You are browsing the archive for 2012.

Pick a president, any president

October 11, 2012 in General, News

The four yearly festival of politics delivered by the American presidential election is in full swing and this time it is also bringing innovation from the US cartoonist Ann Telnaes.

Ann_Telnaes_PotusPick @procartoonists.org

© Ann Telnaes @ Procartoonists.org

Ann has made a purpose-built app for the duration of the campaign called Potuspick.com. For the record, Potus is the the abbreviation for President of the United States.

For this project Ann isn’t working with her regular employer at the Washington Post and is instead selling the bespoke animation app direct through the Apple iTunes store.

She kindly agreed to answer a few questions from us about it:

What size of readership are you going to need at 69p per app download?

My partner (Sara Thaves of the Cartoonist Group) doesn’t really have any expectation of making a profit.  I don’t know about the UK, but app development is still an expensive endeavour in the States.  It’s at the stage where developing websites were in the beginning; now of course one can create a website for practically nothing.  My intention was to explore another avenue for editorial cartooning, to create an interactive editorial cartoon.

Are you upping production for the duration of the campaign?

Since I use actual audio from Obama and Romney, it would be ideal  to keep adding audio as soon as it leaves their mouths, but because of the cost we have no plans to. Obviously this app only has a shelf life until November 6 [polling day].

Which tools do you use to animate?
I still hand draw my animation poses, hand ink, then colour in Photoshop.  I then use Flash for production work.
Ann added:
If any of your UK colleagues express an interest in wanting to do one of these types of apps, please have them talk to me first.  The whole process was a bumpy road, both from dealing with app developers (we had two) and the Apple approval process.
Given that younger readers get their news for the most part exclusively online, here is another platform for editorial cartoonists to consider.  I’d like to stress, though, that this is not a game – the app still reflects my point of view (as an editorial cartoon should).
If you would like to ask Ann a question please do so in the comments below, as she has promised to check in here and try to answer them.

Big Draw 2012: The compere tweets

October 2, 2012 in Comment, Events, News

The final word on this year’s Big Draw launch goes to Libby Purves, journalist, broadcaster, compere of the event and Procartoonists.org patron, who sent us this dispatch from the front line of the Battle of Cartoonists

Libby Purves

Libby Purves files her Twitter report at the V&A

I may not be a trained war correspondent but here goes: In that echoing temple of Papal tapestry-based art, the Raphael Room at the V&A, the Battle of the Cartoonists was duly joined last Sunday. Given the utter impossibility of commentating in an acoustic like a giant’s bathroom,  after the initial draw for subjects – and the scuttle of massed cartoonists towards the free felt markers – I resolved to chronicle it on Twitter.

Someone had to. It is not every day (thank goodness) that you see, beneath sombre Biblical scenes, the wild-eyed geniuses of Private Eye, the Telegraph, the Guardian/Observer, Big Girls Drawers, Readers Digest, Procartoonists.org and the soaraway Sun gathered together in a sort of stone barn.

They were all fiercely at it, fending off swirling crowds of public, and working round not only the Stygian gloom of the gallery but dozens of small, inquisitive fingers groping at the side of their canvases. For the V&A on a Sunday, frankly, is always a bit like a middle-class family version of the last 20 minutes of the Roman Empire, with brats tearing round, lying on the mosaic floor drawing their own pictures, and intermittently going out to fall into the fountain and come back soggy but unbowed.

Libby Purves_2 at the Big Draw 2012 @procartoonists.org

Big Girls Drawers spent some time decorating their table with enormous knickers, while the rest knuckled down to sketching and muttering and stealing one another’s pens. The girls got The Healing of the Lame Man, the Telegraph The Conversion of the Proconsul, Private Eye got St Paul at Athens, the Guardianista faction The Death of Ananias, Readers’ Digest The Draught of Fishes and The Sun got Christ’s Charge to Peter.

The Procartoonists team rather got the short straw with The Sacrifice of Lystra. This involved members of the public – and the commentator – sidling up to them with “Who?” [Ed’s note: It’s actually AT Lystra, but it was very dark in the room!] and wondering if it had anything to do with Lycra, therefore the Olympics, therefore something we had heard of.

So on it went, good-humoured and frenetic, and on went the tweets:

“Honeysett & co have given St Paul three toes. PCO team working Will and Kate and Pope into Bible scene”

“Telegraph team huffily say Proconsul themes are secret. Readers Digest are drawing a dog. Andy Davey of the Sun drawing manically, subject as yet unclear”

“Big Girls Drawers team just added fab corgi joke. I love cartoonists”

“330 pm. Brilliant. Adults and kids now lying on cold stone floor drawing their own cartoons. Professionals battle on.”

“Aha! Everyone breaking out colours now. And Daleks. And Harry’s bum. Private Eye v funny already”

“Guardian team being impeded by small children. Excellent temper-management. Kipper on fire!”

