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‘Draw The Line Here’ cartoon book needs YOU!

January 24, 2015 in News

Cartoon of ink bottles by Jones for Draw The Line Here

CLICK IMAGE to go straight to the Crowdshed webpage and make your pledge NOW!

THE CROWDFUNDED cartoon book to raise money for the families of the Charlie Hebdo victims in Paris still needs your support!

Draw The Line Here is a totally unique collection of cartoons produced in the immediate aftermath of the terrorist killings by mostly British cartoonists including some of the biggest national newspaper names such as Martin Rowson and Dave Brown.

Cartoon by Dave Brown of Eiffel Tower for Draw The Line Here

The fundraising organisation Crowdshed needs £5,000 to be able to go ahead and produce what will be an extremely historically-important book join cartooning. So far we have only £1,490 and there are only 21 days of fundraising time left.

HALF THE MONEY RAISED WILL GO TO THE FAMILIES OF THE PARIS VICTIMS. The rest will go to English Pen who support freedom of speech campaigns around the world.

PCO Chairman Bill Stott says: “Legitimate charitable causes clamour for our support all the time, but this one must surely rate amongst THE most acute. We can still make the deadline, but ONLY if we get a truckload more pledges. So Google Draw the Line Here and give us your dosh! Please.”

No need to Google though, simply click straight through to the Crowdshed Draw The Line Here webpage HERE and give us your pledge in a few simple clicks.

Draw The Line Here cartoon book in aid of #jesuischarlie

January 15, 2015 in News

Draw-The-Line-Here-Cartoon-Book-Website

Please click in the image above to be able to submit your fund to this very worthwhile cause

 

DRAW THE LINE Here  is a crowdfunding venture launched by English Pen and the Professional Cartoonists’ Organisation with crowdfunding and promotion facilitated by Crowdshed.

English PEN is the founding centre of a worldwide writers’ association with 145 centres in more than 100 countries. They campaign to defend writers and readers in the UK and around the world whose human right to freedom of expression is at risk. CrowdShed is a new UK-based crowdfunding platform and hub. They connect and support people to help bring their ideas to life and create new funding opportunities. We want to bring about the democratisation of funding by educating and empowering every person in the crowd.

In the wake of the terrible events in Paris on 7th and 8th January, English Pen decided to do something to help contribute to the funds set up by Charlie Hebdo for the families of the victims and also to gain further support for their work campaigning for freedom of speech worldwide. The most obvious thing to do was to ask some of the best cartoonists in the UK to donate cartoons about the attack on freedom of speech by terrorists and to publish them in a book.

Draw The Line Here is that book and your generosity is sought in order to make it the worthwhile success that it ought to be.

Here are just a few of the cartoons that will appear in the book.

GO TO THE DRAW THE LINE HERE WEBPAGE HERE and, on behalf of cartoonists and writers everywhere, thank you all in advance.

A visit to the #Charlie Hebdo unity rally in Trafalgar Square

January 14, 2015 in News

ON SUNDAY 11th January, three members of the Professional Cartoonists’ Organisation attended the mass rally in sympathy with the French deaths connected to Charlie Hebdo magazine. The Surreal McCoy. Paul Baker and Simon Ellinas took on the roles of London correspondents for the day to experience a small part of the reaction to the tragic Paris event.

Nowhere near as large as the Paris Unity Rally, attended by many world leaders including our own David Cameron (but not, strangely, any prominent American delegates), the London event was quiet, contemplative and full of dignity. Many people brought placards and all were clustering around a growing pile of tributes in the form of flowers and artists’ pencils at the bottom of the steps inferno to the National Gallery.

The sides of the National Gallery were lit up with the French tricolour and the waters of the fountains changed from blue to white to red throughout.

Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the Liberal Democrats, Nick Clegg was there with his wife Miriam and was interviewed by ITN at the foot of Nelson’s Column. They didn’t manage to escape without having quick caricatures thrust at them.

Police and general security presence was very unnoticeable although the suspicion is that there must have been a number of plain-clothed policemen on alert throughout.

Charlie Hebdo cartoonists at work in 2006 – video

January 11, 2015 in News

Charlie Hebdo: The PCO’s point of view

January 8, 2015 in Comment

A PCO Committee-sanctioned article, composed in the immediate aftermath of yesterday’s murders of Charlie Hebdo journalists and other bystanders yesterday:

It is a cartoonist’s blessing and curse to be at the point of pen and pain when matters of free speech and offence come to town.

The murders at the the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris are as grotesque an act of zealotry that any group can carry out.

But there is, in our view, no reason for society in general, or cartoonists in particular, to beat themselves up unnecessarily about the acts of these criminals.

