News Ltd Article: "Australian comedians draw Donald Trump’s attention..."

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From Emma Reynolds at News Ltd:
 

Australian comedians draw Donald Trump’s attention with cheeky cartoon

TWO Australian comedians have drawn Donald Trump’s attention with a cheeky New Yorker cartoon.

A PAIR of Australian comedians have attracted Donald Trump’s attention with a cheeky political cartoon published in the New Yorker.

A pile of media clippings is delivered to Mr Trump every morning and afternoon, and on this occasion, their cartoon was near the top of the pile, the lobbyist told them after attending a White House meeting.

“He was like, ‘I really like this,’” Jason tells news.com.au. “I guess he just saw himself and he liked it.

“He’s got tiny little hands ... but he obviously just sort of went, ‘Yeah that’s me, I love it.’”

The cartoon is not particularly flattering, showing Mr Trump watching the gun march on television and blaming video games — a parody of Republican remarks on deaths by firearms.

“It sucks because that’s the biggest insult a cartoonist can get,” says Jason, who spent ten years drawing for local and national papers in Australia. “You ask any political cartoonist, if the person you’ve drawn likes it, you’ve failed, dismally.”

The 34-year-old says he was much happier when Mr Trump blocked him on Twitter earlier in the presidency, after Jason asked the former reality star if he was drunk.

Scott, on the other hand, says he was “rapt” that the President liked their cartoon and told his mum.

The stand-up comics have had great success with their satirical New Yorker drawings, and have now started recording a podcast based on the cartoons. Their images have covered almost every Trump scandal, from the Stormy Daniels saga to the Syria missile strike.

While Mr Trump’s presidency has provided a rich stream of material for humour, they have also delved into topics including Kanye West’s outburst, the Met Gala, Mark Zuckerberg and bitcoin.

When the pictures are too edgy for the popular American magazine — one was a cartoon of a death-row inmate taking an Instagram photo of his last meal — they sell them to Australian publications including MAD magazine.

“Every Friday, we hear back from the [New Yorker] editor whether we got in or not,” Jason says. “I go in on a Tuesday morning and sit with the editor and she gives her feedback. There would be roughly 25 people who slip in throughout the morning and it goes on into afternoon.

“It’s the last open-call cartoon meeting in the world.

“It’s so competitive. They get thousands of entries each week. They choose about 16.”

The pair sold their first cartoon to the magazine around the year ago — a surreal joke about “Vlad the Employer”.

They also write and appear on stage and television — although Scott, 38, says one American told him “Aussies don’t talk like that” when he auditioned for an Australian character.

The twosome are now preparing to turn the podcast Is There Something In This? into a live show, sketching out audience suggestions in real time. “I’m just glad two white male comedians have finally made a podcast,” jokes Scott. “For so long it’s been crying out for that — it’s a hole in the market.”

He says he doesn’t have the answers to the political problems of our time. “If I did, I wouldn’t be here writing jokes.”

But he adds: “You don’t want to pick a side necessarily. I think finding the logic for it is more important than trying to have a really right-on moment.

“We’re in danger of just finding ourselves in heated agreement with people we like and then as a result, when you meet people you disagree with, it becomes a very combative exchange.

“I always feel like any political discussion, you’re only ever one move away from being called Hitler or a snowflake. I don’t think that’s a great way to end a conversation.

“It’s also interesting to see what people think is the big news story because on any given day now — I feel like I’m longing for a decade ago — but you’d go, that is today’s story. Whereas now at 9am, you’re going right, it’s one of the following three or four, and that’s if there’s not some terrible shooting.”

Jason begins his stand-up routine by telling the audience: “I’ve wanted to live in America my whole life. I feel like I’ve caught you at a weird time.”

He moved to New York several years ago when Barack Obama was President. “As soon as I started living here, it turned to this,” he says. “And so I’m very angry, I feel like I’ve been short-changed. I feel like finally I’m in this land of opportunity and it’s turned into Russia.

“Some of the crap he says is beyond parody, so it has become very difficult for us to find a gauge, to make something seem silly, because it already is silly.

“We’ll be like, what’s the Trump angle and how do we make this funny without just showing what happened? So what’s our take on it, so we’re trying to develop a unique voice in the process.

