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by Royston

Herne Bay Cartoon Festival 2016

July 24, 2016 in Events, General, News

Herne Bay Cartoon Festival 2016
The fourth Herne Bay Cartoon Festival takes place next month. The festival’s flagship live event will be held, as usual, in the Bandstand on the seafront, on Sunday 31 July.

More than 20 cartoonists from all over the country will be there to draw big-board cartoons, cartoon murals, caricatures and to host workshops. There will also be opportunities for the public to release their inner cartoonists and a few surprises and other general silliness.

The main festival exhibition, Postcards from the Seaside, is currently being put together and will feature cartoons all about the seaside, many offering modern spins on the classic saucy seaside postcards drawn by the likes of Donald McGill, much as the Independent cartoonist Dave Brown has done in the brilliant poster, above.

The exhibition opens at the Beach Creative gallery on Tuesday 26 July and runs until Sunday 14 August.

There will also be an exhibition of the work of the Punch cartoonist David Hawker, who died last August. Original cartoons by Hawker, who specialised in poking fun at petty middle-class concerns, can be seen at the Bay Art Gallery, on the same dates as the Beach Creative show.

Giles at the Seaside

Kicking off the festival, from Saturday 2 July, the Seaside Museum will host the exhibition Giles at the Seaside. Featuring a selection of seaside-themed cartoons by the much-loved Daily Express cartoonist, and spanning more than five decades, it is run in conjunction with the British Cartoon Archive in Canterbury.

This year also sees the launch of the festival’s first East Kent Young Cartoonists competition. There will be prizes for the winners and the best entries will be displayed during the festival.

To link in with that, there will be cartoon workshops at the Seaside Museum on 9 July, with myself and fellow PCO member Des Buckley.

Herne Bay Cartoon Workshop

And there’s more … but it’s all still being worked out. For updates follow @HBCartoonFest on Twitter or go to Facebook.com/HBCartoonFest

The Herne Bay Cartoon Festival is sponsored by the Professional Cartoonists Organisation and supported using public funding by Arts Council England.

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The Round-up

October 14, 2014 in Events, General, Links, News

© Viz for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival

© Viz for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival

The Lakes International Comic Art Festival starts this Friday, 17 October, and runs through the weekend. Taking place in Kendal, it features talks, panels, workshops, screenings and more for cartoon and comic enthusiasts of all ages.

Those appearing at the event include creators of graphic novels, kids’ comics and newspaper strips, such as Dave Gibbons, Scott McCloud, Sarah McIntyre, Eddie Campbell and Stephen Collins along with cartoonists from The Phoenix and Viz. The latter’s promotional image, above, is a cheeky Fat Slags parody of the British Library’s Comics Unmasked exhibition poster.

A new exhibition called Hogarth’s London opens at the Cartoon Museum in London next week (22 October). It will feature William Hogarth’s images of the London of 250 years ago, both the highs and lows, which are some of the most recognisable pictures in the city’s history.

As usual the musuem will have a series of events to tie in with is main exhibition (which runs unril 18 January) including and evening of Baroque music and dance, gin, beer (and some cartooning) called The Hogarth Hop

"The postcards down here are positively disgusting! I must send you one!" Cartoon by Donald McGill

“The postcards down here are positively disgusting! I must send you one!” Cartoon by Donald McGill

Also opening on 22 October at the Chris Beetles Gallery in St James’s, is a new selling exhibition of original artwork by Donald McGill, the acknowledged master of the saucy seaside postcard who was dubbed “the Picasso of the pier” by Dennis Potter. The show, which features more than 100 cartoons, runs until 8 November and ties in with a new biography of McGill by Bernard Crossley.

Also also on 22 October (busy day), Procartoonists member Chris Burke can be seen drawing and painting live at The Porterhouse in Covent Garden, in an event called Turner on the Terrace to promote the release of the new Mike Leigh film about the great artist (Turner that is, not Chris Burke). More details here.

Finally, our thoughts go out to the family of the cartoonist Bryan Reading who has died, aged 79, after battling cancer. He was a friend of many Procartoonists members and is remembered as a very funny cartoonist and a master draughtsman, as this cartoon shows.

"But Arthur, you could land in a very unfashionable postal district." Cartoon by Bryan Reading

Cartoon by Bryan Reading

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101 reasons to visit Cartoon Museum

November 1, 2011 in Events

101 Cartoonists poster

An exhibition called One Hundred and One Cartoonists is at the Cartoon Museum in London from Thursday 3 November.

It features cartoons, comics and caricatures from the collection of Luke Gertler, who has been collecting original cartoon artwork for more than 50 years.

On display will be works by H.M. Bateman, Max Beerbohm, Giles, David Low, Donald McGill, Thomas Rowlandson, Ronald Searle, John Tenniel and Dudley D. Watkins, among many others.

