Neal is a Programme Leader for BA (Hons) Illustration with Animation at Manchester School of Art. He was born in Belfast and studied in Manchester (then the Polytechnic). From graduation he worked as a freelance illustrator and gradually he was asked to teach here and there for the odd day. This eventually led to him being asked to run the first year of the new BA (hons) Illustration in Bristol in 1991 and he subsequently became the Programme Leader. He joined the School of Art in Manchester in 2005. He still takes on occasional freelance jobs, if the schedule permits, and has regularly exhibited in the Royal Ulster Academy. He is interested in the use of drawing systems and the depiction of time in images. His favourite author is Flann O’Brien. He has, in the past, made a three tier buttered digestive ‘sandwich” to dunk in tea, but has gravitated towards chocolate hob-nobs in his dotage.