Showing posts with label gag cartoons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label gag cartoons. Show all posts

Thursday, October 25, 2018

A Chat with Dan Rosandich, Cartoonist for Hire

by Mike Rhode

I got a tip that cartoons were included in a US Capitol Visitors Center exhibit about the 'Separation Of Powers.'  I was able to track down cartoonist Dan Rosandich, who confirmed that the cartoons were his work, but that he wasn't contractually allowed to talk about doing them. Instead, he answered our usual questions for a visiting cartoonist.

What type of comic work or cartooning do you do?

I do cartoons that are gag panels and I keep myself "on call" for assignments as I get requests for special custom cartoons through my online web catalog and portfolio pages. I'm currently illustrating a logo for a micro-brewery out east and am almost finished.

I also recently finished a magazine cover for a small trade journal based in Illinois (their October issue in fact)

How do you do it? Traditional pen and ink, computer or a combination?

I am old school, based on drawing these illustrations for 40+ years now. I have tried many drawing nibs, dip pens, markers and micro-tip felt pens and am comfortable using the Rapidograph technical pen. Normally I pencil in a gag cartoon, ink it in using the Koh-I-Noor Rapidograph and let that dry and later I clean it with a soft eraser. I then scan the artwork into Photoshop. I still use Photoshop version 6.0....very antiquated, but it works for me and I can format high resolution cartoon files and store each image into an appropriately named folder on my hard drive for easy access and retrieval.

I used to use Higgins Waterproof India Ink for coloring work but it's an obsolete practice I think.... no editor wants to have to get an originally illustrated watercolor, than have to either scan it or make a transparency from it, when all they really need to do is take any properly-formatted files supplied from the cartoonist and import it into their digital publishing software they lay their publication out with.

Technology has really revolutionized the cartooning business from that standpoint. But it's creating original paper images that I like... I could do it all on a Cintiq I guess, but what would I have to hold in my (ink-stained) hands afterwards?

When (within a decade is fine) and where were you born?

I was born in 1957 north of Detroit, Michigan.

Where do you live now?

I live in Michigan's Upper Peninsula (aka Yooperland!)

What is your training and/or education in cartooning?

I never went to any fancy art school or had a formal college course in art... I immediately began sending out cartoons to magazines while in my last year of high school and sold one to a trade magazine based in NYC and was "hooked". I still can't describe the feeling you get when you aspire to something you want, and get an acceptance. You immediately get that "I have arrived" overwhelming feeling. And when it happens to a kid, that makes the impact all that much greater and memorable.

It really motivates you.

Who are your influences?

I discovered underground comics as a kid and liked their freedom of expression from the get-go. Robert Crumb's work blew my mind....his attention to detail was / is so great....the cross-hatching and use of black to make characters "pop" is so unique.

The usual comic strip influences were of course Schulz who had already published many Peanuts anthologies which were huge coffee table size books and I'd go to the library to check them out and leaf through them, absorbing all the in depth line art and the way he'd box in each panel, ever so carefully while smelling the light mildewy odor mixed in with the inks that eminated off each page....I thought I was in nirvana.

I'd also graze all the back copies of The New Yorker at my high school library and was enthralled with a guy names Marvin Townsend whose gag panels appeared in all the Weekly Readers I'd go through as a kid.

If you could, what in your career would you do-over or change?

Get a good formal art training or training in architectural design. It would be an asset in making future artwork look much better and in today's digital realm, that training might assist in getting work in other areas of illustration.

Overall, I think I got in the freelance business when there was less competition and cartoonists seemed more willing to share and help one another. Nowadays it's very competitive....especially with everyone having their own online portfolios they can show to get work.

What work are you best-known for?

Probably 'Pete & Jake' which is a cartoon panel I do for World Fencing Data Center based in Austin, Texas. I have illustrated the cartoon about two bumbling fence installation workers who work for the fictitious Boss Fence Company and their cantankerous 'boss' who also appears regularly in the cartoons in each monthly issue of World Fence News.

 I started in 1995 and just last week finished the latest package of 40 new panels and am just now creating some special color Christmas cartoons for the upcoming holiday season.

They sometimes run a few cartoons in an issue and the following month dedicate a full page to all kinds of panels and a "Best Of" series of cartoons that have appeared in previous issues.

Their editor and publisher are big aficionados of the single panel gag concept and I've also done oodles of strips and other various multi-panels for them. They are a great regular client of mine.

