Friday, June 28, 2019

Video: Liza Donnelly at Inspire Fest 2019

New Yorker and CBS News cartoonist Liza Donnelly talks about how cartoons "disrupt" in this presentation from InspireFest. She cites Ben Franklin's "Join or Die" image, and rightly calls him America's first editorial cartoonist. Lou Rogers, an early 20th century female cartoonist, also used her images to move the country toward women's suffrage. Take a look at the video. Some inspiring words.

"Cartoons tell us about our world .... [Cartoons] tell us about who we are, what we're doing and what we might be doing wrong."

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Mike Lynch Cartoons in New Reader's Digest Book DUMB DAD JOKES

Just saw this at the local bookstore. Here's a 2019 book from Reader's Digest with some of my cartoons in it: DUMB DAD JOKES. You can buy it in the bookstore or online. I'm just one of several great cartoonists featured.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

William F. Brown 1928 - 2019

William F. Brown, best known as the Tony-nominated librettist for "The Wiz," passed away in Westport, CT on June 23rd at the age of 91. Mr. Brown was, in addition to a Broadway and TV writer, a cartoonist whose credits include selling his first cartoon at age 19 to King Features, creating his first book of cartoons "Tiger Tiger" the following year, as well as contributing cartoons to Stars and Stripes while he served in Korea. The 1950s saw his career on parallel tracks: writing for television and theatre, as well as selling cartoons to all of the major magazine markets. Along with Mel Casson, he created the comic strip "Boomer," which would run for nine years (1972-81).

From Broadway World:

"Brown made his Broadway debut when his play The Girl in the Freudian Slip opened at the Booth Theatre on May 18, 1967. A wild contemporary comedy about a married psychiatrist who finds himself attracted to a patient, the show ran only four performances, but is notably the first adult Broadway credit for Bernadette Peters, who was cast as a standby in the role of the psychiatrist's teen daughter. A popular illustrator, Brown also designed the play's advertising artwork and logo.
"The following year, Brown was head writer on the Broadway revue Leonard Stillman's New Faces of 1968 and was hired to write to book for How to Steal an Election. Subtitled "A Dirty Politics Musical," the off-Broadway musical opened in the weeks prior to the 1968 Presidential election that brought Richard Nixon's victory. With a score by folk artist Oscar Brand, the show depicted Jazz Age president Calvin Coolidge materializing to give a cynical political history lesson to two disillusioned protesters (played by Clifton Davis and Carole Demas, who would both go on to successful Broadway careers).
"Brown's next project become a Broadway juggernaut and earned him a Tony Award nomination for Best Book of a Musical. The Wiz was a contemporary retelling of L. Frank Baum's The Wizard of Oz, featuring a street-smart book by Brown, an R&B score by Charles Smalls and an all-black cast of performers. Although it opened with little fanfare at the Majestic Theatre on January 5, 1975, it would go on to win a total of seven Tony Awards including Best Musical and run for over four years on Broadway. A movie version was released in 1978, and The Wiz was revived on Broadway just five years after its closing in 1984. Brown was involved in many high-profile new productions of the popular hit throughout his life, and updated his book for a successful 1990s tour that reunited original show stars Stephanie Mills and André De Shields."

The Daily Cartoonist has much more, including links to his book of beatnik cartoons BEAT BEAT BEAT. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

ComicLab 67: "Writing Yourself Into a Corner" with Dave Kellett and Brad Guigar

Cartoonists Dave Kellett and Brad Guigar are talking shop! On this week’s ComicLab the fellas talk about writing yourself into a corner. NEXT a question-asker asks "is my Patreon reward tier too high?" And FINALLY, they grapple with this — if they could time-travel back to the early 90s with their current skills, would they have been able to make it as syndicated cartoonists?

Monday, June 24, 2019

Jane Krom Grammer: A Golden-Age Comic Book Artist Finally Receives Credit for Her Work by Carol L. Tilley

A page of Jane Krom’s art from the Dotty story in Supersnipe Comics, November 1946. Image courtesy of Steven Thompson.

