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by Jonesy

Cartoonists discuss the big issue: Europe

June 21, 2016 in General


Joey Tempest, lead singer and owner of the definitive ‘poodle-rock’ hairstyle

Tune into New Yorker cartoonist Joe Dator’s Blog, ‘Songs You’re Sick Of’, and enjoy the wonderfully funny ramblings of the host and his guest, our very own The Surreal McCoy (‘The’ to her friends), as they analyse Europe’s most famous song: The Final Countdown.

The Surreal McCoy leads a double life, being a professional musician as well as a cartoonist and she straps on her accordion for the occasion and learns the chords and a smattering Swedish into the bargain. What a trouper.


An early laptop

Mick Jagger’s leotards, the effect of weightlessness on 1980′s hair and meaty bun-cake houses are just three topics that spring out of the conversation.

Beef Burger 110

The above can be found in ‘meaty bun-cake houses’ apparently

The undoubted highlight, however, is The Surreal McCoy’s performance of The Final Countdown. An immeasurable improvement on the original, it features ‘The’ (remember – only to friends) on accordion, accompanied by Inga, Swedish Google translator, on vocals. A tour de force that, once heard, can never be forgotten.

Thirty minutes of fun await on Joe Dator’s ‘Songs You’re Sick Of”.


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by Jonesy

‘Not the RA Summer Exhibition’ Private View

June 12, 2016 in General


Standing room only – © Kasia Kowalska

Bill Stott, PCO Chairleg, writes:

7/6/16, Chris Beetles Gallery, Ryder St., thatLondon.

By gum it was ‘ot ! And by the time I and my travelling companion, Jenny, Sheila’s daughter, arrived at the gallery at about five after six, the temperature inside the gallery was such that dentures were melting and Chris and Alex’s free champagne was disappearing double quick. Little red spots were appearing on cartoons, too.


Bill Stott with New Yorker cartoonist Bob Eckstein – © The Surreal McCoy


© Jonathan Cusick                           © Chris Madden                                   

It was really good to see so many PCO types there; most of the Committee, Kasia and kamera, Dr Davey – in excellent form – Ross Thompson and his lady, plus Mike Turner, Ken Pyne, Dave Brown, Herne Bay Roller Robertson and lots, lots more. What was even better was seeing PCO work displayed alongside and on the same footing as art which isn’t supposed to make you laugh.


Jen Kuehnle, Cathy Simpson, Bob Eckhart, Carol Isaacs & Bill Stott – © Kasia Kowalska

Anthony Green R.A. kicked the whole thing off by making many and various artistic observations including what its like to paint a nude pic of your mother-in-law (cue collapse of stout party).


Royston Robertson & Jeremy Banx indulge in a spot of star gazing – © The Surreal McCoy


Patrick Holden, Cartoon Museum trustee, enjoys the Heston Blumenthal hors d’oeuvres – © Mika Schick

ken pyne_mike turner

Two master cartoonists, Ken Pyne & Mike Turner, enjoying a chat – © Kasia Kowalska

Speechifying over, there was much meeting and greeting. I got the impression that the cartoon area remained the most full all evening.Then around 8.45 it was over the road-ish to a very narrow pub – so narrow in fact that the Scotch Eggs were oval. Jenny is an NHS psychiatrist and had her notes confiscated.


Bill & Royston spot a publisher – © Mika Schick

So, all in all, a successful evening, and Messrs Beetles were pleased too. This sort of show is something of a first, I think, and who knows, it may not be the last.


© Rupert Besley

More of the exhibits, all available for purchase, can be viewed here on the Chris Beetles Gallery website.

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by Jonesy

Funny goings on with Weird Fish…

June 8, 2016 in General


The winning design © Tim Harries

Instigated by our friend from the CCGB, Rich Skipworth, and casual clothing manufacturer Weird Fish, a competition has just taken place to design a T-shirt for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds and we’re delighted to say that two PCO members made it onto the victors’ podium.

PURPLE CRANE  Brighty post

Prince, as you’ve never seen him before © Steve Bright

Tim Harries hooked the number one spot with his wonderful ‘Raiders of the Lost Lark’ design and Steve Bright was joint runner-up with his remarkable avian Prince image ‘Purple Crane’.

Tim’s prize isn’t to be sniffed at either: he becomes a regular player in the Weird Fish cartoonist team, and nets a cool £250 worth of clobber into the bargain. Steve landed a Weird Fish clothing voucher for his efforts too so, all in all, a good catch for the PCO duo.


One of Tim’s alternative efforts © Tim Harries

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by Jonesy

The master speaks…

June 8, 2016 in General


The National Cartoonists Society has released a 40-minute video profiling legendary cartoonist and illustrator Mort Drucker.

In a warm and enthralling conversation, the pair reflected on Mort’s path from his teenage days as a comic book assistant artist to his rapid ascent to the pinnacle of the profession, and discussed the attention to detail and quest for cartooning excellence that has been the hallmark of Drucker’s illustrious career.

