Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Everyone's going bananas over this ape thing!

Well, this is a blog about cartooning and my opinions and sometimes politics, so I guess I would be remiss if I didn't say something about the NY Post monkey cartoon.

If you haven't had the misfortune of seeing it, here it is:

A lot of people are pissed off about this cartoon, because they feel like it's racist. I can definitely see how it can be intepreted it that way, but I seriously doubt that was the cartoonist's intention. (Granted, Delonas doesn't have the greatest track record.)

That's not to say the cartoonist should get off the hook. I understand that when you're working under a tight deadline, you might not have the time to sit and consider every possible way a cartoon can be interpreted, and since you're dealing with images and not words, things can very easily be misunderstood. But for something like this, when it's very obvious that people (not to be confused with politicians, haha) are hurt and offended by what you've done, it's not good enough to sit there and say "Well, you're stupid because you don't understand my cartoon and I'm not a racist and that's not what I meant and blah, blah, blah." You need to apologize. And you need to be sincere about it.

I don't agree that Delonas should get fired, but that's mostly because I doubt that the Post would hire a new cartoonist to take his place. I think this is a great example of how powerful and important cartoons can be. It saddens me that someone who is fortunate enough to have a staff editorial cartoonist position would be so careless with his work, but like I said, mistakes happen. I'm also bothered by the fact that whenever a cartoonist or a cartoon gets in the news, it's because of something negative. And never that edgy, thought-provoking negative that cartoonists strive for.

It annoyed me so much when the Obama New Yorker cover got so much attention.

Since when is the New Yorker the go-to place for political cartoons? Satire just isn't their thing. So many people called it failed-satire, but I think it just wasn't the right venue for that kind of commentary. Had that been the cover of MAD Magazine, it would be a totally different story. I don't think the cartoon itself was bad, I just think it was a weird choice for a New Yorker cover.

The NY Post monkey cartoon IS failed satire. I get the concept, it wasn't particularly clever or funny, so just apologize for doing a stupid cartoon.

That being said, I wish people would write to their papers and praise good cartoons. Maybe instead of coming off as a liability, cartoons could once again be seen as an asset. Imagine that!

I'm a bad blogger, I'm a bad cartoonist, I'm a bad employee, I'm a bad human being!!

So I haven't been very good with the blogging lately. I'm sorry about that. I've had a lot on my mind lately and I've been pretty stressed out, so blogging seems to have fallen to the wayside.

Anyway, rather than bore you with the details of my pathetic life, I thought I'd share this wonderful cartoon by Keith Knight:

Isn't that great? It really puts things into perspective. Except I don't have a baby. I have a cat though...but it's not so cute when she bites my nose. Her teeth are sharp!

Monday, February 23, 2009

2nd mailing sent, and I don't know what to do!

Last week I sent out my second mailing for Berd. I'm not going to keep making posts like this, because I promised myself that I would send Berd
to five papers each week for the next year. So either you'll get tired
of hearing about every single mailing I send, or I'll run out of
papers to send stuff to.

I feel like I'm encountering problems already. I'm not
sure if I should call the papers and follow up to make sure they
received my packet, or if I should just accept their silence as a "no."
I probably picked the worst time in the history of printed media to
start sending out cartoons, so I feel like it would just be obnoxious
to call. On the other hand, maybe I could at least get some good

Maybe I'll call one or two and see how it goes. Or not. I don't want to be a pain.

Sorry, I haven't blogged in awhile so this particular entry sucks. I'm just
kind of thinking out loud. If you have any thoughts or input, it's
appreciated. But yeah, I just don't know what to do after I send out a

Anyone got any ideas?

Monday, February 16, 2009

My friends are a talented bunch.

My friends are so talented. Particularly Henrique Couto. He's funny, he's smart, he makes his own movies that are really good, he hosts his own podcast and he even started his own band:

But my favorite talent of his is his ability to cope with a crazy amount of pain:

How crazy is that?!

I told Henrique he needs to move out to California, sit around on some street corner and just wait to be discovered. You just wait. Give him five years and he'll be a household name. You heard it here first, folks!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

1st mailing

Last week I sent out my first-ever mailing for Berd. I hope it goes well. After I sent it out, I realized there was a lot I should have said about myself and about the comic that I left out.

Also, I don't have any information on my website aside from a link to this blog, so I'll need to start working on that.

If you came to this blog after receiving a mailing for Berd, thank you for taking the time to check out my work and learn more about me. I've been working as an editorial cartoonist at two Maryland papers, The Aegis and The Record, for the past three years. I am a member of the American Association of Editorial Cartoonists. Last year I won awards for cartooning and illustration from the MDDC Press Association.

I've worked on other cartooning projects during that time as well, but Berd is really the first one I've liked enough to send out to papers. In the summer of 2008, Berd came in 2nd place in the City Paper comics contest. I think it's a pretty versatile strip, and it's got a lot of potential for an alt weekly. Obviously it's a new strip, but I promise that if you give Berd a chance, you won't be disappointed.

Please don't hesitate to contact me if you think you'd like to run the strip. I really appreciate any feedback, so if you've got a suggestion for me, don't be shy! Just give me a call or shoot me an email.

Thanks again for checking out the strip!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Restoring mad science to its rightful place

You know I love comics, but very few actually make me lol. This week's Big Fat Whale is an exception to that rule.

Doesn't the government know that the economic and healthcare crisis, global warming and the entire Middle East conflict can all be solved with just two words? Time machine!

It's just as simple as that!

Monday, February 2, 2009

We interrupt this blog for a special message from Ean

My friend Ean just finished working on the new film Coraline. He sends along this message:

Dear Everyone,

The time has come and after more than two years Coraline is ready to be seen.

It would mean a lot to me if you all went to see it on February 6th. I can't possibly be there with all of you physically- but if you go see it that weekend, and think of me when you see two little man bears splashing in a fountain, freakish bat-dogs attacking children, or passive aggressive monsters cooking in Martha's kitchen- then I'll be there in spirit. (probably drawing little naked dog men).

To be honest I'm starting a bit of a campaign for this film. For this week. The week before opening. If you could all, just for this week, be like little elves for me, to help better spread the word on this film, that would be awesome. (I can't pay you, but I can sing little songs for you on your answering machine).

Word of mouth is extremely important on a film like this. SO please talk loudly about it in laundromats and grocery lines all week. Point at things on the street and shout, “Wow, that totally makes me think of that cool film Coraline starring Dakota Fanning and Teri Hatcher.” (It's really fun if you single out other people's children in this fashion.)

Please phone or e-mail extended family and people I don't know to tell them about this movie coming out this weekend (February 6th). Tell them that it's really awesome, that it's based on a best selling book for kids (by Neil Gaiman), and that other movies coming out that weekend give you eye cancer. (This could be true, and do you really want to put them in potential danger?)

If you work in a place with lots of people, let's say for instance, a school, college, or library- maybe you can declare this week “Coraline Week” and offer free suggestions to go see the movie on February 6th.

Show everyone this site I put up on my site, with collected trailers for the film. (including our new creepy one, you all should look too, because it's awesome).

(if you all crash it by doing a good job, you can always go to the official, and harder to navigate site)

I love you all and thank you all for your support and guidance.

Best wishes!

-eAN (:

What are you waiting for? You heard the man, go see Coraline!