“I guess we’re outsiders looking in, in a way. We’re Aussies in America, so we do have a unique take on American politics.”

Talking Trump, Drawing Larry David and the new Podcast on Triple J

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Today I spoke to Gen and Lewis on Triple J about the new pod, drawing Larry David and being a cartoonist in the Trump era. Click image above to listen to the interview.
(Excerpted below)

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Aussie New Yorker cartoonist Jason Chatfield on caricaturing Trump

Gen and Lewis were joined down the line by ‘Australia’s most widely syndicated cartoonist’, Jason Chatfield, only to be lightly roasted by the magic of cartoons.

Jason’s work has been seen in over 120 newspapers in over 30 countries around the world and you might have seen his work on Ginger MeggsMAD Magazine and the New Yorker. He’s also recently started a podcast with triple j alum Scott Dooley where they workshop ideas for New Yorker. He joined us to talk through how he got here and one Trump doodle in particular.

One of Jason’s career highlights to date (/highlight of his life, in general) was when he was asked to draw Larry David for the wall of Sardi’s Restaurant (a New York institution). At the time he wrote: ‘I don’t know quite how to describe how much I revere Larry.’ It was a big moment. So, how did he get here? How did he go from Perth to caricaturing his “spirit animal” for the world’s most legendary wall of caricatures?

According to Jason, it was a relatively classic tale: he used to get in trouble doing it in school until someone paid him to draw a teacher and he was off. Also, says Jason, “It was really just the only employable skill I seemed to have — you know, makin’ jokes — so I pretty much just did it as a hobby until it became a job.”

He’d previously been working as a printer during the day and doing caricatures at night. “I was burning myself out, burning the candle at both ends, so I decided to ditch the full-time job when I was like 19 or 20.” So after transitioning into officially being a cartoonist, how did he start making money? “It isn’t easy, I’ll give it that,” says Jason. “You’ve kind of gotta be able to do everything. You’ve got to be able to do political cartoons, and comic strips, and caricatures, and illustrations, and animations, and everything so you become a bit of an all-rounder.”

But by working in America, Jason says, he’s been able to specialise “because there’s enough work to go around.” Having said that, Jason is currently writing for MAD, doing cartoons for the New Yorker, writing Ginger Meggs everyday, doing stand-up at night and podcasting with Dools, so his work is being spread far and wide.

Is There Something In This?’ began because they were already workshopping ideas for cartoons at the pub anyway. So at some point, Scott suggested it might make a good podcast. To which Jason replied: “Absolutely not. There’s no way that anyone wants to listen to us talk about a visual medium but we did it and I’m being proven an idiot every week because it’s become very popular over here.”

One of the cartoons they workshopped, which was eventually bought by the New Yorker, was of Trump around the time of the National School Walkout to protest gun violence. It got back to Jason, through a lobbyist friend who was in the White House on the day it came out, that Trump actually liked it. “It was the worst day of my life,” says Jason.

“The best thing for a cartoonist is if someone doesn’t like your cartoon if you drew them. If you do a political cartoon and the politician hates it, then you’ve really done your job.”

"Apparently he just didn't read the tag and he just saw his face and must have loved it. He blocked me on Twitter a while ago, though, so I haven't actually been able to read his tweets for a while. It's bliss."

Road Diary: The Jewish Community Centre in Sherman, Connecticut

Last weekend myself and 6 other comics were booked on a show up in the remote woods of Connecticut.The venue was a local Jewish Community Centre in a small, remote town called Sherman. 

The booker of the show, also a comic, was generous enough to let me hitch a ride with him up to the show. It was about a 2-hour drive, which of course included my obligatory stop for clam chowder and coffee.

We arrived at the venue for soundcheck to find a small hall with a raised stage with a baby grand piano and a Japanese divider screen, and one single old man sitting asleep in the front row. I guess he wanted a good seat.

The other 4 comics trickled in as the hall filled up with elderly patrons. We surveyed the sea of blue rinse and baldness with growing concern about what material we might use in the show that would go over with this octogenarian crowd. We were told to work 'clean'.

Once everyone was seated, a voice from behind us said "5 minutes to showtime!"
I slunk over to my friend and fellow comic, Neil Rubenstein to say hello and prepare for my inevitable spectacular bomb.