Comics Scholar Carol Tilley sheds light on an unknown female golden age comic book artist, Jane Krom. Ms. Krom (1920 - 2012) drew a feature titled "Dotty" for Supersnipe Comics. 

"At the Grand Comics Database, many of the Dotty stories have at the time of this writing been attributed to George Marcoux, who died in April 1946. Marcoux was a protege of Percy Crosby as well as the creator of the Supersnipe character, who headlined the comic books in which Dotty appeared. Jane Krom’s work certainly shares in some of both Marcoux’s and Crosby’s playful and sweet visual realism. Her child characters look and act like real kids: alternately kinetic and languid, wise beyond their years and naïve."

Jane Krom Grammer, early 1940s. Image courtesy of her daughter Barrie Schindler.

Friday, June 21, 2019

ArtyBollocks Site: Random Artist's Statement

 (Above: Installation at the Whitechapel Gallery, by the curators of the Association of Students Sketch Club, around 1931.)

Let's say you have a gallery show. That's great! Now, the curator asks you to write an artist's statement about your work. Ya gotta do it. The patrons want it. It's the kinda thing people expect.

Ugh. Why do they want these kinds of things? You're a PICTURE person not a WORD person.

No problem. There is a fun site where at a click of a button, you can generate a random artist's statement.

Here's one:

My work explores the relationship between the tyranny of ageing and romance tourism. With influences as diverse as Nietzsche and Francis Bacon, new combinations are generated from both simple and complex layers.
Ever since I was a postgraduate I have been fascinated by the endless oscillation of the mind. What starts out as triumph soon becomes corrupted into a tragedy of power, leaving only a sense of dread and the prospect of a new synthesis.
As shimmering replicas become distorted through frantic and academic practice, the viewer is left with an insight into the darkness of our future. 

Go look.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

The Garden As of Mid-June

The garden as of mid-June. #needtoweedmore

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Bob Mankoff Resigns from Esquire Magazine: "Esquire magazine faces turmoil amid masthead exodus"

From the New York Post:

"There is chaos at Esquire, as the entire top of the masthead has either resigned or been let go following the resignation of Editor-in-Chief Jay Fielden last week.

"Bruce Handy, features editor, who one source said was the choice of Hearst Chief Content Officer Kate Lewis to be interim editor after Fielden’s resignation on May 30, instead turned it down and resigned when Fielden told staffers he planned to leave.
"Michael Hainey, the No. 2 as executive director of editorial, was in Cannes the day Fielden resigned. Earlier this year, he had turned down the Gawker reboot job that eventually went to Dan Peres. As soon as Hainey returned from France, he resigned. Helene Rubinstein, the number three who carries the title editorial director, is also said to be exiting.
"... [At] least six full-time staffers and many of the regular freelance writers were told their days were over this week. Among that tier of departures: Raul Aguila, design director; Emily Poenisch, entertainment features director; Matthew Marden, style director; Ryan Lizza, chief political correspondent; Bob Mankoff, cartoon and humor editor; Ash Carter, senior editor; and contract writer Maximillian Potter; as well as writers at large Alex French and Stephen Rodrick."
 Hat tip to Michael Maslin.

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Video: Australian Cartoonist Michael Leunig Documentary

THE LEUNIG FRAGMENTS is an entertaining and revealing portrait of Michael Leunig: Australian cartoonist, writer, painter, philosopher, poet, and playful provocateur. The World Premiere was at Sydney Film Festival on June 16th.

Monday, June 17, 2019

From the Dick Buchanan Files: Magazine Gag Cartoons 1950 - 1972

Here is a batch of cartoons from Dick Buchanan's magazine Cartoon Clip File that were boxed and put out of the way for a long time. He just found them, and they have aged like fine wine! Thanks and take it away, Dick!


(1950 – 1972)

Simply, these cartoons were culled from The Cartoon Clip File, housed somewhere in the friendly confines of New York’s Greenwich Village. These cartoons had been neatly tucked away in a box labeled NOT FILED. Upon closer inspection it was discovered many had not been filed for good reason. But imagine our surprise when we found some to be quite amusing and others which were flat out funny!  We probably won’t ever get around to filing them but are happy to share them . . .

