Monday, March 02, 2015

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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

CAB 2014 Report

CAB 2014 Report

Comic Arts Brooklyn was held last October, 2014 in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (of all places!) where up until about ten years ago, Williamsburg was named after Colonel John Williams, a land surveyor from 1800. Present-day Williamsburg is named after Williams-Sanoma.

The affair was split into two days this year with the half devoted to commerce taking place on Saturday at the Mt. Carmel Church gymnasium and the half devoted to programming on Sunday at the Hotel. We call it “programming” in the hopes that the talks succeed in programming the audience to go out and buy comic books, and also because it sounds classier than “cartoonists gassing-off”.

Olivier Schrauwen’s new book, “Arsène Schrauwen”, is so good that I wanted to punch him, but he has the lightning-fast reactions of a cartoonist and deftly deflected the blow.

The most successful of my former students do not get jobs at DC, Marvel, or the gaming industry, but make nice and nasty, somewhat obscene, ratty-line self-published stuff. I am so proud of them!
With Andy Pratt and K.J. Martinet.
...and with Tom Toye and Heather Benjamin.
I owe these fellow teachers, cartoonists, and dapper gents, R. Kikuo Johnson and R. Sikoryak my thanks for being the only guys nice enough to straighten my collar situation.


David Mazzucchelli went to CAB incognito. He dressed as his mom by wearing (I am not making this up) her old ski hat from the 60’s. Chip Kidd was jealous so I had to keep them apart....


The green room was brick red. I got to sit between Al Jaffee and Michael Kupperman for a few minutes prior to Michael’s remarkable comprehensive overview of Al Jaffee’s career. It was one of the best of this kind of presentation I have ever seen and I hope that if I get to be 93, like Al Jaffee, that Kupperman will make a career retrospective of my work. If you like comics that are actually comic, do yourself a favor and get a copy of Kupperman’s books, "Tales Designed to Thrizzle". And Al Jaffee? I thought that if you are an icon it automatically disqualifies you from being a mensch. That Al! Never plays by the rules!


Karen Green is a librarian at Columbia University where she holds down the Ancient, Medieval, and, naturally, the Comics collections. Here she holds down a discussion with Benjamin Marra, Jim Rugg, and Tim Lane about stuff they like: wise guys and tough-talkin’ broads.


Here Art Spiegelman and I are absorbing Roz Chast’s proclamation that humanity is “just a bucket of guts."

Roz Chast titled this photo: "Roz and Art worship at Paul's temple."
New York Times Op-Ed Art Director, Alexandra Zsigmond, moderated a panel with three cartoonists, Aisha Franz (Earthling), Lisa Hanawalt (My Dumb Dirty Eyes), and Jillian Tamaki (This One Summer). For pure visual fun, the slides these artists shared were probably the hit of the day. Boy, do these cartoonists work hard!

Lisa, Aisha, Jillian...and Shemp Howard.


Many “Best of the Year” lists were topped with Richard McGuire’s “Here”, a project begun waaay back as an assignment in a comics class that I co-taught with Mark Newgarden. The seminal black and white strip version appeared in RAW and now, years later, Richard has magnificently turned it into a book and soon an interactive digital experience thingy of some sort.


For the final presentation of the day, cartoonist Josh Bayer tried, without much success, to get a coherent train of thought out of the lips of Raymond Pettibon, who employs comics imagery in his profitable gallery work. Pettibon’s spontaneous ramblings enthralled fans and mystified non-fans.

Pettibon hit the ground dissing the many cartoonists and comics fans in the room by explaining that he could have been a cartoonist if he had wanted but, "I'm making more money than they are so they can suck on this."

Pettibon concluded with a demonstration of his ink technique by copying a Steve Ditko (I think?) drawing of Spiderman that morphed into a guy shooting up and sporting an enormous penis. Decidedly anti-censorship, he readily agreed on the spot to donate the profits from the sale of this original to the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund.

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Saturday, January 03, 2015

Gag Deconstrucation

A few months ago, New Yorker cartoon editor, Robert Mankoff, ran a piece of mine on his blog deconstructing a Peter Arno cartoon:

I have written a follow-up piece giving Charles Addams the same diagrammatic treatment appearing in The New Yorker "Cartoons of the Year".

...and no need to remind me that E.B. White once said: "Analyzing humor is like dissecting a frog. Few people are interested and the frog dies of it."

(click on image twice to first isolate it and then to enlarge it)

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Graphic interview with Jules Feiffer

From the Vineyard Gazette 29 August 2014

(click twice to enlarge to reading size)

Saturday, July 05, 2014

Outdoors with Nelson Bryant

A new Graphic Report published in the Vineyard Gazette, July 4, 2104.

Nelson and Jeffrey Bryant fishing at sunset:


Friday, June 06, 2014

Graphic Novel Workshop this August in Vermont

Know any aspiring cartoonists (young or old) looking for some time, space, and guidance to work on that graphic novel project they having be musing about? Here's their big chance!


Sunday, June 01, 2014

Tea Lane Farm: Graphic Report for the Vineyard Gazette