The PUBlic Window: LJ Matthews



LJ Matthews is an illustrator and comic creator based on the Northumberland coast, who work with both digital and traditional drawing mediums, such as watercolour, pen and ink.  LJ ‘s work is primarily inspired by manga, horror, fantasy, science fiction and folklore.

While part of The Newbridge Project’s Collective Studio in 2020-21, LJ began to think about how their work can contribute to and inspire discussion about Northern working-class culture.

LJ states “I grew up in Blyth and my work is often inspired by my working-class roots and upbringing, especially mining heritage and alternative culture. Having always lived by the sea, I’m particularly drawn to ideas around the coast as a liminal place, full of contrast and mystery. I especially love Northumbrian folklore due to its strong ties to both mining and the sea”.

In this PUBlic Window, LJ creates a diorama focused around mythology and folk lore of Northumberland. The diorama displays freestanding illustrations of creatures from local myths and legends. Please follow the below link for more information about each creature and the folk lore surrounding it.

“My hope is for this piece to educate local people about these myths and encourage them to learn more, as many have been forgotten by the general public. I also hope it brings a little bit of magic into their everyday life!”

For more information see