1.  GEORGE BOOTH.  True Magazine  February, 1970.

2.  AL JOHNS.  The Saturday Evening Post July 11, 1959.

3.  HANK KETCHAM.  Collier’s June 17, 1950.

4.  BOB TUPPER.  1000 Jokes Magazine  March-May, 1963.

5.  ROBERT DAY.  Collier’s November 18, 1950.

6.  JOHNNY HART.  American Legion Magazine  February, 1956.

7.  CHARLES RODRIGUES.  Look Magazine  February 10, 1970.

8.  FRANK ELKIN.  Collier’s  July 22, 1950.

9.  L. L. (Lawry) SIGGS.  Punch  December 12, 1951.

"Very well then, hands up all those who propose to become birds."

10.  STAN HUNT.  For Laughing Out Loud  October-December, 1956.

11.  FRANK RIDGEWAY.  American Magazine  August, 1956.

12.  VIRGIL PARTCH.  Collier’s  September 9, 1950.

13.  HERB WILLIAMS.  American Magazine  February, 1950.

14.  JOSEPH KIERNAN.  Cracked Magazine  June, 1966.   

15.  JOHN GALLAGHER.  The Saturday Evening Post  August 28, 1962.

16.  BILL HOEST.  True Magazine  February, 1972. 

Friday, June 14, 2019

Video: Warner Bros. Releases First Short From Its ‘Cartoonist-Driven’ Looney Tunes Revival

New Bugs Bunny cartoons? 100 minutes of NEW Looney Tunes cartoons? ALL NEW CARTOONS? Yes, yes and yes. Count us all in.

Here's Cartoon Brew with the news:

"[Thursday], in Annecy, France, Warner Bros. Animation premiered its raucous new slate of Looney Tunes shorts, screening more than 10 of them in front of a packed house of 1,000 enthusiastic festival attendees. The program was introduced by WBA’s vp of series Audrey Diehl, joined by executive producer Pete Browngardt and supervising producer Alex Kirwan who about the production process of the new shorts in between the screening of the films.

"After the presentation, the short Dynamite Dance, directed by David Gemmill, debuted online:"

Cartoon Brew has more information here

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Skip Morrow 1951 - 2019

Cartoonist Skip Morrow, best known for his two best-selling "The Official I Hate Cats Book" cartoon books, passed away suddenly on May 28 at his home in Wilmington, Vermont. He was 67 years old.

From the obituary:

Mr. Morrow’s love of music began at age [12] when he learned to play the guitar. When he was in high school he went on to play in a rock band called Mother’s Little Helpers. In 1974, he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in communication with a focus on photojournalism from Rutgers University. Unable to land a job in this field after graduation, he turned to his talent as a singer, guitarist, and pianist and began playing music at establishments on Cape Cod, Nantucket, Bermuda, St. Thomas, New York City, the Caribbean, the Berkshires, Florida, and Boston, which included a performance for the New England Emmy Awards in 1984 at the Wang Center.
All the while, he loved to sketch. His art mostly consisted of cartoons, although he was talented in several mediums. In 1974, while still playing music on the Cape in the summers, he went to Mount Snow to find a gig playing music in the winter and became the resident musician at Snow Lake Lodge for five years. Later, he began playing at The Silo, performing with The Duck Tones and other local musicians. In 1980, he published the New York Times bestseller, “The Official I Hate Cats Book,” which launched his full-time career as an illustrator. Mr. Morrow went on to become an accomplished illustrator. He published many other books, calendars, and greeting cards, and did commissioned and freelance work for numerous corporations both locally and globally.

The Daily Cartoonist has more about Skip Morrow.

Here's a 2007 interview via PBS:

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Patrick Chappatte: "The end of political cartoons at The New York Times"

Above cartoon by Patrick Chappatte published on the front page of the NYT website on January 8, 2015, after the Charlie Hebdo attacks.

