Kickstarter: My Great Grandfather, the Alien


I launched a Kickstarter for my first graphic novel on 13 July 2020, about the true story of the life and death of an alien in Depression-era New York.

My Great-Grandfather, the Alien is the true story of my ancestor Thomas Carmichael. He was an enigma to our family until records about his life were made available, revealing the full fascinating story of his life and death. This graphic novel is a way of sharing a piece of social history and a means of raising funds for a memorial for the protagonist himself.

Aimed at age 12-grown up, this scrapbook style chronicle of a Scot in Manhattan is made to educate, surprise and intrigue. Keep scrolling down for more background and a sneak peak at the illustrations.

Each double-page spread brings this mysterious man’s highly unusual story to life with photo and historical document montages inspired by Robert Rauschenberg’s philosophy that “you begin with the possibility of the material”.

The book has been endorsed by geneaologist and contributing researcher to Who Do You Think You Are?, Mary Evans, who said it is “fascinating and beautifully illustrated”.

Prepare to learn some enticing Scottish and American history through the picture biography of Thomas Carmichael, my great-grandfather. You might just be inspired to research your own ancestry. On sale in my shop.

Oban Times article

Alloa Advertiser

Thomas’s memorial fundraiser

Special thanks to the Kickstarter Backers who made this project possible:

Adam Fletcher, Adam Sutton, Al Welch, Alex Barber, Alex Eeles, Andrea Motta, Anonymous, Darren & Stacey O’Neill, Chris Berger, Chris Casos, Christopher James Sheridan, Dave Cawthorn, Debbie Carter, Eamonn Byrne, Eric Stott, Gay Hogg, GeoffM, Hannah Leigh-Merrick, Heather & Alistair Merrick, Jack & Alfie Fletcher, Jelle Spelt, Jonathon Mendonca, Katy Penman, Laura Shead, Nuala Hewer, Rachel Goater, Rachelle Smith, Robyn Todd, Rory Geoghegan Ross Arnold, Ross Carpenter, Ross Lesley-Bayne, Ross McLeod, Sandy Wilkie, Sharene HR, Simon Hogg, Steven Baker, Steven Barrett, Susanna Lee, The Friends of Maple Grove Cemetery – New York City, Tim Hewitt, Val Crumley, Veronica Sondervan and Will Lorenzo.