The lights were dimmed as a small, bespectacled lady in her 80s shuffled out in front of the crowd, now adjusting their hearing aids, and addressed them with a warm welcome.

 

But then...    she said,

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I froze. This could not be good.
She continued...
 


Dumbfounded, I turned to my left to see Neil's reaction...

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I turned back to the old lady as she continued with her welcoming address...

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A wave of audible gasps could be heard rolling around the now mortified audience. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. Was she being serious?
I turned and grabbed Neil's arm to find him stifling a laugh, convulsing in an effort to suppress a gig-ending guffaw.

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Neil and I briefly excused ourselves from the room as we breathed out and conferred with each other in the break room -- "Is this really happening? Is she honestly doing this right now?" He replied, "This is going to be a bloodbath."

We composed ourselves and snuck back through the doors to see that our hostess had now decided to bring out a brochure, showing a series of old violins from a museum in Connecticut.

We caught the end of her sentence...

 

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At this point, Neil was giggling uncontrollably and trying desperately not to make any noise, but it was too late. The only two young audience members (in their 40's) in the audience had spotted Neil laughing and it had become contagious. They began stifling their own uncontrollable chortles.

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The hostess added, "And you would be able to see those at the Museum of Recovered Art..." whereupon Neil leaned over, and after three attempts finally got the words out,

 

"... but, sadly, the museum burned down."

 

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at which point I burst out laughing, along with the rest of the back row of comics, sick of mind and bereft of soul.

Then, just as we thought it was all over, there was one last addition to her devastating spiel...

 

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Because of course it was.


She then straightened up, looked to her left and said...

 

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I did not do well.

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Today's New Yorker Daily Cartoon: See what he's said now...

© Copyright Jason Chatfield

Last October I landed in Manchester after a 9-hour flight that took what felt like a week. When we boarded, the President had levelled a characteristically pompous threat across the Pacific, telling the so-called "Rocket Man" he had better watch himself. Rocket Man was not happy.

As the passengers all woke from our nervous slumber, the flight attendant's Northern accent honked over the speaker, "For your safety and comfort, please remain seated with your seatbelt fastened until the Captain turns off the Fasten Seat Belt sign. This will indicate that we have parked at the gate and that it is safe for you to move about."

She then continued, "Cellular phones may only be used once the Fasten Seat Belt sign has been turned off."

The seatbelt light extinguished with a polite Bong!

Like ravenous greyhounds launching after a hare, everyone swung out their smartphones and desperately took them out of Airplane Mode, opening Twitter en masse to see if the stable genius in chief had doomed us all...

I don't remember a flight I've been on in the last 10 years where the symphony of notification sounds didn't immediately penetrate the whirring of the winding down engines.

And don't get me started on clapping when the plane lands...

 

See more of my New Yorker Cartoons on their website at: 
https://www.newyorker.com/contributors/jason-chatfield

Terrible News: I'm now part of the Usual Gang of Idiots at MAD!

  © Copyright 2018 Jason Chatfield

© Copyright 2018 Jason Chatfield

I'm deeply ashamed to announce I'm now officially one of the Usual Gang of Idiots at MAD Magazine.

I don't know what I did to deserve this, but my name will now be tarred with the same brush as Al Jaffee, Sergio Aragones and Mort Drucker. Yecch!!

When I was just a little kid, I picked up my first copy of MAD from the floor of a recently extinguished house fire and distinctly remember thinking, "Wow! What a steaming pile of crap!" before tossing it back into the smouldering ruins.

Furthermore, I'm mortified to have to drag the reputation of my dear friend and writing partner, Scott Dooley through the mud in having his name tarnished alongside mine in our first (and hopefully last) piece in this (cheap!) rag.

I can only hope nobody buys a single copy of the brand new issue #1, available at all failing newsagents and bookstores from April 18th.

 

PS. Don't worry, Ginger Meggs won't be appearing in the magazine. I wouldn’t drag his image into such disrepute. This is just a scribble I did to give myself nightmares. I'll post the actual cartoon when the magazine is on sale.

Picture This! @ New York Comedy Festival

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Picture This! is honoured to be back for another year at the New York Comedy Festival!

COMEDY BY: Adam Conover, Jo Ann Firestone, Aparna Nancherla, Sam Jay, Marcella Arguello, Rae Sanni & Music by Free The Mind!
ANIMATION BY: Bryan Brinkman, Dan Pinto, Jason Chatfield, Victoria Elena Montes, Ray Alma & Irene Morales!