Patrick Chappatte is the editorial cartoonist for the international edition of the New York Times. He has held that job since 2001. (There is no staff editorial cartoonist position for the domestic Times.) Next month, the paper will end all political cartoons.

Here's the background of why this happened: in April 2019 the Times printed an editorial cartoon, not by Chappatte, but by Portuguese cartoonist António Moreira Antunes. The paper does reprint editorial cartoons from other sources in its editions domestic and abroad. That's the case in point with this cartoon by António Moreira Antunes:

An editor at the Times picked that cartoon to run in April. The above editorial cartoon was widely criticized as anti-Semitic. 

Antunes' explanation of his cartoon as published in the Daily Caller:

“The reading I made is that Benjamin Netanyahu’s politics, whether by the approach of elections or by being protected by Donald Trump, who changed the embassy to Jerusalem by recognizing the city as capital, and which first allowed the annexation of the Golan Heights and after the West Bank and more annexations in the Gaza Strip, which means a burial of the Oslo Accord, it represents an increase in verbal, physical and political violence,” he continued. “It is a blind policy that ignores the interests of the Palestinians. And Donald Trump is a blind man The Star of David [Jewish symbol] is an aid to identify a figure [Netanyahu] that is not very well known in Portugal.”

The Daily Cartoonist delves into the topic, pointing out that the cartoonist has been accused of being a habitual anti-Semitic critic. But it's difficult to find evidence.

Regardless, the Times will not publish editorial cartoons going forward.

So, as of next month, if you want to see an editorial cartoon in a newspaper, do not look for one in the New York Times. Here's Patrick Chappatte's reaction to the decision from his site:


The end of political cartoons at The New York Times

All my professional life, I have been driven by the conviction that the unique freedom of political cartooning entails a great sense of responsibility.

In 20-plus years of delivering a twice-weekly cartoon for the International Herald Tribune first, and then The New York Times, after receiving three OPC awards in that category, I thought the case for political cartoons had been made (in a newspaper that was notoriously reluctant to the form in past history.) But something happened. In April 2019, a Netanyahu caricature from syndication reprinted in the international editions triggered widespread outrage, a Times apology and the termination of syndicated cartoons. Weeks later, my employers tell me they're ending political cartoons altogether by July. I’m putting down my pen, with a sigh: that’s a lot of years of work undone by a single cartoon - not even mine - that should never have run in the best newspaper of the world.

I’m afraid this is not just about cartoons, but about journalism and opinion in general. We are in a world where moralistic mobs gather on social media and rise like a storm, falling upon newsrooms in an overwhelming blow. This requires immediate counter-measures by publishers, leaving no room for ponderation or meaningful discussions. Twitter is a place for furor, not debate. The most outraged voices tend to define the conversation, and the angry crowd follows in.

Over the last years, with the Cartooning for Peace Foundation we established with French cartoonist Plantu and the late Kofi Annan - a great defender of cartoons - or on the board of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists, I have consistently warned about the dangers of those sudden (and often organized) backlashes that carry everything in their path. If cartoons are a prime target it’s because of their nature and exposure: they are an encapsulated opinion, a visual shortcut with an unmatched capacity to touch the mind. That’s their strength, and their vulnerability. They might also be a revealor of something deeper. More than often, the real target, behind the cartoon, is the media that published it.

“Political cartoons were born with democracy.
And they are challenged when freedom is.“

In 1995, at twenty-something, I moved to New York with a crazy dream: I would convince the New York Times to have political cartoons. An art director told me: “We never had political cartoons and we will never have any.“ But I was stubborn. For years, I did illustrations for NYT Opinion and the Book Review, then I persuaded the Paris-based International Herald Tribune (a NYT-Washington Post joint venture) to hire an in-house editorial cartoonist. By 2013, when the NYT had fully incorporated the IHT, there I was: featured on the NYT website, on its social media and in its international print editions. In 2018, we started translating cartoons on the NYT Chinese and Spanish websites. The U.S. paper edition remained the last frontier. Gone out the door, I had come back through the window. And proven that art director wrong: The New York Times did have political cartoons. For a while in history, they dared.