The filmed interview can be viewed on the National Cartoonists Society website or here on Bado’s Blog.



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by Jonesy

Chris Beetles Gallery & the PCO present ‘NOT the RA Summer Exhibition’

May 30, 2016 in General


© Richard Jolley

To coincide with the opening of the Royal Academy’s annual Summer Exhibition, twenty seven of Britain’s finest cartoonists have rallied to provide a satirical take on the history of art. With over seventy five original works for sale, the show is a celebration of history’s masterpieces, and an antidote to the neon, taxidermy and bed linen of contemporary art’s more notorious movements.


© Roger Penwill


© The Surreal McCoy

Cartoonists include:
Sally Artz – Banx (Jeremy Banks) – Rupert Besley – Jonathan Cusick
Andy Davey – Wilbur Dawbarn – Neil Dishington – Noel Ford
Richard Jolley – Jonesy (Steve Jones) – Larry (Terence Parkes)
Chris Madden – Glenn Marshall – Ed McLachlan – Rob Murray
Fran Orford – Roger Penwill – Matt Percival – Ken Pyne
Royston Robertson – Tim Ruscoe – Cathy Simpson – Bill Stott
The Surreal McCoy – Ross Thomson – Mike Turner
Kipper Williams – Mike Williams



© Mike Williams



© Royston Robertson


© Bill Stott

It all kicks off with a Champagne Private View on Tuesday 7 June, 6-8pm. The revolt will be led by Bill Stott, chairman of the Professional Cartoonists’ Organisation, who will open the show with Chris Beetles at 7pm.


© Rupert Besley


© Jonathan Cusick

‘NOT the RA Summer Exhibition’ runs from 7th June throughout the summer.

Chris Beetles Gallery is open Monday – Saturday, 10am – 5.30pm

You can view more of the work – all available for immediate purchase – here on the Chris Beetles Gallery website.

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FIZZERS: 10 years of caricature

May 27, 2016 in General

Terry Anderson

PCO member Terry Anderson with some of his superb caricatures

The Scottish Cartoon Art Studio’s collection of caricatures, Fizzers®, is a decade old this year and the subject of a retrospective show at the People’s Palace & Winter Gardens, Glasgow. Studio Co-ordinator and PCO Member Terry Anderson explains how it all came about.

After years receiving cordial invitations to attend a small group from the Studio decided to go to St.Just-le-Martel for their annual cartoon Salon in 2001. We returned in force the following year with our full team as well as the top Scottish newspaper cartoonist Steven Camley and world class comic book artist Frank Quitely.

Preview night

Preview night in Glasgow

It’s safe to say that everyone’s heads were turned by the quality and diversity of work we were exposed to, in particular the caricatures by artists as different as Jean Mulatier whose coloured pencil work lends realistic lustre to flesh and hair, or Gibo, able to boil a likeness down to just a few fat pen strokes.

RICHARD AYOADE (Chris Sommerville)

Richard Ayoade © Chris Somerville

The widespread popularity of this non-editorial, apolitical mode of caricature was news to us and very exciting. Immediately we began to speculate on what we could do in the same vein. After a few false starts we started calling these caricatures “Fizzers”, a Glaswegian variation of fizzog, itself is a corruption of the French visage and so a nod to both our subject and inspiration.

Fizzers was originally conceived as a book of caricatures of notable Scots. As well as wishing to make a mark in our own backyard this was a tactical move. Practically every caricaturist under the sun has a Mr Bean or Beatles piece to show you. Few if any have tackled the cast of Still Game or local heroes such as Benny Lynch.

Studio team

The Studio Team line up

The project became a two headed beast after being brought to the attention of the director at one of the country’s most prestigious art venues, who had publicly bemoaned a lack of work portraying contemporary faces. Hence when Fizzers debuted in 2006 it did so with both a book published by Mercat Press and an exhibition at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh.

Since then further shows of various sizes have followed and the scope of Fizzers has broadened. For example my colleague Chris Sommerville has concentrated on top international footballers in recent years. When Doctor Who‘s fiftieth anniversary rolled around we took the opportunity to draw each actor who played the title role. And when David Bowie passed away a few months ago it was once of those rare instances when a single figure could present a different face to each caricaturist in our group.

MARC BOLAN (Brian Flynn)

Marc Bolan © Brian Flynn

So as we prepared to mount a tenth anniversary exhibition and raided our collection of well over 400 caricatures – created by Chris and myself as well as Brian Flynn, Derek Gray and Tommy Sommerville – we were able to include truly world famous personalities as well as our usual tributes to figures dear to Glasgow, appropriate since our venue is the People’s Palace, the museum of the city’s social history.

Elaine C Smith

Elaine C. Smith and caricature © Derek Gray

Fizzers: 10 Years of Caricature opens this weekend and will run until the end of March. It’s a major undertaking and we’re very pleased to have been paid such a compliment by the staff at the museum. Entry is free and it’s open every day except Mondays. For more details, including workshops and talks that will be occurring throughout the coming year, please visit the Scottish Cartoons website and the Glasgow Museums site.