HOSTED BY: Ian Fidance!

This year I'll be drawing for Adam Conover from TBS's Adam Ruins Everything.

 

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SUNDAY 11/12 9:45p Doors, 10p Show $8 online, $10 at the door
https://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1563001

at Union Hall, 702 Union St, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Event Detail http://www.unionhallny.com/event/1563001

______________________________________________

"What is Picture This!?"

PICTURE THIS! is a new show from Brandie Posey & Sam Varela: two girls who want to push the boundaries of what a comedy show can be. Picture This! is a live comedy show with stand-ups performing while they are drawn live by some of the best animators, cartoonists, and other artists in Hollywood, CA, SF, NYC and Portland. Picture This! has also debuted in Toronto, New Zealand and Australia! The comedians don’t know what the animators are drawing and the animators don’t know how the comedians will react.

It may be weird

It may different.

But it will be FUNNY!

 

  Footnote: It was such an epic show! Thanks so much to everyone for coming out.

Footnote: It was such an epic show! Thanks so much to everyone for coming out.

On The Road Again

I got an email from my Agent telling me this last weekend I was to be heading back to Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey to host 4 shows at Bananas Comedy Club.  It's a well-run club but it's a little out of the way. Not to worry. It's a good thing I like buses. and people from New Jersey...


That Friday, I had lunch with my friend Tom Gammill before we went into Esquire Magazine to pitch to the new Cartoon & Humour Editor, Bob Mankoff. It was an odd meeting, but then nothing Tom and I end up doing together isn't odd. We had one last wine at Columbus Circle to plan our pitching strategy going forward before we both lurched forth into the cool breeze and parted ways.

I was headed to the home of infinite joy and wondrous smells (The Port Authority Bus Terminal) when fellow comic, Anthony LeDonne texted to say he was within beer distance so I stopped in at the Smith on the Upper West Side to brace myself for the onslaught, before jogging downtown through peak hour sidewalk-dawdlers to board the happiest vessel on Earth: The #163 to Hasbrouck Heights.

I was the last to board, so I was squeezed snuggly between a tattooed gentleman in a tank top and a septuagenarian with a scorching case of halitosis. 

 


The trip lasted about an hour longer than anticipated on account of a car accident on the highway. Everyone seemed to have a cold of some kind, so it was like a symphony of sneezes and snorts the whole way there. Bless.

Upon arrival, I checked in with the booker and got my meal voucher before trying out the new seasonal "Pumpkin Martini". A warning: Never ever do that. Ever. It was repulsive. I would have rather eaten a soggy clump of Autumn leaves.

 


I met the feature, Sean Morton, at the bar. A hilarious comic who will be headlining the Borgata for all of Thanksgiving week. He had to change his shirt after each of the 4 shows as the lights on the stage were so blisteringly hot he sweated out my entire body weight in water.

 



The headliner, SNL's newest cast member, Chris Redd was insanely funny. Out of Chicago, he had a Second City improv background, which really showed when he went to crowd work. Masterful stuff. He even managed to dig himself out of an anti-Trump chunk in a crowd of vocal Donald Devotées. Quite the sight to behold.

I snuck back into New York on Saturday for a cheeky lunch with le wife before galloping back to the Heights for the final 2 shows on Saturday night. It was great fun hosting -this time I was way more successful than last time, so I came away with my head held high, instead of slumped like a schlub with a herniated disk.

Before jumping on the bus Sunday morning I stopped in at my least favourite diner in America -Fisher's Restaurant for a dose of good old American cholesterol. i got the American Flag pancakes, which were topped with Strawberries (Red), Cream (white) and Blueberries (Blue.) Doesn't get more patriotic than that...



On the F-train home, I looked up and saw a guy who was on my train on Friday. he reminded me of the guy in Half-life who walks around mysteriouslyfor the whole game. He creeped me out.


 

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UK Sketchbook: Lakes International Comic Art Festival

That's right, this week I decided that instead of recuperating from the severe sleep-deprivation incurred by the most intense 4 days of non-stop insanity at New York Comic Con, I’d immediately fly to the UK for an even more intense 4-days at an international comic art festival.
 

