Steven Appleby is a cartoonist, illustrator and artist living in London. His humour is usually observational and absurd.

His work first appeared in the New Musical Express in 1984 with the Captain Star comic strip, which was made into an animated cartoon series in 1997. Captain Star also appeared in The Observer, Zeit Magazin, and various comics in the UK, Europe and America.

Other comic strips appeared in many publications including The Times and the Sunday Telegraph. The strip Loomus can currently be seen in The Guardian. His work has also appeared on album covers, most notably on Trompe le Monde by the Pixies.


His series of cartoons Steven Appleby’s Normal Life was successful enough not only to be translated into German and published in Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, but also to be made into a radio series for BBC Radio 4.

| Trouble

| Captain Star

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Appleby has also had many exhibitions of paintings, published over 20 books and collaborated on a musical play, Crocs In Frocks (with Teresa Early and Roger Gosling), which was staged in Camberwell and at the ICA, London, in 2006.

Appleby spent 2013 as the artist appointed to create all the art for the Royal Brompton Hospital’s new Centre for Sleep As part of this project he made approximately seventy drawings and paintings, including a large glass screen, ‘sleep maps’ painted directly onto the walls, and a book, Into Sleep, to celebrate the completion of the work. 

In March 2016 Appleby was one of five artists invited to take part in a residency at The Carlton Arms Hotel, New York, where he spent a month painting a mural on the walls and in the bathroom of room 9a.

| Potato Hills

| Wormholes

| Small Birds Singing


An earlier series, Small Birds Singing, which ran for eight years in The Times, concerned itself with the usually surreal doings of the occupants of an English country house.