Acting legend Sir Ian's doodle for epilepsy charity

Sir Ian McKellen has demonstrated a latent flair for art as he joined a host of celebrities backing a new charity campaign.

Tuesday, 19th September 2017, 2:25 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th September 2017, 2:30 pm
Sir Ian McKellen

The acclaimed actor, who was raised in Wigan, would probably be first to admit that he shouldn’t give up his day job for life with a palette and easel.

But the 78-year-old’s work with a felt tip shows a certain ability to conjure up a recognisable image with a few deft strokes. And of course, who else would the star of stage and screen draw than his beloved William Shakespeare?

Sir Ian was one of many famous faces busy doodling to raise much-needed funds for national charity Epilepsy Action.

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National Doodle Day is on Friday 22 September and the proceeds from this annual event will directly support the 600,000 people living with epilepsy in the UK.

Doodles from other celebrities from this region alone also include actresses Julie Hesmondhalgh and Alison Steadman, TV presenter, Karl Pilkington, acting legend Bernard Cribbins and comedian Lee Mack will go under the hammer alongside those by Miranda Hart, Fay Ripley, Eleanor Tomlinson and Tim Vine.

Other one-off creations from artists, fashion designers, cartoonists and children’s illustrators will be included in the three-day eBay auction.

Over 1,500 celebrities, including Mary Berry, Eddie Redmayne and Olivia Colman, have taken part in National Doodle Day since it began 14 years ago.

This year sees a record fifth submission from the charity’s highest-grossing doodler, Grayson Perry.

Xanthe Hopkinson, doodler in residence at Epilepsy Action, said: “Every year we are overwhelmed with support from celebrities, and always look forward to seeing their creations.

“There are no rules when it comes to doodles - this is an event that really lets their imaginations fly. National Doodle Day gives people a chance to get their hands on an original piece of art by their favourite celebrity, artist or designer.

“It also raises vital funds for people affected by epilepsy all over the UK. Don’t forget to get bidding on Friday September 22, when the auction goes live, at!”

Epilepsy affects around one in every 100 people in the UK alone and 87 people are diagnosed with the condition every day. Each year, Epilepsy Action directly helps over 2 million people through a range of services, including the Epilepsy Action Helpline freephone 0808 800 5050, branch network and award-winning website,