“Hmm NHS satire creeping in to Healing of the Lame banner. Telegraph team having Ionic columns pawed by infants”

“Sun team on Harry gags. Guardian too. Procartoonists gone insanely Biblical. Telegraph got good V&A in-joke”

“There are even Ninja Turtle jokes! From Readers Digest! Not many national art events span such cultural richness”

“5 mins to go. Huge variety of styles from stark b&w to exuberant larkiness”

And then there was the judging.

Popular cheering and clapping having been banned by anxious curators, in case dust was dislodged and damaged the Raphaels, the Big Draw decided the clever thing would be to get people to cluster round their favourite and see who had most.

This profoundly, confusingly, almost Old-Labourishly block-vote system proved unreliable and, given the loud cheering that happened anyway, really quite suitably absurd. Private Eye won. But actually, everyone did.

Libby Purves_3 at the Big Draw 2012 @procartoonists.org

Pictures from The Big Draw 2012

October 1, 2012 in Events, General, News


Photographer at The Big Draw 2012. Image © Mika Schick @ procartoonists.org

The Big Draw 2012: Photographer. Image © Mika Schick @ Procartoonists.org

Yesterday saw the launch of The Big Draw 2012 and many of our members were at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London to kick off the month-long campaign. These few photos feature the Battle of the Cartoonists which was held in the huge Raphael Room at the museum. We’ll be publishing a full report on the day on Tuesday.

The Big Draw 2012 Tools of the trade. Image © Mika Schick @ procartoonists.org

The Big Draw 2012: Tools of the trade. Image © Mika Schick @ Procartoonists.org

The Big Draw 2012 detail. Image © Mika Schick @ Procartoonists.org

The Big Draw 2012. Image © Mika Schick @ Procartoonists.org

Procartoonists.org banner at The Big Draw 2012

Banner at The Big Draw 2012. Image © Mika Schick @ Procartoonists.org

Procartoonists.org  The Big Draw 2012 The Private Eye team
The Big Draw 2012: The Private Eye team. Image © Mika Schick @ Procartoonists.org

There’s also a profusion of faces and drawings from the day available here and also on Facebook, if you use it.

The Big Draw: who’s drawing?

September 26, 2012 in Events, General, News

Bloghorn at the Big Draw from the Campaign for Drawing

Here’s the full list of cartoonist combatants in the Battle of the Cartoonists at this weekend’s Big Draw, Big Make launch event.

Compere Libby Purves of the oh-so-neutral Times newspaper will be keeping order. In a brief spot of self-congratulatory parping from our resident Foghorn, Procartoonists.org has members in all seven of the teams.

  • Big Girls Drawers Chichi Parish (captain), The Surreal McCoy, Kathryn Lamb, Rosie Brooks
  • Guardian/Observer Kipper Williams (c), Dave Simonds, Nicola Jennings, Harry Venning
  • Readers’ Digest Steve Way (c), Simon Meyrick Jones, Nathan Ariss, Royston Robertson
  • Procartoonists.org Pete Dredge (non playing c), William Rudling, Kate Scurfield, Guy Venables, Gerard Whyman
  • The Sun Andy Davey (c), Clive Goddard, Tim Harries
  • Private Eye Tony Rushton (non playing c), Martin Honeysett, Andrew Birch, Simon Pearsall, Henry Davies
  • The Telegraph Patrick Blower (c), Charles Peattie, Matthew Buck Hack Cartoons, John Springs
And of course there are also the free cartoon workshops we wrote about yesterday and the attraction of a talk by the master caricaturist Gerald Scarfe. Don’t miss any of it.
Big Draw, Big Make details
See you there!

Battle of the Cartoonists 2012: Bring it on!

September 24, 2012 in Comment, Events, News

Can London take any more excitement? First the Olympics, then the Paralympics, now the Pen-and-ink-ics! Andrew Birch, Private Eye cartoonist and Procartoonists.org member, writes:

Raphael's Death of Ananias @procartoonists

Raphael's Death of Ananias @ Procartoonists.org

This Sunday (September 30) at 2pm, seven teams of Britain’s best cartoonists will gather in The Raphael Room at the Victoria and Albert Museum in The Battle of The Cartoonists.

Half an hour before the start of play, the teams – The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Sun, Private Eye (Hoorah!), Big Girls Drawers, Reader’s Digest and Procartoonists.org  – will each be allotted one of Raphael’s seven massive cartoons hanging on the walls to inspire them, and will draw something connected with it (or maybe not) on a great big banner.

Two and a half hours later, the completed (or maybe not) banners will be shown to the assembled throng, and the winner will be the one that gets the most applause.

Light-hearted stuff, you say? Think again! Previous years have seen skullduggery, blatant cheating, tantrums, verbal and physical assaults, kidnapping and arson as passions run high and the ink runs like blood.

