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Train stops inspire fun in ugly society'

PUBLISHED: 16:52 18 March 2009 | UPDATED: 16:19 25 August 2010

INSPIRATION: Dean Beattie’s  Neighbours.

INSPIRATION: Dean Beattie's Neighbours.

AN ILLUSTRATOR who left his office job to poke fun at the ugly side of society has used south-east London as inspiration for his art.

AN ILLUSTRATOR who left his office job to 'poke fun at the ugly side of society' has used south-east London as inspiration for his art.

Dean Beattie, 35, from Maidstone, visited Welling and Woolwich on his way by train to London to get his inspiration for some of his characters.

The former Plumstead resident said that he goes for "easily recognisable" characters that are often spotted in Kent and south-east London.

He said: "I like to poke fun at the ugly side of society. It might make it easier to take if you can make fun of it. I hate the fact that sometimes it feels hostile on the train on the way home so making it into a bit of fun makes it a bit more lighthearted."

Mr Beattie packed in his full-time job to go to University in Maidstone to complete an illustration degree and, after graduating in 2007, is now carving out his new career.

Saying he has no regrets about this decision, he added: "When I finished sixth-form I didn't get into art school and the first job that came along I took and it became easy to stay in the job, even though I was unhappy.

"I knew it could go on for ever if I didn't do something about it."

Now, Mr Beattie has been commissioned by the Student Pocket Guide for a book telling stories of people's worst first dates.

His picture The Night Train depicting two youths on a train at Lewisham station is also to be used in the Association of Illustrators Images 33 book due to be published this summer.

kate.mead@archant.co.uk

To see more of Dean Beattie's illustrations, go to www.deanbeattie.com

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