Advertisers seeing my work have also reached out and assigned work used for promoting their own fence or safety-related products.

What work are you most proud of?

Overall, I have to say my entire "body" of work. I have well over 5,000 cartoons I make available throughout my online catalog and my site also acts as a promotional tool in order to get assignments for book illustration work and other custom created cartoons I offer.

But aside from what is online, I have an extensive portfolio of previously published book  illustrations, direct-mail projects of illustrated, images for marketers, consultants and facilitators have used numerous cartoons of mine, including custom cartoons for books and presentations, social media, web sites, email "blasts" and more.

I've illustrated everything from book covers and magazine covers to package design and t-shirt illustrations.

What would you like to do  or work on in the future?

I would love to publish my own hard-copy catalog. I once had Don Martin of Mad magazine send me his little catalog offering his originals for sale. It was insane, but it was an impetus for a new idea I always had in the back of my mind.

Only my "catalog" would offer cartoons that advertising agencies could buy for whatever usage they request licensing those specific cartoons for. That hard copy booklet could also be used as a portfolio I could sell if I ever visited a city and went into ad agencies on my own time.

I am still considering my options in regards to it because it takes planning, such as how to acquire names and addresses of the right people to get the catalogs to, what the expense would be (not just for printing) but for getting all the right contact names and then shipping them out.

What do you do when you're in a rut or have writer's block?

I spread things out. I have a subscription to SalesFlower which is an online database that allows you to choose different Standard Industrial Classification codes (SIC codes) of businesses. I pick out phone numbers of art directors or creative directors and make cold calls.

If not that, I switch gears and re-draw old cartoons that never sold or do work I never had time to focus on, such as giftware designs for POD sites (publishing on demand) like Cafe Press or Zazzle (I have accounts with both, but favor Zazzle over CafePress).

If not that, as you well know, paperwork is overwhelming...just cleaning up paperwork can be a relief....focusing on that can have a big impact on changing your outlook to a more positive one.

What do you think will be the future of your field?

The future of cartoons will definitely trend towards digital and the internet. The newspapers have dwindled to the point where comic strips are less and less important based on many sites like GoComics have taken up promoting those cartoonists online. GoComics isn't interested in my work I don't think, but I know of know fellow artists who report making money through that platform. That's not to say that they aren't trying, but I feel it's more in each respective cartoonist's court, to promote themselves. Build their own sites and display their work to the world on their
own...don't be part of a collection where you get lost in the shuffle. I'm not sure that's good. Your work will have it's own uniqueness if it stands alone and you present it in such a way that it's "marketed" to the right potential clients.

What conventions do you attend?

I attend no conventions as I have nothing to sell, aside from original gag panels, but I don't consider my original art as a "collectible" in any way. It's likely they'd say "Who's Rosandich?"

Have you visited DC before?

I haven't, but it's definitely on my list!

If not, what do you want to do?

I'd like to get to the U.S. Capitol . . .don't ask me why! And so many other famous monuments I would see I have an old school classmate who lives there and he was a Congressional guard in the military who said he can show me around the beltway and surround areas. The Smithsonian would be considered a "bucket list" visit!

Do you have a website or blog?

My main web site home page is at and my blog I write, focuses solely on cartoons, comic strips, the cartooning business, cartoonists and I occasionally reflect on things related to cartooning such as gag writing and promoting and marketing your cartoons on a freelance basis. My Toonblog can be found at

Friday, April 07, 2017

Ralph Baden - An Artomatic Interview

by Mike Rhode

Ralph Baden's work at Artomatic was quite a surprise as it's often NSFW, or families. The centerpiece of his exhibit is a large painting of a man with an erect penis and a caption that wouldn't make it through many Internet filters. We reached out to him to ask our usual questions, some of which are less relevant to a painter than a cartoonist, and he gamely answered them.

What type of comic work or cartooning do you do?

Large scale political satire and comical oil paintings.

How do you do it? Traditional pen and ink, computer or a combination?

Oil painting on canvas.


When (within a decade is fine) and where were you born?

1960's Maryland.

What neighborhood or area do you live in?


What is your training and/or education in cartooning?

The Corcoran School of Art

Who are your influences?

I'm doing pretty original stuff. Nobody takes oil painting and makes the most vulgar painting -- except maybe the old Dutch masters -- paintings where people got drunk in the streets -- they were funny.

If you could, what in your career would you do-over or change?

To do it over I'd have to have a career- but I would have gone twice as loud, twice as big and twice as early.

