The story of Shaun the Sheep 1

The story of Shaun the Sheep

In 2015 I was contacted by Aardman who wanted me to cover a Shaun the Sheep statue in postage stamps for a charity auction. I submitted some designs and the commission was agreed. A short while later, a van drove 150 miles from Bristol to Derbyshire to deliver the “naked” Shaun sculpture. Unfortunately, the sculpture did not fit through my front door, nor through the side gate. So the surprisingly patient delivery men loaded it back into the van and took it back to Bristol.


After some measurements were taken, of both Shaun and various possible routes into my house, another attempt was made. But first I had to talk to my neighbour. I started by explaining that I had a rather large and awkward delivery that I couldn’t get into my house, and asked if I could go through his garden. Initially he simply asked why I had ordered something that didn’t fit into my house. He knew nothing of my stamp art, so I started with, “Well, you know Wallace and Gromit…?”. I have to admit that it took a while to explain, but eventually he was pleased to help. This time Shaun was successfully delivered down the side of my neighbour’s house, through a recently removed fence panel, past a specially pruned tree and in through the patio doors at the back of the house. He sat rather awkwardly and completely in the way in the middle of living room for a couple of months.

A short while later, I got a delivery of unused postage stamps direct from Royal Mail with a street value of over £10,000. I spent several weeks covering Shaun in stamps, which was something of a challenge as I had never undertaken a 3-dimensional work in stamps. At least using new, self-adhesive stamps saved time where I usually have to apply glue to each stamp. Once he was complete, he went back through the neighbour’s garden to the van to go back to Bristol.

When Aardman received the completed work, they decided to call it “Frank”. By coincidence I already had a work called Frank. He was put on display in a shopping centre in Bristol and then in London, took part in an exhibition in Bristol and was then sold in a charity auction. The last picture is me with Nick Park of Aardman at the “Shaun in the City” exhibition.

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