There was no obvious change in the long-term behaviour of cartoonists in Europe after the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten published its Prophet Muhammad cartoons in 2006. Despite the horror of what has happened in Paris today, we do not think this will or should change.

This is because, despite its healthy subversive streak, the drawing of opinion cartoons has always operated under the laws of the land  – and specifically under the hand of the editors who guard the publications for which we work.

All cartoonists who publish in print work under the system of checks and balances that is the editor. Control in our niche of journalism is just the same as written or broadcast journalism. Any cartoonists can tell that you that the experience of negotiation with an editor can be as blunt as a “No” or as joyful as “Publish and be damned”.

Charlie Hebdo knew all this when they republished the Muhammad cartoons. And in law, in France, they were able to publish just as they did.

In doing so, they deliberately challenged a convention in European and US publishing after the Danish controversy that the less that was said, the sooner all would be mended. They also knew that their act or republication would be global in a way that it wasn’t when Jyllands-Posten published the original work of the 12 freelance cartoonists more than eight years ago.

When provocations like this are easily read and shared – liked and retweeted across the globe – you have a vehicle for stoking a controversy of unparalleled power.

We are as fond of the Voltaire quote about defending the right to offend as the next cartoonists’ organisation, and there was and is a strong case to be made for the publication of the Danish cartoons as a statement or expression of free speech. But it did also potentially antagonise many millions of Muslims and it certainly highlighted Charlie Hebdo as a soft target. The publishers have been horribly caught out by their own boldness, at a great and bloody cost.

Distribution of information across the globe has killed comfortable assumptions and the cosy clichés of shared experience that allow the consequence-free poking of fun at subjects about which people can care deeply.

Every image matters when you have a global audience. The internet, that great invention of humanity, is very easily put to a purpose that does not aid humans.

Unmediated distribution of images in social media has been accompanied by the spread of tools to manipulate and edit other people’s photographs and cartoons. This has opened up a Pandora’s box of opportunity for misunderstanding, theft, outrage and offence – again, on a global scale.

At this awful moment we would like to send our deepest condolences and best wishes to all our colleagues in France.

In spite of all today’s horror, we know we shall shortly be raising a merrier hell with them all, making well-timed drawings about the lives we all lead in one shared and ever more connected world.

En avant!
The Professional Cartoonists’ Organisation represents the best of British cartoonists. Its website can be found at www.procartooninsts.org.
Avatar of Royston

by Royston

Cartoonist in gutsy new series

December 5, 2014 in General, Links, News

Adrian Teal Under the Knife
Procartoonists member Adrian Teal has started contributing cartoons and character design to a gruesome new medical history series on YouTube called Under The Knife.

Written and presented by Dr Lindsey Fitzharris and directed by Alex Anstey, the series is dedicated to the horrors of pre-anaesthetic surgery and early medicine. It combines traditional story-telling techniques with computer animation based on Teal artwork.

Adrian tells us: “The first video has had nearly 9,000 hits. Also, we’re raising funds to cover production costs via the crowdfunding site Patreon.”

Adrian Teal Under the Knife

You can support the series via Patreon here. And you can watch the videos on YouTube here. But be warned: with titles such as The Clockwork Saw, The Plague Doctor, above, and, er, Victorian Anti-Masturbation Devices, it is not for the faint of heart!

The sky is falling in

November 9, 2013 in Events, General, News

News that a satellite is descending to earth in an uncontrolled fashion reminds us that there’s nothing new under the sun – as these cartoons from Martin Minton – A cartoon novel by Ken Pyne show.

Cartoon_Life_© Ken_Pyne_@_procartoonists.org

Cartoon © Ken Pyne from Martin Minton - a cartoon novel @procartoonists.org

Satellite_Cartoon_©_Ken_Pyne_@procartoonists.org

Cartoon © Ken Pyne from Martin Minton - a cartoon novel @procartoonists.org

Ken told us:

Funny, I was only thinking of that book a couple of days ago in Waterstones. When it came out the publisher sent a blurb round saying it was a ‘Cartoon Novel’ and a book reviewer called me ‘pretentious’ for calling it that. How times have changed – now you can’t move around a book shop for ‘Graphic Novels’.

UK Professional Cartoonists

The Round-up

March 15, 2013 in General, Links, News

© Colin Whittock @Procartoonists.org

Our colleagues in the Cartoonists’ Club of Great Britain (CCGB) have produced The Little Red Nose-E-Book Of Cartoons in aid of Comic Relief. It features 101 cartoons by CCGB members, including the gag above by Colin Whittock, who is also a Procartoonists.org member. The e-book costs just £1.59 (with all proceeds going to the charity) and can be downloaded here.

Also to coincide with Comic Relief, Forbidden Planet asks comics professionals to pick their favourite humorous strips. The list includes the dark and desolate Viz strip, Drunken Bakers, drawn by Procartoonists.org member Lee Healey. Read the full article here and see if you agree with the selections.