What work are you best-known for?

Nobody knows of me -- I'm amazed you contacted me.


What work are you most proud of?

 In 2016, being expelled from 2 un-juried shows with 2 completely different bodies of work -- also not being allowed to sell at a farmers market under the freeway by the prison in Baltimore because my work wasn't family friendly... and also not being accepted into The Bromo Seltzer building because my work was considered"too unique".

What would you like to do or work on in the future?

Bigger larger scales. I would like to have a room full of people laughing at my work at The Met or The MOMA

What do you do when you're in a rut or have writer's block?

Stare at a light bulb.

What do you think will be the future of your field?

Trash can, dumpster, landfill.

What monument or museum do like to take visitors to?

The Phillips -- I love to go sit in the Mark Rothko meditation room and wonder why.

How about a favorite local restaurant?


Do you have a website or blog?

Monday, September 28, 2015

Pea Soup ephemera (UPDATED)

Here's a couple of post cards I bought a few weeks ago in Arlington's Civitan flea market, with a nice gag cartoon about making pea soup. The pea soup empire grew well - it still exists!

And here's Pea Soup Andesen's website since I'm posting their cartoon.Their website says about the cartoon: "In the early thirties a cartoon appeared in the old "Judge" magazine. It was one of a series by the famous cartoonist Forbell, under the heading of "Little Known Occupations." The cartoon showed the little known occupation of splitting peas for pea soup, with two comic chefs standing at a chopping table, one holding a huge chisel, splitting peas singly as they came down a chute."

Thursday, February 26, 2015

J. Robert Deans explains why he is Kickstarting a cow-in-space childrens book

by Mike Rhode
J. Robert Deans may be most familiar to the local community as a comic book store manager, but he's been working on a webcomic, and now has launched a Kickstarter campaign for a cartoony children's book about a cow in space. In the middle of that fundraising, he took the time to answer my usual questions.

What type of comic work or cartooning do you do?
Around the time my daughter was born, I started working in a comic shop in Springfield, the former NOVA Comics. After that closed, I worked for Game On Comics in Vienna. I’ve had a web comic for almost three years now, a weekly single-panel gag comic called “Crass Fed Comics,” which is mostly jokes and puns in cartoon form. I occasionally post other random pieces of art as well, larger pieces, longer comics, or stuff that doesn’t fit the theme. Last year I added a new comic, the monthly (soon to be bi-monthly) comic strip “The Adventures of Surf and Turf,” which features a cow and penguin hanging out on a farm…with puns. Lots of puns. Last year after being laid off from Game On, I had an idea based on a silly doodle I had done some time earlier, and that quickly became a picture book for kids, which has exploded into half a dozen book ideas, and “Crass Fed Kids” was born. The first book, Moo Thousand and Pun, is now being Kickstarted. Subsequent books may be as well, depending on the success of the first, which features a cow in space.