Asked what drew him to the cartoons he chose for his collection of more than 800 images, Luke Gertler told the Cartoon Museum newsletter:

“With cartoons, it’s the picture I would buy, rather than the joke. I liked ones with people, with characters, and the style was very important to me. I preferred rather bold colour styles, firm outlines like in John Hassall, for instance. I liked also the cartoonists who drew in wonderful detail, like Thelwell and Heath Robinson.”

One Hundred and One Cartoonists runs until January 29. For more details, visit the Cartoon Museum website.

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Obscene postcards? You be the judge

July 18, 2011 in Events

Saucy postcard by Bob Wilkin
An exhibition of seaside postcards that were banned by local councils in the 1950s opens in Margate this week.

I Wish I Could See My Little Willy named after a postcard by Bob Wilkin, above, enraged the authorities in the prudish post war years. The show is being held at the Pie Factory gallery, opposite Margate’s old magistrate’s court where the publishers of the day would have been prosecuted.

Across the country the authorities confiscated and destroyed thousands of ‘‘saucy’’ postcards as they feared that that the nation’s morals were in decline after the Second World War.

The free exhibition, which opens on July 23 and runs until August 2, is held in conjunction with the British Cartoon Archive, which has been digitising the postcards and putting them online, along with their associated obscene publications index cards, as seen above.

Nick Hiley of the British Cartoon Archive, which is based at the University of Kent in nearby Canterbury, told Bloghorn:

‘‘We are organising the exhibition with the Dreamland Trust in Margate. I will be giving a talk in the magistrates’ court where the cards were condemned — they have a wonderful witness box on casters that I hope to lecture from.’’

The old court is now the Margate Musuem. The talk is at 2pm on July 30. The organisers are hoping to follow it with an airing of the Radio 4 play Getting The Joke by Neil Brand (BBC permission pending). It tells the story of the trial of Donald McGill, acknowledged master of the saucy postcard, in 1953.

Round-up: What the Bloghorn saw

June 24, 2011 in Comment, News

Rob Murray writes:

Over at the New Yorker blogs, cartoon editor Bob Mankoff has been looking at what makes a good caption for a gag cartoon – and argues, contrary to popular opinion, that  novelty is overrated.

Following up, he considers whether it is possible to generate a universal caption that would work with all the cartoons featured in the magazine’s long-running caption contest, and asks readers to suggest their own. Mankoff  analysed some of these in a subsequent blog.

Five postcards by prolific cartoonist and master of the double entendre, Donald McGill, have gone on sale for the first time since being banned on obscenity grounds 56 years ago. The cards have been reprinted and sold by the  Donald McGill Postcard Museum on the Isle of Wight, and the Daily Mail has the full story  here.

Two months on from the royal wedding, Pippa Middleton is still making headlines – this time in cartoon form. The Duchess of Cambridge’s sister stars in a tongue-in-cheek comic strip, one of several released as part of the marketing campaign for video game Infamous 2.

A New York Times blog entry by historian Adam Goodheart deconstructs a cartoon that ran in Harper’s Weekly at the start of the American Civil War, and which later proved prophetic. It should make interesting reading for enthusiasts of both history and cartoons.

Meanwhile, in Russia, a new cartoon strip depicting prime minister Vladimir Putin and president Dmitry Medvedev as superheroes foiling a Speed-style bomb plot has become an internet hit. Creator Sergei Kalenik says he created the Superputin strip to change people’s depressing views of Russia’s political scene. You can read the strip in English translation here.

Bloghorn adds if you see something we should know, please tell us.

 

Saucy McGill continues to amuse

August 12, 2010 in News

Copyright Greaves & Thomas/McGill Archive

That saucy old salt Donald McGill continues to cause a stir, nearly 50 years after his death. For the first time, the full collection of 21 postcards which were banned after an Obscene Publications Act witch-hunt in 1953, have gone on display.

They can be seen in the perfectly appropriate seaside surroundings of the recently opened Donald McGill Museum and Archive in Ryde on the Isle of Wight.

There is little option for the modern mind but to see them as cliché-ridden, pre-feminist, pre-60s snapshots of the suppressed British libido. But the sexual innuendo still has resonance. Despite the 60s and beyond, many of us Brits still have a “policeman inside all our heads” and the simple rudeness is appealing. Why do we still laugh at them? Well, because they’re funny.

Even George Orwell was a fan. A short essay of his (“The Art of Donald McGill”) in 1941, written at the height of Britain’s isolation, flattered McGill’s egregious talent and his essential Britishness, but Orwell the Old Etonian couldn’t help but warn readers that the “first impression is of overpowering vulgarity”.

Orwell points out that the viewpoint in McGill’s postcards is essentially safe and conservative – that of the aspirational working class. “They express only one tendency in the human mind, but a tendency which is always there and will find its own outlet, like water. On the whole, human beings want to be good, but not too good, and not quite all the time.”

Where the cartoonist’s view might differ from Orwell’s is that they are not “ill-drawn” – they are rather well drawn cartoon art of a certain period. Certainly better than the dozens of imitators he spawned.