Kyle McDonald, Illustrator

Kyle McDonald is an artist. He creates because he’s creative. See, Kyle has these feelings; whether it’s love, angst or sadness, Kyle creates art that describes how he feels inside.

This is one of his latest pieces:

Kyle's poster.

“Kyle is one of the best and most successful illustrators currently operating in Leeds. He regularly receives international commissions and has previously illustrated posters for Flight of The Conchords, Bon Iver, Deerhoof, Sonic Youth and Mogwai. While similar illustrators tend to use vector techniques, Kyle opts to use mostly traditional methods, instead labouring with pencil and marker pen. He creates surrealist illustrations featuring skulls, monsters, beards and animals, drawn with vibrant colours, smooth lines and a high attention to detail.”

Now, those are the same words that I used to describe a very similar illustrator several months ago. That illustrator is called Drew Millward, but because Kyle’s work is so similar to Drew’s, I thought I’d just replace Drew’s name with Kyle’s. To give you an indication of just how similar their work is, type Drew’s name in Google Images and see what comes up.

Drew's remarkably similar poster.

Now, I’m not necessarily saying that Kyle McDonald has simply taken Drew’s Faith No More poster, changed the text and then passed it off as his own, but…well, that’s exactly what I’m saying because that’s blatantly what he’s done.

But to be fair, this could just be a big misunderstanding. Perhaps he’ll at least credit Drew for the poster, which judging from how detailed the piece is, must have taken a fairly long time to make.

"did this and it's been posted all over the complex and main st for a while now."


Shit, he almost forgot to post that poster that he didn’t create. What a shame it would have been if he had forgotten to post the poster that he saved to his computer, dropped into Photoshop and changed the text. What a waste of hard work that would have been. If you’re going to plagiarise somebody’s work you’ve got to remember to tell people about it, preferably while bragging.

Yeah, Kyle’s kind of a big deal. His work has been posted all over the complex and Main Street, yet despite this, he still interacts with his fans, the little people. It sure was sweet of them to comment. Kyle gets a lot of compliments from people on his work. It’s not like he just knocked that up in Adobe Illustrator in a few seconds, you know. No, Kyle “opts to use mostly traditional methods, instead labouring with pencil and marker pen.”

I wonder what went through his mind when he stumbled across Drew’s poster.

“Wow, that’s a cool design,” he might have thought to himself. “I wish I could draw and, you know, do things and stuff, but unfortunately I’ve been blessed with surprisingly few talents in life. If only there was some way I could pass this work off as my own. Perhaps, if I were to do that, people would like me and find me ever so slightly more tolerable. Perhaps they’d genuinely like me! My father when he berated me for trying on my mother’s clothes that time, all those people who described me as a dense mass of reprehensible douchebag, myself when I’m confronted with my own reflection — perhaps by telling people that I made this I might be able to correct those things somehow.”

And so then Kyle saved the image to his desktop and began perfecting his already completed poster. First, he began by removing the text and then minutes later he was ready to add his own unique touch to the poster, arguably the best bit. The text, Kyle thought, was perfect. Drew’s poster had stubbornly failed to promote what Kyle wanted it to promote, but Kyle had changed all that. He stood back for a moment to observe his creation and saw that it was good.

Just as a young Picasso scribbled a bit of crappy text at the bottom of one of Rembrandt’s self-portraits and then led people to believe that he had painted it, Kyle had adapted somebody else’s work and made it a masterpiece.

Kyle McDonald, artist and visionary.

Weeks later and Kyle had received great acclaim for his work, specifically the text at the bottom. Men admired him and women wanted to make sweet yet unsurprisingly derivative love to him. Kyle had hit the big time, but soon he started to think that perhaps ripping off Drew’s work wasn’t quite enough.

“Perhaps,” he pondered, “I could steal adapt the work of other artists. Magritte’s The Son of Man? Dali’s The Persistence of Memory? The entire discography of the ’80 hard rock supergroup Damn Yankees? The complete works of poet Allen Ginsberg? People will ask me, ‘Did you write this, Kyle? It’s very good’ and I will respond ‘Howl? Sure, I wrote that I did. That was me that was.'”

Everything Kyle saw after that moment, he claimed as his own, including stars, certain breeds of dogs (the good ones), buttonless boxer shorts, the atomic bomb and rain. Some doubted Kyle when he claimed to have given birth to himself, suggesting that giving birth to oneself is a scientific impossibility, but those people were ultimately won over by Kyle’s convincing argument, “I did this…”

Kyle was in fact so busy claiming to have done things that he almost forgot to notify other people of fact that he’d given birth to himself.

Kyle also chose to believe that he appeared in the horrendous 2002 comedy film Boat Trip. Who are we to argue with him? There’s his face on the body of Cuba Gooding Jr.. He, I believe, came up with the idea for the boat part of the film as well as the bit where the boat goes on a trip. Kyle also distributed the film, by hand, and filmed it using a camera, which he claims to have invented.

He was the one who came up with the idea of a homophobe being stuck on a gay cruise, he claims.

Here’s Kyle performing his hit song “Zoom” with his band, Fat Larry’s Band.

Kyle fronting '80s soulsters Fat Larry's Band.

And here’s Kyle on the cover of his 1966 album Kyle on Kyle.

Kyle on Kyle

Here he is during his short time as the drummer of the popular ’60s rock group The Beatles, which he spawned from his urinary tract shortly after finishing his controversial novel Naked Lunch.

Sgt. Kyle's Lonely Hearts Club Band, obviously.

It’s easy to describe Kyle as a pathetic sociopath who has no qualms about taking the work of an already established illustrator and pretending that he has the talent and drive to produce anything remotely creative. It’s easy to call Kyle McDonald a vacuous twat who was born without the part of the brain that processes shame, a sack of talentless crap who’s been forced to live a lie due to his obvious lack of skills and pathetic desire to receive meaningless comments from people who aren’t aware of how odious he really is.

It’s easy to call him all of those things, but really, you’ve just got to question the mentality of somebody like Kyle McDonald. How can anybody with an appreciation for art believe that plagiarism, especially on this level, is in anyway acceptable? And how can anybody be this fucking stupid?

Congratulations. I look forward to seeing more of your work soon, Kyle.

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