#350: Mum's Tablecloth Sketchbook & Cartooning's Night of Nights is This Week!
+ Nancy Beiman, A Visit from Julie Vick & Morris gets a new football!
The cartoonists are coming!
The Reuben Awards are this week!
What are the Reuben Awards? Well, the history of the who, what, and when of the biggest awards in cartooning are all on the National Cartoonists Society website, or watch me explain it, here:
In the meantime, you can check out our spectacular line-up of guests and honorees for this year at our shiny new Reubens website:
There’s a “Society” of Cartoonists?
What next, Drycleaners?
You bet your ink-stained fingernails there’s a “Society” of cartoonists! While we don’t have a secret handshake (that I know of), we do have the best cartoonists in the world all mushed together into one beautiful symphony of talent. It aaaaaaall started back in 1946. (Read more below)
I should tell you, I am a member. But, in the spirit of full transparency, I should also declare that…
If you’re a cartoonist and would like to join, click here.
Next week paid subscribers will be getting the illustrated story titled…
Playing Pickleball with an Olympian (Figure Skater)
You can read the previous post on my first Pickleball match here:
This week’s sketchbook is from the tablecloth of my Mum’s 70th Birthday Lunch
We went to the brilliant La Bastide in Shenton Park (Perth), where my sister works, with some close family for the best French meal I’ve ever had. My sister asked if I could draw our French waitress, Aurelie. I didn’t have any brushes for colour, so I used a ballpoint pen and stole my wife’s make-up applicator to give it some texture. (Sorry, Sophie.)
And of course, one of the famous Uncle Greg.
(…who has his own theme song. Which he sings. To himself.)
Thank you to fellow Substacker for kindly mentioning the book in her fantastic newsletter, “Humor Me” this past week.
And I got my hands on a copy of You’re Not a Real Parent Until... by New Yorker cartoonists Scott Dooley and Jason Chatfield. It would make a good funny gift book for the parent in your life who needs a short funny read (basically all the parents in your life).
I am currently engaged in a very sophisticated game of who can find the best hiding spot for candy with my kids, so this one particularly spoke to me:
I’m offering all subscribers a 15% discount if you use the special link below:
If you enjoy my work, there’s a hefty chance you might like the people I enjoy too. Each week I share a new person who tickles my fancy. This week’s person is…
Nancy Beiman —
When I was 21, I met Nancy at the Bunny bash in Long Island. Her book on storyboarding (Prepare to Board) was a helpful resource for someone starting out a career in cartooning. It isn’t just helpful for animators, but anyone who wants to be able to tell a story, visually. It really is still a very valuable resource.
Nancy recently pivoted from Animation to the field of Comic Strips: She now has a webcomic named FurBabies
In addition to posting her comic strip on GoComics, she also has a regular substack you can follow at:
She recently posted a collection of comic artists she enjoys, who she said I could also share here (A bit meta, recommending a recommendation!)
Here are a few unfamiliar and newer comics on the site that I find interesting, well drawn and funny. Some are, or were, published in regional papers. Some are only found online. One strip appeared in only one local paper. Sadly, some of these comics are no longer being updated. Tragically, one cartoonist has died. Regrettably, very few of the ones I like are drawn by women. This is not due to a lack of female cartoonists on the site. Some of them draw strips that are very popular. This list is my personal taste. Your mileage may differ.
I love the work of Cuban artist Gustavo Rodriguez. His UNDERSTANDING CHAOS appears on GoComics and Instagram, along with his political cartoons. Rodriguez has a great sense of color and design.
Richard Thompson’s CUL DE SAC about an eccentric family in a small eccentric Maine town, ran from 2004 until his untimely death in 2012. His RICHARD’S POOR ALMANAC originally appeared in the Washington POST, though I remember seeing it in NEW YORK magazine. Thompson is original, hilarious, a wonderful cartoonist, and sorely missed. Both strips are a delight.
Glenn McCoy’s THE DUPLEX is about a bachelor and his dog who lives next door to a woman whom he never seems to connect with. I like the design and layout and it’s very funny.
Liz Climo is a former SIMPSONS animator who has a line of charming greeting cards in addition to her comic about a gentle animal world. Her writing and draftsmanship are both delightful.
Rapper Keith Knight has three comics on the site. I particularly like THE KNIGHT LIFE, although it is in reruns (it is available elsewhere on the Web). He has a wonderful loose drawing style that I enjoy and his writing is great.
HARLEY by Dan Thompson is about a biker who rides around the country with his cat. It’s a joy to look at and has been around for a while…I’m surprised I hadn’t seen it earlier.
Allison Barrows’ PRETEENA is a funny and beautifully drawn strip about tween girls. Barrows has moved on (she has had an amazing career) and the comic is in reruns. At least we can see it here.
SPIRIT OF THE STAIRCASE by Matthew Foltz-Gray appeared only in one Knoxville, Tennessee paper and is now in reruns. Foltz-Gray has moved on to other things, and his style has changed. It was designed as a full page comic (like Little Nemo in Slumberland, which actually appears on the GoComics site!) and shares some artistic similarity with McCay’s strip. This makes it a bit hard to see on the digital page but it’s worth it. I did not know that l’esprit d’escalier was a French expression for not remembering a good comeback until after the occasion has passed.
Other interesting strips on the site are LUCKY COW, ON A CLAIRE DAY, OUT OF THE GENE POOL, and others as they say, too numerous to mention.
It’s an interesting new world and there is far more variety on the comics page than there is in feature animation. Comics are creator-driven. That should tell us something.
See you in the funny papers!
Until next time,
(Photo by Uncle Brent.)