How do you do it? Traditional pen and ink, computer or a combination?
I do have a tablet with the Manga Studio program on it. I use that to make corrections and add colors to art when necessary. (Moo Thousand was done this way, with letters also added digitally.) Most of the Crass Fed cartoons are black and white line art, but when I color I use technology. For the most part, I use pen and ink. I like drawing digitally, and I keep experimenting…but nothing can replace a pencil and a sheet of Bristol board.
When (within a decade is fine) and where were you born?
I was born in the early 1970s, in South Carolina. Luckily, I escaped.
Why are you in Washington now? What neighborhood or area do you live in?
When I was moving to go to college after a few years of working full time, my best friend tried to hook me up on a blind date with her friend. That Christmas, said friend sent me a card with her picture in it. A couple of weeks later we went on that date, and haven’t looked back. After I graduated I moved up here to the Springfield area to be with her. She’s a native to the area.
What is your training and/or education in cartooning?
None. And, to be honest, it shows. I have been drawing and doodling all my life, but I never took any formal classes. The past few years have been filled with several family tragedies, and drawing was an outlet to keep myself distracted. My position as a comics retailer afforded me many friends in the industry that have been very generous with their time and advice, and I have taken advantage of that.
Who are your influences?
Oy. A ton. It may not show up in my work at all, but artists like Will Eisner, Wally Wood, Jack Kirby, John Romita Sr, Frank Robbins, Alex Toth, Paul Reinman, Martin Nodell, Carmine Infantino, Charles Schulz, they were all over the books I read as a child. And many more, to be sure.
Creators that could be considered contemporary to me would include Dave Stevens, Stan Sakai, Chris Samnee, Gabriel Hardman, Dave McDonald, Paul Smith, Frank Cho, Evan Shaner, Roger Langridge, Howard Chaykin, Kevin Maguire, George Perez…too many to really count. The late Mike Parobeck and Mike Wieringo remain favorites. And that doesn’t even include the writers.
The biggest outside influence on my work today is Stephan Pastis, the creator of “Pearls Before Swine,” who I am pretty sure is my spirit animal.
I have also amassed a wonderful core of friends who help me almost daily with their encouragement, advice, and talent, and make my life that much more enjoyable: Jamie Cosley, Tara O’Connor, Matt Wieringo, Drew Moss, Bob Frantz, Eryk Donovan, Hoyt Silva, Erica Schultz, and Steve Conley.
Clearly, my wife and daughter (who at times is a collaborator) are my biggest influences. I really just do what I do for them. The fact that others have enjoyed the result is gravy, and something I am always thankful for. I also have to acknowledge Francesco Francavilla and his wife Lisa, who was the final push for me to start Crass Fed, with an almost literal kick to the tuckus and a “go do it, ya dummy!”
If you could, what in your career would you do-over or change?
Start younger. A lot younger. I’m at an age when arthritis and vision problems set in (and they are). Plus, I would have started taking classes to improve my craft that much earlier.
What work are you best-known for?
Probably my penguin avatar. I drew it while I was in high school, and when I go to shows, once I tell folks I’m “that penguin guy,” they recognize me. Next would probably be the cows, which I draw for my daughter. Her favorite toy is a stuffed cow she has had since birth, and that cow is the star of Moo Thousand.
What work are you most proud of?
There are a couple of individual cartoons from Crass Fed or Surf and Turf that I am proud of, but the biggest thing is the book. One friend, when I asked him to read a draft after the art had been finished, said that everyone says they write, but few actually finish a book. He said no matter what the reaction, I should take pride in my producing a complete work…and I do. I like how it turned out, people I don’t know have enjoyed it, and have asked for more. That’s… a nice feeling.
What would you like to do or work on in the future?
I would like to try my hand at writing a traditional cape and cowl comic. That would be a challenge, to be sure. I see what writers go through to keep readers captivated month in, month out, and it’s daunting and admirable. For some reason, I would like to try that.
Barring that, I have ideas for several other books in the Crass Fed Kids line, and hopefully this first one will be successful enough to allow me to make more.
What do you do when you're in a rut or have writer's block?
This may fall in to the category of “TMI,” but I jump in the shower. Every time I’ve had an idea that has really worked, like Moo Thousand, that lightbulb has gone off while I’m in the shower. After that, I put on another pot of coffee and get to work.
What do you think will be the future of your field?
Honestly, once we get past all of this histrionic crap about new female and minority creators and have real representation and equality at the creative level, comics will blossom. Folks still have a bizarre preconception about comics and comic shops, and the only thing that will get us past that is diversity. Speaking as a former retailer, every new comic book movie does nothing to boost comic sales. In almost ten years of selling comics in which there were some 20 comic-book-based blockbusters, I can count on one hand the number of new readers that came in to the shop because they saw one of those movies.
What really got people into the shop where they may not have thought of comics before were books like March by John Lewis. Or Bone by Jeff Smith. Or Ms. Marvel by G. Willow Wilson and Adrian Alphona. Books that feature lead characters that aren’t white dudes in tights. While there isn’t anything wrong with white dudes in tights, there are so many more worlds to explore that we need to open up the gates to everyone who has a story to tell… and let them tell them. Encourage them. Inspire them. Get them started with a pencil and a dream and support to let them tell their story. When we can really do that with everyone, the future will be as rich and as amazing as we can dream it to be.
What local cons do you attend? The Small Press Expo, Intervention, or others? Any comments about attending them?

We regularly attend Heroes in Charlotte, Baltimore Comic Con, and SPX. We also went to AwesomeCon last year. If all goes well with the Kickstarter, this year will be our first exhibiting, starting with AwesomeCon. We will also have tables at Heroes, and are in the queue for a table at SPX. Baltimore is up in the air this year (because of a family scheduling conflict).