Because of course I did.
 

 

Long-time subscribers will remember earlier in the year when I popped across the pond to Manchester to lend a hand planning parts of this festival. It was a long 48-hours, during which time I slept a total of 4 hours. 
 

 


You’ll remember my flight over on that occasion was with the infamous Thomas Cook airlines; a company that provide little more than a seat and a fart-filled fuselage. I sat next to a screaming baby that entire trip.

This time was no different.

 

On Wednesday afternoon, I got a haircut, pulled on my crappy suit jacket and (over)-packed my bags for another Thomas Cook flight to the motherland, and sat right in front of — you guessed it — another fucking inconsolable baby.  

I swear it was the same one. This baby has been following me around the world. It screamed the entire flight. Don’t believe me? Click here.
 

 

Already sleep-deprived, I desperately tried to get a wink of rest on the 5-hour flight… to no avail. Screaming baby was having none of it. By the time I landed in Manchester, I was greeted by the lovely Karen, a gardener from Kendal, who waited patiently while I ingested a year’s worth of caffeine to reanimate my lifeless, zombified body. It was 9:55am.

You see, I was to go straight from the plane and be driven 2 hours directly to Kendall College to teach a full theatre of engrossed students a slew of invaluable tips on using a Wacom tablet to create your art. I struggled to put two sentences together, but managed to cover the most important advice.

 

The lovely Karen patiently drove me through the centuries-old town of Kendal, educating me on the local wool industry and many lakes* of the Lakes District. *There’s one lake. I was so tired I barely retained any information but enjoyed hearing all about the history of Cumbria.
 

 

I had now been awake for 24 hours and desperately needed sleep, so she dropped me to my lodgings for the duration… Stonecross Manor Inn. Or as the locals call it “Fawlty Towers”, or "Flowery Twats"... or something.

This place was built in the Cretaceous period. The creaky walls burbled with sounds of boilers and snoring septuagenarians. The power sockets buzzed and cracked whenever anything was plugged in, and the Wifi was only available if you sat on the bottom of the staircase and held your laptop up at waist-height— Oh, and did I mention it was haunted?

Yeah. It was once an infamous girls orphanage.
Because of course it was.

This hotel was not the festival’s first choice for guests. The main hotel in town usually housing the VIPs was being used for a wedding this weekend, so we were relegated to the edge of town in this haunted old boiler-factory. I checked the guestbook to see who had previously stayed here.
 

 


After a brief nap, which was interrupted by a screaming baby in the next room (yes, actually) I spent a good hour trying to figure out how to use the shower. Like most hotels, they appear to have come up with their own wacky twist on ‘tap that turns on and water comes out.’  I had to solve a riddle and answer three questions to a troll before I could get a slow stream of warm, off-brown water to bathe in.

I ambled downstairs to be welcomed by my fellow National Cartoonists Society compatriots; Steve, Luke, Joe and Deb McGarry, Tom and Anna Richmond, and the inimitable, legendary Sergio Aragones. We stood around waiting for the shuttle bus to the Mayor’s welcome party, sharing horror stories of our first encounters with Fawlty Towers. We’d all been invited to the VIP opening night dinner and were to be received by the Mayor — a man of few words.
 

 



After a couple of complimentary sparking rosés, we were ready to mingle with the rest of the Festival guests and sit down to a welcome dinner in the aforementioned theatre.

 

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I did fanboy out when I met Manchester-based New Yorker illustrator Stanley Chow. If you’ve ever seen my social media avatar (above), you’ll know what a huge fan I am of his style.

You’d have seen it at the top of every single online New Yorker article next to the writer’s name. he somehow manages to defy the conventions of asymmetry in caricature and create these perfectly symbolic illustrations, perfectly encapsulating the person and their entire aura in the process. He’s a wizard. With a Manc accent.
 

 

I found my place at a table with Graham Dury from VIZ (UK’s equivalent of MAD), along with Stan Sakai (Ninja Turtles / Usagi Yojimbo) and Sergio Aragones (Living God.)

After mains, there was a 26-question quiz for each table to compete in. The questions were projected up on to the giant screen right behind my head. At one point there was a question about me. Every other table got it wrong.

Because of course they did.

