David Mahoney's one of the few creatives who has written for us while still a student. Since then his illustrator career has really taken off and now the Edinburgh-based artist is putting on his first solo exhibition in London, Black + White.

Black + White is a collection of duelling portraits of musicians and politicians, setting well-known figures against others they've had well-publicised spats with - or, in the case of Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin, a geopolitical falling out that could have lead to World War 3.

Other portraits feature Adele, Kanye West, Lana Del Ray, Miley Cyrus and the Rolling Stones.

.“In this series I wanted to try to unify these contrasting figures in a similar style," says David, "with simple black ink-wash backgrounds, black clothing and small pen drawings around their portraits that each person can be identified by."

The works were initially created using squid ink, pens, pencils and watercolours, and then composited digitally.

"Squid ink [is] my primary medium," says David. "Since [beginning] working with it, it has dictated how my work looks. I now find myself exploring texture, brushstrokes and subtle information such as symbolism in my work than colour.

"I find working in colour to be overpowering and I now tend to save using colour for few pieces where I find it appropriate.”

Black + White is at the Coningsby Gallery from September 22 to 27.

Read on to see more of Davd's work from Black + White.

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