Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Dave Astor: Jobless But Not Jokeless


Above: Detail from STONE SOUP, copyright 1999 by Jan Eliot.

Dave Astor, writing for the HuffPo blog, talks about the journalistic cutbacks in his Jobless But Not Jokeless entry:
What about jobs for laid-off editorial cartoonists? Given that there might be more former staff cartoonists (still living) than current staff cartoonists (presumably still living), there are enough ex-staffers to draw a huge cartoon time machine for trekking back to B.C. (Before Cutbacks).
Comic strip cartoonist Jan Eliot, from the comments section, talks about the upcoming National Cartoonists Society Reubens weekend:

Will the members of the National Cartoonists Society actually discuss the industry that's falling down around them, or just drink the weekend away? And really, which would be more productive?

Good point!

Yes, I just checked the NCS brochure. "The Future of Newspapers and Comics" will be one of the seminars at the Reubens weekend. Drinking before, during and after: highly recommended.

Related: Michael Cavna's Comic Riffs blog has a call to arms: Black Ink Day!

Hat tip to my pal Sean Kelly for spotting Dave's column. Thanks, Sean!

5 comments:

Mark Anderson said...

Good find! And a good reminder that I miss Dave at E&P.

Nick Fechter said...

This is good news, if anyone can solve the this crisis, it's the Rueben people.

Mike Lynch said...

Yeah, Dave is a great guy, in print or in person.

Nick, I hope you're right about the "Reuben people."

James Grasdal said...

The editorial cartoonists have allowed this to happen to themselves. In a mad rush to fight over the nickels and dimes of syndication, they've priced themselves out of jobs. Why would a newspaper, with a shrinking budget ever invest even 10,000.00 per year for a single cartoonist, producing a single cartoon, 5 days a week, when they can buy 3 tons of cartoons everyday for mere pennies.

Of course now we can flash forward to the present to see how diluted cartoons have become. A nice plain, pointless gag is safer to sell to a paranoid editor than a hard hitting opinion that might ruffle feathers. Suddenly, cartoons aren't that necessary anymore. They aren't even worth the pennies.

Dave Astor said...

Thank you, Mike and Mark, for the kind words!