I have written about attending conventions for my blog, because they are such different animals for exhibitors than attendees. The cost of attending a show can be pretty big, especially if the show isn’t local. Admission, hotels, meals, travel, all of that adds up before you even buy your first piece of art or your first book. When you exhibit, that costs goes up exponentially with table fees, travel and shipping all of the materials needed to exhibit…it’s an expensive undertaking just in hopes that a few folks stop at your table and check out your work. It’s exhausting, and most creators hope they can just break even. It’s a little easier for artists because they can always sell commissions, but writers have to be able to sell their story, which is a lot harder in a convention setting where the visual side of the medium is king.

The advice I give everyone about attending is go to have fun. Even I have attended a show (Heroes, the first time), just to meet a particular creator (Kelly Sue DeConnick). In addition to that, use the time to explore other creators you don’t know. Browse the artist alley. Check out folks sharing tables. Their budget is small, and their hopes large. A simple $5 purchase at their tables could be just the encouragement they need to keep creating. Who knows… a comic bought on a whim at a table could mean you were one of the first people to discover the next big thing in comics. I call it “Try 5” and have written more about the idea on my blog at

What's your favorite thing about DC?

I met my wife here. The food’s pretty good too.

Least favorite?

The commuting. Always, the commuting.

What monument or museum do like to take visitors to?

I actually let my wife handle that. Being the native, she is much better at figuring out logistics and such when those visits are needed. Aside from the Library of Congress where my wife works, Air and Space is usually the big hit, though. And Natural History. Old books, space, and dinosaurs rule, I suppose.

How about a favorite local restaurant?

I used to manage a restaurant, nothing at all fancy, and my wife is finishing up her first cookbook, so we tend to cook most of the time. But, if friends are in town it’s hard to top any of Jose Andres’ options. Jaleo is probably the favorite. Or one of a small handful of good Pho places. Hard to go wrong with Pho, or my favorite, Bibimbap.

Do you have a website or blog?

Indeed. My home site, which has been running since ’97, is – from there you can get to my blog (, or any of my webcomics (all hosted at, plus a few other sites like my wife’s recipe blog, or other art, such as my daughter’s art ( I am also on twitter (@jrobertdeans). I don’t have a public page for Facebook, but when I remember to, comics are also cross-posted on the Crass Fed Comic page on Facebook.

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Bob Mankoff asks, "How About Wednesday - Is Wednesday Good For You?"

Robert Mankoff is the New Yorker's cartoon editor and a very smart man. He'll be at Politics and Prose on Wednesday, April 2, at 7 pm to discuss his new book, How About Never - Is Never Good for You? My Life In Cartoons (Henry Holt, $32.50).

The book is a breezy, extremely well-illustrated autobiography / history of New Yorker cartooning / treatise on gag cartooning that is a quick, but worthwhile read. The style is one that Mankoff perfected on his From the Desk of Bob Mankoff blog: short, pithy, humorous essays well illustrated by cartoons. By this point, in 20 years of being the cartoon editor, he's selected over 14,000 for the magazine, many of which aren't by him. That's actually a sample of the type of humor in the book by the way.

My suspicion is that parts of this book actually appeared there first, which in no way undermines its value. The introduction is actually useful for anyone who picks up the book and is unfamiliar with Mankoff's role in cartooning. He then begins with a superficial look at his early interest in cartooning, relating that to the currently-fashionable theory that Jews produced much of the 20th century's comic art.* And honestly, that is all we really need about his teenage years, and the book picks up steam when he writes about attempting to break into Lee Lorenz's cartoonist stable. His discussion of the need for a distinctive style, and developing his pointillist version, is quite interesting. Mankoff's look at the first cartoons by him, Jack Zeigler, Michael Maslin, Roz Chast and Mick Stevens is clever, and his discussion of the changing nature of New Yorker cartoons is a must-read.

A chapter looks at how he began the Cartoon Bank, an electronic database / syndication service for cartoons the New Yorker rejected, sold that to the magazine which expanded it, and indexed and digitized all the cartoons the magazine had ever run. The way the magazine handled this before was a scrapbook for each cartoonist with clippings pasted in them. One can easily see the possibilities that having a computer-searchable catalog opened up for licensing and reprint books.

Perhaps a little too much space is devoted to the Seinfeld episode which focussed on the New Yorker's cartoon choices, but Mankoff uses that as a stepping off place to write about the nature of cartoon humor. As I said, he's a very smart man. Mankoff also looks at the joys and difficulties of developing his own stable of newer cartoonists, how and why cartoons are selected, editor-in-chief David Remnick's role in the final selection, the cartoon contest is the magazine's back pages, and closes with a look at the newest cartoonists to join the magazine.