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The ins and outs of Europe through the eyes of Kipper Williams

May 20, 2016 in General


© Kipper Williams

The Prime Minister calls it the most important decision of our time. Many are worried, some couldn’t care less. But this summer the debate on Europe is the centre of national conversation, so it’s with perfect comedy timing that Amberley are publishing Kipper Williams’ take on the Euro debate ahead of the 23 June referendum.

From Brussels’ red tape to tax dodging corporations, batty nationalists to Machiavellian Europhiles, from triumph to farce – and back – Kipper Williams finds all the ingredients for comedy in his new book, ‘IN or OUT? Europe in Cartoons’.


Award winning cartoonist Kipper Williams

PCO member Kipper is one of this country’s foremost political cartoonists and has been published in The Spectator, The Guardian, The Sunday Times, Private Eye and Country Life, among others. He has also provided illustrations for a number of books, including Bill Bryson’s ‘A Short History of Nearly Everything’.

‘IN or OUT’ looks like it ticks all the discerning cartoonophile’s boxes, regardless of which one they’ll be ticking come 23 June.


© Kipper Williams

Kipper’s book is available now in paperback at £8.99.

For more information call Amberley’s Hazel Kayes on 01453 847 813 or email h.kayes@amberley-books.com








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Martin Rowson retrospective at the Ladywell Gallery

May 19, 2016 in General


Writer, iconoclast, atheist, zoo enthusiast, cook, PCO member and long-time resident of Lewisham are just a few of the things Martin Rowson can lay claim to being. However Martin is best known for the brilliance of his political cartooning skills and the Ladywell Gallery is holding an exhibition ‘To Hell. In a Handcart: A retrospective of Cartoons by Martin Rowson, 1986 – 2016′ as part of Brockley Max 2016.


The retrospective features the multi-award winning cartoonist’s work from The Guardian, Daily Mirror, The Morning Star, Sunday Today, Independent on Sunday, The Times, The Scotsman, Tribune, The Londoner, Time Out and many other publications, all of which is for sale.

Preview Night: Wednesday 25th May 2016 from 6.30pm
Exhibition: 26th May – 30th June 2016
12pm to 6pm daily (free entry)

More details and examples of the work to be shown in the Martin Rowson retrospective can be found here on the Ladywell Gallery website.


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Chris Beetles Gallery hosts exhibition in support of House of Illustration

May 11, 2016 in General


The Director and Trustees of House of Illustration together with Chris Beetles are exhibiting and selling of works from the 2008 exhibition What Are You Like? to raise funds for House of Illustration.
Chis Beetles is very generously waiving all fees and opening the exhibition with a champagne private view on Thursday 19 May. What Are You Like? will run until Sunday 22 May 2016.
This is a unique opportunity to purchase original works that were produced in 2008 by an extraordinary roll call of artist-illustrators, painters, designers and public figures for whom drawing is important. Each work is autobiographical, based on the Victorian parlour game in which players were asked to describe themselves through a series of drawings of their favourite things.
The original exhibition toured to ten different museums and galleries around the UK, finally coming to an end in 2014, by which time it had been seen by almost half a million people. The exhibition anticipated the opening of House of Illustration in Granary Square in July 2014, and the contributors have very generously agreed for their work to be sold to enable the organisation to continue to pursue its enterprising exhibition programme, to extend its illustration-led learning work and to promote new illustration talent.
House of Illustration receives no public funding and so is entirely reliant each year on fundraising.The original works in the exhibition include pieces by artists Quentin Blake, Posy Simmonds, Steven Appleby and Peter Brookes as well as musicians Eric Clapton and Brian Eno.
All works will be exhibited and can be purchased online now. Anyone wishing to buy can contact the Chris Beetles Gallery, or Tracy French at House of Illustration: tracy.french@houseofillustration.org.uk
Chris Beetles Gallery address is 8 & 10 Ryder Street, St James’s, London SW1Y 6QB
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Mario Miranda, India’s cartooning genius

May 9, 2016 in General


A must see article on the BBC website by Pamela D’Mello highlights the Indian state of Goa’s celebrations to mark the 90th birth anniversary of one of the country’s best-known cartoonists and illustrators, Mario Miranda.


Pamela D’Mello writes:

Mario’s warm-hearted, often comic drawings of local characters and culture helped to popularise his native state, Goa, both across India and overseas. He died in 2011.

The Mario Gallery and Museum has published Miranda’s 1949 diaries, which depict his student life as a 22-year-old in the city of Mumbai.

A free musical concert, and an exhibition of 74 of his original and print works are on display at an art gallery in Goa’s capital Panjim, as part of the celebrations.


To read Pamela D’Mello’s article in full and see more of Mario Miranda’s wonderful work, visit the BBC website.