Michael is originally from England and now lives in Pattaya. Although many may not recognize his name, most will recognize his initials, MJB, as they appear on the cartoons about living or visiting Thailand that he draws for the Pattaya
Cartoonist Mike Baird said he got his start at a young age. He said his older brother did drawings and he took some to school and showed his classmates. His classmates liked them so much, they wanted to
buy them. So, Michael took them back home, drew copies, and brought them back to school for sale.
Michael said he first got started in his art by using the scraperboard, which he explained was using a solid black ink on top of white chalk
board and then you scratch out the black ink to make a drawing. Subsequently, he got into using paints. All of this was done as a hobby.
He got into it as a vocation when he went to work for a company that did large outdoor advertising
As time went on, he learned various techniques from other artists employed by the company. Early in his career, he traveled extensively as a touch up artist. Since the displays used oil paint, the panels often stuck together.
When they were put up for display, they were smudged and needed to be touched up.
At one point, he said his company became aware of a company in Barcelona, Spain, that was doing excellent displays using air brush painting. He was sent
to Barcelona to look at how they were doing it and brought the technique back for use by his company. He said it was hard to believe that one could do such quality work using an air brush. Some of his air brush art-work was a sixty by fifteen foot display.
Michael commented that he had always been impressed by the art work of Norman Rockwell and started making copies of his work. This led to a side career as a copyist; not only of works by Rockwell, but other famous artists as well. He said
he became one of England’s top copy artists painting murals, portraits, landscapes, and masterpieces. He said he got into doing murals by happenstance. One day he was driving when a Rolls Royce flashed its lights at him. The man in the Rolls then asked
him if he could paint a mural in his bedroom - Michael’s picture of the mural hand painted onto wardrobe doors was quite stunning.
However, Michael said that he did his first cartoon after retiring to
Thailand. He said he was approached by a magazine publisher and asked to draw some cartoons. His first efforts were in black and white. Over time, he improved his drawings and started doing them in color. These cartoons most often reflect life in Thailand
- the humorous side of it. Michael said most of his inspiration comes just from sitting and watching what goes on around him.
Michael says that moving to Thailand was the best thing he ever did.
To contact Mike - please
E-Mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org