Overall, if one is interested in either gag cartooning, the New Yorker, or the nature of humor, this is a must-have book.

*Not that there's anything wrong with that, to quote another comedic Jew, Jerry Seinfeld.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Cartoons on matchbooks

I stopped into the MARVA matchbook club meeting yesterday to hand off some old matchbooks (as you know, I love ephemera) and the group was very welcoming. They usually have piles they trade amongst themselves as everyone has to specialize. I found a few of cartoon interest:

matchbooks - 1940s cartoons
3 hillbilly gag cartoons, probably from the 1940s or early 1950s, on matchbook covers.

Matchbooks - won't be long now
"Won't Be Long Now" hillbilly cartoon gag on matchbook cover.

matchbooks - Cricket not Disney
A cricket that looks a lot like Disney's Jiminy on a "Li'l Cricket Food Stores" matchbook cover.

matchbooks Art Instruction
Matchbook ad for Art Instruction, Inc, the school that Charles Schulz attended (via correspondence) and taught at before Peanuts.

Matchbooks Art Instruction reverse
Interior of matchbook ad for Art Instruction, Inc, the school that Charles Schulz attended (via correspondence) and taught at before Peanuts.

matchbooks - Francisque Poulbot of France
Cartoon matchbook spotlighting French cartoonist.

ANNÉE DE L'ENFANCE [aka, Année internationale de l’enfant : 1979]

Francisque Poulbout (1879-1946)
Dessinateur humoriste, POULBOT devient célèbre vers 1910, grâce à ses dessins inspirés des gosses de la rue. Il crée en 1920 le Dispensaire de P'tits Poulbots et la République de Montmartre pour aider les enfants nécessiteux. Le nom de poulbot est aujourd’hui passé dans la langue courante pour désigner un gosse de la rue.

Translation by Portugese comics scholar Leo de Sa:

Francisque Poulbout (1879-1946)
Cartoonist, POULBOT became famous around 1910, thanks to his drawings inspired by street kids. In 1920 he created the Dispensary of Little Poulbots and the Republic of Montmartre to help needy children. The name "poulbot" became the everyday-language designation for a street kid.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Some surprising local publications

I went to a couple of booksales this weekend and found some cartoon publications with local ties that surprised me.

The New Yorker isn't based here of course, but they do specialty books on demand. Here's a local one that was probably a fund-raising premium for the local public radio and tv station:

New Yorker WETA Book of Cartoons

The New Yorker Book Of WETA Cartoons
New Yorker Magazine
New York: Cartoon Bank, 2004

The University of Maryland's Terrapin Anime Society (TAS) produced at least 10 issues of this Tsunami fanzine:

Tsnunami fanzine 1-9

Tsunami fanzine 1-10

This Fandom Directory out of Springfield, VA was a complete surprise to me. The online version lives at FANDATA:

Fandom Directory 2001 directory

Fandom Directory Number 19 2000-2001 Edition
Hopkins, Harry and Mariane S.
Springfield, VA: FANDATA Publications, 2000

When I finally get all of my local books and comics arranged in one place, it will probably be at least a bookshelf and not the Six Feet of Local Comics I had expected. I bought about eight signed Herblock books this weekend too which will take up most of a shelf by themselves.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

OT: Viennese cartoon exhibit

So my wife just returned from Vienna, Austria, where she stumbled across a comics exhibit - the Fiese Bilder des Schwarzen Humors Meisterwerke comic and cartoon exhibit. She photographed it for me.

There's a few non-exhibit comics shots in there too of things she stumbled across - 2 of an Asterix sign, 1 of a poster warning of pollen, and 1 of a car with Michel Valiant comic art decoupage.

Thanks, Cathy!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

How about Happy Hooligan? Or Princeton plates?

Here's a Happy Hooligan planter (possibly) I picked up last weekend. It's small - it would fit in the palm of my hand.




And here's some plates that appear to be aimed at appealing to a Princeton University sophisticate.

"With his active interests, we'll probably send him to Princeton!" cartoon plate made by Paden City Pottery Company, and sold by College Hall, Tuckahoe, N.Y.

"She once dated a Princeton man! What's she doing up here?" cartoon plate made Paden City Pottery Company, and sold by College Hall, Tuckahoe, N.Y.