 

 

At the conclusion of the quiz, we filtered out into the night and down the streets of Kendal, to a local pub at which we’d be spending a lot of time this weekend by the name of Ruskins Bar. There, we sang karaoke and drank locally brewed ales until the wee hours, because body clocks be damned. I sang Drops of Jupiter by Train. I reckon they liked it.
 

 



After a lengthy wait in the rain, we were shuttled back to our haunted lodgings in seemingly the only cab in town for a nightcap and a spooky few hours of sporadic shut-eye.
 

 

The next morning after a quick English breakfast of baked beans on toast with sausages, we were whisked away to the Mayor’s Parlour at the Town Hall, to be taught all about Kendall’s history and its rare, priceless artifacts. 
 

 

We sipped our cups of tea in fine china while a tall gentleman by the name of Simon hovered about the parlor, nervously holding centuries-old relics with his white cotton gloves. At the conclusion of his session, he offered for us to don our own pair of gloves and hold the various shiny things as Simon told us fun facts about them.
 

 

From there, we walked through the rain, across the bridge to the local tap house for some local ales and ham sandwiches. They loved their beer very much in this town and had even specifically brewed a number of beers for the festival itself. For dessert, we had chocolate cake. Made from beer.

 

Another nap was in order before the big live drawing event in the Festival Hub: The Brewery Arts Centre (I told you they liked their beer.)

Steve McGarry and I co-hosted a night of live-drawing with two artists hooked-up to giant screens, working on Wacom Cintiqs, while Sergio Aragones drew by hand, with a live camera feed from overhead lit up the stage with his drawings. 

The theatre was completely full, and the demand so high for viewing that they ended up simulcasting the event to an adjoining venue for more people to pile in and watch.
 

 

Seeing Sergio draw live is like seeing all seven wonders of the world at once. I would implore you to look it up on YouTube. The man is as prolific as he is hilarious — and the most generous, charming person you’ll ever meet. That night we awarded the inaugural Sergio Aragones Award for Excellence in Comic Art to Dave McKean. You can see his work here.

We also officially announced the UK chapter of the NCS and inducted our first batch of new, British members. This has been in the works for years, so it was nice to be there when it finally came to fruition.


The rest of the weekend was a blur. I attended events, moderated a talk with Canadian cartoonist, ex-NCS President, and Pulitzer prize nominee Lynn Johnston on her comic strip For Better or For Worse. I demonstrated on the Wacom tablets at the ‘Wacom café’ and met a tonne of insanely talented comic artists that all made me feel welcome, and at the same time like a hobbyist, dabbling in the scribbling arts.
 

 


I was booked to do a ‘cartoon-a-room’ event to teach kids how to draw, not realising of course that I was following the famed comic artist for The Walking Dead, Charlie Adlard. Lovely guy. Tough act to follow!
 

 


The biggest highlight of the weekend for me was getting to sit and do signings next to Sergio. I only sold about 5 cartoons, but I was spending most of my time leaning over watching him draw and sign all his collections of books and prints. We chatted about cartoons — and about the fact that in spite of his appearances, he is 80 this year.

He said he liked my Wacom video which made me smily like a goofball for the rest of the day. I didn’t get to see him for the rest of the weekend. I’m glad I got to spend that time with him.

 

 

One big event that I’d been looking forward to was the so-called “Knockabout Cabaret” event on Saturday night — a variety show of music, comedy and humorous slides from all corners of the globe. I was asked to do a 15-minute comedy set, about which I’d been quietly nervous all day.

I re-jigged my set to tailor the jokes to a UK audience but got the sense as I saw the MC “warm-up the crowd” that no amount of re-jigging would help. It was futile. I was walking onto a beach of gattling gunfire with no weapon.

I did my 15 minutes to varied response… they liked the Smiley bit, but I lost them when I started ragging on the queen. (Bad move). I think by the end of the set they couldn’t have been more nonplussed by my lack of local references and verbose stories in jaunty dialects.

I left the stage dejected and sunk my sorrows into a couple of local brews, sinking into the shadows to avoid the glares of Her Majesty’s subjects, as the following, baffling act took the stage.

 

 


The MC called him onto the stage but alas, the act was nowhere to be seen… he was out the back of the room somewhere. As the MC figured out where he was, the enormous gentleman ascended from the shadows to reveal he was wearing a skin-tight unitard, a mask, goggles and was holding an electric guitar.