Along with The Economist, featuring the excellent Kal, The New York Times was one of the last venues for international political cartooning - for a U.S. newspaper aiming to have a meaningful impact worldwide, it made sense. Cartoons can jump over borders. Who will show the emperor Erdogan that he has no clothes, when Turkish cartoonists can’t do it ? – one of them, our friend Musa Kart, is now in jail. Cartoonists from Venezuela, Nicaragua and Russia were forced into exile. Over the last years, some of the very best cartoonists in the U.S., like Nick Anderson and Rob Rogers, lost their positions because their publishers found their work too critical of Trump. Maybe we should start worrying. And pushing back. Political cartoons were born with democracy. And they are challenged when freedom is.

“The power of images
has never been so big.“

Curiously, I remain positive. This is the era of images. In a world of short attention span, their power has never been so big. Out there is a whole world of possibilities, not only in editorial cartooning, still or animated, but also in new fields like on-stage illustrated presentations and long-form comics reportage - of which I have been a proponent for the last 25 years. (I’m happy, by the way, to have opened the door for the genre at the NYT with the “Inside Death Row“ series in 2016. The following year, another series about Syrian refugees by Jake Halpern and Michael Sloan got the NYT a Pulitzer prize.) It’s also a time where the media need to renew themselves and reach out to new audiences. And stop being afraid of the angry mob. In the insane world we live in, the art of the visual commentary is needed more than ever. And so is humor.

Patrick Chappatte
June 10, 2019


Editorial Cartoonists React to New York Times Dropping All Editorial Cartoons

Monday, June 10, 2019

Video: Robert Sikoryak Interview

In this interview segment, Robert Sikoryak shares insights on his early career and also discusses parody in comics with Henry Chamberlain. Featured here is his book, The Unquotable Donald Trump, published by Drawn & Quarterly. For more of the interview go to

Friday, June 07, 2019

From the Dick Buchanan Files: Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 10 1949 - 1966

Wow! Here's another batch of gag cartoon clichés that have been collected over the years by our friend Dick Buchanan. Thanks, Dick. And don't forget to look at all of the other clichés that Dick has cataloged. Including this entry, there are now fifty magazine cartoon clichés, with 150 samples. My goodness! A feast. The links are below.

(1949 - 1966)

Cartoon Clip File Cliché Compendium continues the task of surveying gag cartoon clichés prevalent during the mid-20th Century. Haphazardly culled from the leading magazines of the era, these gag cartoons illustrate cartoonist’s attempts to add a new twist to an old situation. Sometimes they were inspired, other times they fell flat into the same old rut that begat the cliché in the first place.
It was all in fun.


1. DAN DANGLO. 1000 Jokes Magazine March-May, 1956.

2. VAHAN SHIRVANIAN. 1000 Jokes Magazine December, 1959-February, 1960.

3. AL JOHNS. The Saturday Evening Post. October 10, 1959.


1. JOHN DEMPSEY. 1000 Jokes Magazine August-October, 1954.

2. REAMER KELLER. Collier’s March 28, 1953.

3. HERB WILLIAMS. American Magazine February, 1949.


1. ROBERT DAY. Collier’s September 25, 1948.

2. HANK KETCHAM. Collier’s July 2, 1949.

3. AL JOHNS. The Saturday Evening Post October 10, 1959.


1. DICK ERICSON. 1000 Jokes Magazine December 1965-February, 1966.

2. GUSTAV LUNDBERG. 1000 Jokes Magazine May-July, 1955.

3. VIRGIL PARTCH. True Magazine November, 1956.


1. ROBERT DAY. The Saturday Evening Post February 11, 1950.

2. CLYDE LAMB. American Legion Magazine November, 1953.

3. VAHAN SHIRVANIAN. 1000 Jokes Magazine March-May, 1958.

Need more?

Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 1
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 2
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 3
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 4
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 5
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 6
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 7 
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 8
Gag Cartoon Clichés Part 9