Label on reverse of Princeton cartoon plate - made by Paden City Pottery Company, and sold by College Hall, Tuckahoe, N.Y.

Finally, I didn't get anything but the photographs, but here's another of the Disney nutrition posters at DC bus stops - the third I think.


Sunday, September 06, 2009

Post on Scooby-Doo's 40th, NY Times on comics

Hank Steuver thinks the 40th anniversary of Scooby-Doo doesn't deserve a press release - "Enough Already! All '69 Anniversaries Should Be 86ed," By Hank Stuever, Washington Post Staff Writer, Sunday, September 6, 2009, and honestly, it's hard to disagree with him.

Also in the Style & Arts section is a caricature of Jay Leno by Hanoch Piven.

The NY Times, having apparently decided that comic art is just another form of culture had a bunch of articles today besides Ms. Gerberg's marriage.

Two articles on animation -

A Tribute to the Man, Beyond Just the Mouse, By CAROL KINO, September 6, 2009 on the Walt Disney Family Museum -

- and an interview on 9 - "Scrap-Heap Heroes for a Digital Age," By MEKADO MURPHY, September 6, 2009 -

- one on the Berndt Toast Gang, a group of Long Island gag cartoonists that didn't make it into the Washington print edition - "Pen Strokes and Gag Lines, a Stimulus Package for All," By JAMES KINDALL, New York Times September 6, 2009-

- one on a musician comic book writer whose new comic is Fall Out Toy Works- "A Night Out With | Pete Wentz; Song-and-Spoof Man," By TRICIA ROMANO -

- and Jason Lutes illustrated Paul Krugman's article on economics in the Magazine.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Wildly OT, but amusing: Hustler cartoonist's blog

Dan Collins just wrote in, "I recently started my own cartoon blog. I've been a full time professional cartoonist since 1976."

Dan's work certainly fits into the Secret History of Comics - as he notes on his site, "Those cartoons have no doubt shown up in the inboxes of most of you at one time or another. Just look for the 'collins' at the bottom. If only I had a nickel every time they did."

I'm sure I've seen Dan's work that way too, but his blog is darned funny.

OT: Donna Barstow, editorial cartoonist

Donna found me while looking for Dave Astor (sorry Dave!) and sent the following PR in, but she also noted "there are only 2 other women in [UCLICK's editorial group (over 60), and it's quite a switch to go from magazine gag cartoons to editorials (although I'm still doing mag cartoons mostly)! I'm hugely enjoying the challenge, but haven't gotten much feedback yet." So check her out on Slate (which actually offers you the opportunity to "Buy Donna Barstow for your Web, wireless or print publication." Is this the next step in cartooning?

She's also got a new New Yorker blog, "Why I did It".

Editorial Cartoonist Donna Barstow Brings Fresh, Original Voice to UCLICK® Website

Kansas City, MO (February 24, 2009) - Editorial cartoonist and acclaimed blogger Donna Barstow is bringing her signature style to, the popular Uclick comic strip and editorial cartoon portal that is home to some of the nation’s most renowned cartoonists.

Barstow’s new feature will update two to three times per week, putting on full display the unique commentary that has made her cartoons a hit on the pages of widely-read newspapers and periodicals such as Parade, The New Yorker, Harvard Business Review, the Los Angeles Times, and Glamour, among others. She has 2 books in print of cartoons for women, and her cartoon on food has run for several years in mainstream and alternative papers, including Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Philadelphia Inquirer, Salt Lake Tribune, Albany Times Union, Pasadena Weekly, and more.

Barstow approaches her job as an editorial cartoonist in a way that differs from the political myopia that sometimes dominates the field.

“I try to see more of the positive in the news,” said Barstow. “It’s important to have a point of view, but does it have to be fatalistic? I try and bring light to a subject even though I might loathe it.”

While the focus of Barstow’s feature will usually fall on politics, the cartoonist expects a large dose of pop culture to work its way into the mix as well, all filtered through the lens of her own perspective.

“Living in Hollywood, I can’t help but be influenced by entertainment, and yes, sadly, the drama of it all,” said Barstow. “I’m originally from the East Coast, so I definitely see the conflict and layers in East vs. West coast culture! It’s a challenge I enjoy, letting my opinions be known.”

Barstow joins a star-studded lineup of editorial cartoonists on The site features 27 Pulitzer Prize winners, including Pat Oliphant, Mike Luckovich, Matt Davies, David Horsey, Mike Ramirez and more.