Ralph Steadman, the world-renowned cartoonist and yet another of our members, is the subject of an upcoming exhibition at London’s Cartoon Museum. Steadman at 77 opens on 1 May. and runs until 21 July. Find more details here.

Ian Hislop and his frequent collaborator,  the cartoonist Nick Newman, have written a new film for BBC Two that focuses on a First World War forerunner to Private Eye. Read more here.

Finally, the illustrator Alex Mathers explains how he found himself drawing Google Doodles — arguably the most widely seen drawings in the world on any given day — and draws some useful conclusions. Read it here.

Ten things you might not know

about copyright

March 12, 2013 in General, News

Our man Rob Murray attended a recent talk by Silvia Baumgart of Own-it, based at the University of the Arts London (UAL). Own-it advises creative practitioners and small businesses on intellectual property matters.

Over to Rob:

The session focused in particular on copyright and the increasing need for artists and illustrators to protect their work in the online era.

Listed here are ten key facts about copyright that might either be news to you, or a useful refresher.

  1. Copyright is automatic – it does not need to be applied for or registered – and protects a creative work until 70 years after the creator’s year of death.
  2. You cannot copyright an idea – only the way in which that idea is expressed.

    © Rob Murray @ Procartoonists.org

  3. Moral rights, which come with copyright and give the creator the right to be credited as the author of a work, cannot be assigned to another party. But the creator can waive moral rights in writing. If assigning (selling) copyright to someone else, a creator should assert their moral rights.
  4. If a magazine “buys” a cartoon to appear in its pages, unless otherwise stated in writing it is buying a licence to be the first to publish it. This does not prevent the cartoonist selling the cartoon elsewhere at a later date, or using it for any other purpose.

    Matthew_Buck_Hack_Copyright_ARTWORK @ procartoonists.org

    © Matthew Buck Hack Cartoons @ Procartoonists.org

  5. When a freelancer is commissioned to produce a cartoon or illustration, he or she automatically holds the copyright unless otherwise agreed in writing.
  6. By contrast, if work is created during the course of your employment, your employer holds the copyright and you have no moral rights over the work.
  7. Design work is treated differently, and falls under design right rather than copyright. When a designer is commissioned to develop or create a product, the commissioner owns the unregistered design right in the UK — which protects the appearance of the product (excluding surface decoration) for 15 years from creation or ten years from first sale. As with copyright, it is automatic.

    Ideas cartoon by Royston Robertson

    © Royston Robertson @ Procartoonists.org

  8. An image being easily accessible — for example on the internet — is often taken to mean that it is in the public domain, but this is often not the case, even when the creator’s name is missing. An artwork is only “public domain” if the creator (or copyright holder) has declared so, or if the copyright has expired.
  9. Selling a physical object you have created (for example, the original artwork for a cartoon) does not mean you are permitting reproduction or dissemination. Unless formally agreed, the buyer does not have the right to reproduce or distribute the image (with the exception of advertising the resale of the artwork).
  10. As a general rule, the decision to assign all rights to a client should not be taken lightly, and the creator should agree a substantially larger fee than they would for granting a licence. Once intellectual property rights are sold, they cannot be taken back and the creator will never again be able to profit from licensing that piece of work.

Own-it offers free legal advice to help artists solve intellectual property issues. Visit the blog again soon for a look at some of Silvia’s recommendations for how to protect your work online and elsewhere.

The Round-up

February 24, 2013 in General, Links, News

 

© Bob Godfrey @Procartoonists.org

We are sad to note that Bob Godfrey, the much-loved cartoonist behind Roobarb and Custard (above) and the equally wonderful Henry’s Cat, has passed away at the age of 91. Obituaries for the Oscar-winning animator can be found at The Guardian, The Telegraph and the BBC. The Guardian also offers a guide to Godfrey’s career in clips. In a sad coincidence, Richard Briers – who narrated Roobarb – died last Sunday.

The Telegraph is celebrating 25 years of pocket cartoons by Matt Pritchett, with a series of short videos in which the cartoonist discusses his work and looks back over his career so far. Begin by finding out about Matt’s typical day; other clips look at his first front-page gag, the tricks of the trade, his favourite cartoon of 2013 thus far, and how he’s turning into one of his characters.

Jamie Smart has plans for a new children’s comic, initially to be made available online for free, in which all characters will be creator-owned. He is on the lookout for cartoonists to join his Moose Kid Comics project – for which he hopes to attract investors and subsequently launch in print form. Read more and find out how to get involved here.

Finally, a Google doodle on Friday celebrated what would have been the 88th birthday of Edward Gorey. See the doodle at full size here.