The audience clapped once again as he slowly took the stage, plugged in his guitar and leaned into the mic. What happened next was 30 minutes of jaw-dropping bewilderment and a stony silence from the audience that rivaled even my performance.

 


The performer screamed mercilessly into the mic while violently strumming his Fender until the strings broke, and he had to stand on stage to re-tune it. He asked the audience to take a beer break while he tuned his fractured axe. It didn’t end well for him.

The final night’s farewell party at old Ruskin's Bar consisted of a comedian by the name of Gavin, who unfortunately shared my comedic fate from the night before. After the Bohemian Rhapsodies and the Britney Spears medleys of the karaoke encore, the show came to a close as we cabbed it back one more time to trusty old Stonecross Manor Towers Gaol Institute for the Daft for one last nightcap.

We were treated to some old English folk songs from old English folks until eventually, we turned in around 3:30 in the morning.

I got 3 hours sleep before stumbling down the stairs with my suitcase only to find my ride to the airport had gone to the wrong hotel. Not to worry… it was only a swift 2.5 hours to Manchester at 6:30am in peak-hour traffic. At this point, my brain had gone into suicide mode and was thinking of quick and convenient methods of ending it all. After arriving at the airport and taking 1 solid hour to get through security, it made me wish gone through with it.

 

 

By the time I got to the plane I was an exhausted husk of a human, collapsing into my chair and passing out before we left the tarmac. Not even the screams of the baby in the next row could keep me from my coma. 

And yes, I’m pretty sure it was the same baby.

 

 

Bar Sketches

The better half has a new gig playing piano and singing at a sterling New York establishment called Lexington Bar & Books, starting this Friday night. (She has a spiffy mailing list of her own, by the way.)

I sometimes go and listen to her play while sitting at the bar, watching the local characters and swilling gin martinis and drawing their exploits. I've posted a small gallery of them below, for your merriment and mirth. I'll keep adding to it here as I go.

The drawings on this occasion were from one particular Friday night at The now-closed Royal Munkey- an establishment also owned by the owner of Lexington Bar & Books.

 

(Click images to enlarge)

Picture This!

I couldn't think of a better pairing than yours truly and the incredible Matteo Lane and Sean Patton for this Saturday night's Picture This! at the FINAL Eugene Mirman Comedy Fest!

Also featuring: Reggie Watts, Sean Patton, Clare O'Kane, Mehran Khaghani & Dulcé Sloan with animation by Bryan Brinkman, Dan Pinto & Rachel Gitlevich!

Matteo is one of my favourite New York comedians.
Check him out on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2S-DqC0HtY

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SATURDAY 9/16 4:30pm Doors, 5pm Show
$15 online at https://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/1531141
at Union Hall, 702 Union St, Brooklyn, NY 11215
Event Detail http://www.unionhallny.com/event/1531141

Tub Trouble

 

I awake daily with excruciating plantar fasciitis because I was born an old man and my body hates me.

So I went to my unusually funny podiatrist who took one look at my foot, said "Oof." then wrapped my entire right foot in gauze and athletic tape. She said "Keep that on for four days," then she narrowed her eyes and growled, "and whatever you do... do not get it wet."

That night I attempted to shower.

It was a nightmare.

I don't have the core strength, nor the flexibility to hang my foot out of the shower and balance on my other foot while trying to bathe. I danced around on my soapy toes like a drunken chimp until I slipped over and bruised my arm. Water dripped down my leg and onto the floor, flooding the bathroom and saturating my bandages.

Shakespeare wrote, in King Henry IV, Part 1: "Before the game is afoot, thou still let'st slip"
I don't know what it means, but I'm pretty sure he's making fun o' me.

Bruised and battered, but not defeated, I gave up on showering. For the rest of the week, every day was...


 

 

 

I'm making it a thing. Get on board.
#ScotchBathSaturdays

2017 San Diego Comic Con Sketchbook

 

San Diego Comic Con International is a relentless 4-day cavalcade of Cosplay, comic fans and crazy critters. I always take as many photos as I can and sketch from them after the fact. I was drawing people all 4 days at the NCS booth, caricaturing people as their favourite comic characters and superheroes.

Here are a few snippets at the insanity...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This guy was waiting in line behind me.
He didn't blink one time. Not one.