“Donna paints the world in shades most of us don’t even consider,” said Douglas Edwards, Uclick CEO. “She brings an original point of view and an instantly recognizable cartooning style to her work, not to mention her brilliant wit. She’s a great fit for the GoComics community.”

Check out Donna Barstow’s cartoons at is owned and operated by digital entertainment provider Uclick, America's #1 provider of comics on the web and on mobile phones.

UCLICK® is the leading digital entertainment provider of humor, comic strips, manga, graphic novels, editorial cartoons, and other content for desktop, web and mobile phones. Uclick is also the leading creator and distributor of crosswords, and other word and number puzzles. Partners featuring Uclick content include the leading consumer portals Yahoo!,, New York Times,,, CNN, USA Today, and AOL. Uclick features include the top brand franchises Garfield, Doonesbury, Calvin and Hobbes, Paul Frank, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, TOKYOPOP, USA Today, Pat Sajak, Wyland, and many more. Uclick creative content and services are available through the website, U.S. mobile phone operators, the iTunes App Store, and other distributors worldwide. UCLICK, LLC is a division of Andrews McMeel Universal, the leading newspaper syndicate and publisher of humor books and calendars in North America.

For more information on Uclick, visit

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Toad, a local gag cartoonist

Toad Toons is a site that I've just been tipped to, by the eponymous 'Toad.' He's been doing and posting a gag cartoon per day for years, and would appreciate people checking the site out.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Even Federal Computer Week's cartoonist is doing inauguration cartoons

John Klossner, in a post "You’re new around here, aren’t you?" Federal Computer Week's John Klossner blog Jan 13, 2009, does a couple of inauguration cartoons while noting, "Having never lived in the greater Washington, D.C., region, I've never experienced a presidential transition on the streets. From the stories I've heard, it sounds like every August/September in a college town (an experience I have had), only with better dressed people and less drinking (I'm referring to the college town). I imagine it helps that this happens only once every 4 or 8 years. Is it like giving birth, where you forget the pain, allowing you to go through it again?"

Yeah, it's something like that, John.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

OT: Mark Doeffinger cartoon blog

This one came over the transom a few days ago. I don't know Mark, nor where he's based, but with the market for a lot of cartoonists imploding, I figured there's no reason not to use a few electrons to try to help:

I just started a website which is also a blog of my cartoons. I update my cartoons 5 to 6 days per week. The address of my website is:

The cartoons are, I hope, witty and clever. If you like my cartoons, I would appreciate it if you would tell your readers about my website. I have been drawing cartoons for many years.

Many thanks.

Mark Doeffinger

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Dec 16: Gag cartoonist Mort Gerberg in town

NEXTBOOK Public Programs presents Mort Gerberg

Last Laughs: Cartoons About Aging, Retirement...and the Great Beyond
December 16, 7:30 pm
$9; Discount Member Price $6
Washington DCJCC, 1529 16th Street NW

Longtime New Yorker cartoonist Mort Gerberg has assembled an all-star cast of gifted and popular cartoonists to join him in this exclusive collection confronting, illuminating and celebrating the inevitabilities of life. Everything from cloning to cryogenics is tackled with humor and pathos. Gerberg has written, illustrated or edited nearly forty books, including his textbook, Cartooning: The Art and the Business. Gerberg will discuss his most recent collection as well as demonstrate his drawing process. He will also touch on his upcoming book The All-Jewish Cartoon Collection.

Reprinted from Review

"Be careful about taking this book on a long plane trip. From page to page you'll chuckle, you'll guffaw, you'll be seized with hysterical, uncontrollable laughter. Fellow passengers will be curious and you'll say (with tears streaming down your face) it's all about age and death. Fellow passengers might ask for a change of seats. You won't mind one bit as you become more and more helpless with laughter."
-- Frank McCourt, author of Angela's Ashes and Teacher Man

Click here to purchase tickets.

Thanks to Casey Shaw of USA Weekend for the tip!

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Irwin Caplan 1951 gag cartoon

This has nothing to do with ComicsDC, but I saw this Irwin Caplan gag cartoon on the back of a clipping from the International Herald Tribune, March 18, 1951 so I tossed it on the scanner. Enjoy.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Washington writer reviews new gag comics book on Nazis

See "Is It Kosher To Laugh At Swastikas?," by Menachem Wecker, Jewish Press April 9, 2008 for his review of We Have Ways of Making You Laugh: 120 Funny Swastika Cartoons by Sam Gross.