Cartoonist contestant at Battle of the Cartoonists @procartoonists.org

Contestant (possibly)

Members of the Royal family, top politicians, celebrities  and foreign dignitaries are all people who might well be there – so make sure you arrive early!

Editor adds: Our thanks to Andrew for writing the above.

Event site: The Raphael Room at the Victoria and Albert Museum – The Battle of The Cartoonists.

Organisers and friends of Procartoonists.org: The Campaign for Drawing 

Reading: What WAS a cartoon

Personal Bests: Olympics in cartoons

July 25, 2012 in General, News

The London Olympics are here and throughout the event we will be giving you the cartoons from Personal Bests, the main exhibition from the Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival of 2011, which had the sporting theme.

Procartoonists.org Olympics 2012 Personal Bests Cartoons. All artwork is © of the named artist

Shown at UK Professional Cartoonists' Organisation: Procartoonists.org

The selling exhibition was a popular hit and the cartoons have been in a travelling exhibition since. We’ll be posting regular sporting laughs here during the course of the games,  starting this Friday.

And of course, you can see more great work by the cartoonists who showed at  the exhibition in our portfolios.

Diamond Jubilation

June 1, 2012 in Comment, General

Procartoonists.org_Imagining_the_Diamond_Jubilee © Bill Stott @ procartoonists.org

© Bill Stott @ Procartoonists.org

How one’s Diamond Jubilee might get imagineered.
“ OK. Ideas. Royal Progress. Any? Toby. Yes?”
“Well, erm, they’re both well, erm, getting on a bit, yeah?”
“We know that Toby – ergo the Diamond bit in Jubilee. ”
“Yes, well, erm, I thought that, well, and I mean, well, perish the thought … ”
“That’s four wells Toby.”
“Gosh, sorry, yes, erm, I thought we could get ‘em on a sort of barge thing on the river.”
“Hmmm. Barge, river, yes, good, good. Didn’t the other Elizabeth do this? We’re listening Tobes”
“Erm, well, sorry, but if anything sort of untoward happens, like the, erm, you know, the dying thing, well, they’d be too far away from the bank for anybody to notice. Need strapping in, of course. Maybe a bit of string to keep the old hand waving.”
“Toby, that is mega, and I mean mega! Jocasta! Miles! Make it so! Barge on the river! Brilliant! And if the worst happens, we could have a burial at sea! How bloody royal is THAT? Head of THE maritime nation! Slumbering in the deep! God, this knocks the Falklands into a cocked hat! Get Dave on the blower and tell him he’s safe for another term!”
Imagineering by Bill Stott. You might also enjoy a timely look back at our coverage of the Cartoon Museum’s excellent Her Maj show from earlier this year.

Picture this: the 2012 Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival

April 25, 2012 in Events, News

Huw Aaron drawing

Huw Aaron works on a rather complex Big Board in the Market Square

We promised you more coverage of this year’s Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival, so here is a visual feast. This highlights many of the events held for the public, and shows that even the erratic weather could not dampen spirits.

Hunt Emerson draws a Big Board

Hunt Emerson gets colourful with his board, creating "The Miracle of Flight"

Cathy Simpson cartoon workshop

Cathy Simpson hosts a cartoon workshop for children at the Wildlife Trust

The Melodrawma

Music, performance and live drawing in the Melodrawma in the Market Square. From left to right, Bill Stott, Pete Dredge and Noel Ford

Alex Lester, Libby Purves, Gill Hudson

Radio 2's Alex Lester, the writer and broadcaster Libby Purves, and the Reader's Digest editor Gill Hudson are all Shrewsbury supporters. Also in attendance was Martin Wainwright, northern editor of The Guardian

Reader's Digest stall

Reader's Digest ran a "Beat the Cartoonist" caption competition for the second year running

Humurals exhibition

The Humurals, an instant cartoon exhibition at the Market Hall. Tim Harries thinks of something to draw; Matt Buck utilises his surroundings

Huw Aaron Big Board

A look at Huw Aaron's finished Big Board, entitled "973 well-dressed gentlemen chasing a balloon". We didn't count

Pictures by Nathan Ariss, Matt Buck, Nicolette Petersen, Rich Skipworth and Gerard Whyman.

The festival also known as #shrews12

April 23, 2012 in Events, News

Scenes from the Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival

Another Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival has been and gone, and Procartoonists.org members were there in force adding to a weekend of drawing and superb fun.

We’ll have more on the festival as the pictures and thoughts come in, once everyone has recovered. But in the meantime … lots of us involved in the event, and others, were tweeting about #shrews12 throughout the weekend and posting pictures, more than ever before, and you can read a round-up of that coverage below or online.

Speed painting at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival

April 18, 2012 in Events, General


The 2012 edition of the festival starts this weekend – 20-22nd April 2012