of vintage Clarke & Miller strips, clippings, scans and plans that at least proves that I can do more than speech bubbles. Apologies for some of the strips looking a bit faded, some of this inkwork is 15 years old, but you can always squint, can't you?
Presenting to the internet for the very first time: CLARKE AND MILLER!!!!! RAWR!
To give you a brief idea of the variety of activities Clarke & Miller got up to, here's a few odds and ends from my sketch pads of the time. Don't expect any overall coherence or storyline to these strips; they're from all over the place, so think of it as a grab-bag of C & M...