Here’s the next in the fun series of animations I created for The Economist to compliment their specialised dictionary ” Economics A-Z”. This one is about hyperinflation. Please share!
I created these with the help of the great local Baltimore animation studio Bully Entertainment. It is our hope these will be the first of other short films tackling complex issues with humor.You can see them here.
This week marked my return to The Baltimore Sun after a 6 year hiatus. I am delighted to be back. (see this week’s cartoon below)
This new chapter in my career started in early December when I received a surprising email from Andy Green, Editorial page editor of The Sun. He had been asked by the publisher of the paper to see if there was any way they could lure me back. This was an intriguing thought.
I have been very lucky during the intervening six years since my departure from The Sun. I had a close and long term (30+ year) affiliation with The Economist which continued to blossom. I joined UMBC as an Artist-in-Residence where I have engaged in a series of great projects involving students and faculty. I have also been exploring animation in a big way, working with local animation houses DigitalSteamworks and Bully Entertainment on some great and exciting films. Check out the video below created by The Sun that talks about my recent work.
So, when The Sun first contacted me, I thought that I might be too busy to accept their offer. But then, I reconsidered. I thought I could manage one cartoon a week as long as certain conditions were met.
First, I wanted assurances of editorial freedom in my work. Next, I wanted the cartoon to be displayed at a large enough size to adequately showcase the artwork. Third, and most importantly, I wanted to maintain the same rights that I have enjoyed with The Economist over the past 3 decades: I would own the physical artwork of the cartoons and own all rights to the use and reproduction of these cartoons.
I submitted these requests along with a daily rate for producing a black and white cartoon. The Sun agreed to my proposal.
We determined the starting date to be the 19th of February because I would be settled back in Baltimore after some international travel.
During my return flight from the UK on Thursday, I scanned through the in-flight movie listings and made the mistake of choosing to watch “Immortals”, the over-the-top B-level sequel to “Clash of The Titans”. All was not lost, however. The farce of a movie acted as a perfect inspiration for my first cartoon for The Baltimore Sun. (see below).
Back in January 2006, I was one of the many victims of the mad and desperate cost cutting that was crippling US newspapers. It is my hope the return of a cartoonist to The Baltimore Sun is a modest beginning to the reversal of that trend.
I just came across on the web this delightful blast from the past.
This was a televison commercial I worked on in 1987 with Richard Williams, one of the all time great legends of animation.
It was great experience. I had been hired to be the cartoonist at a brand new UK newspaper called TODAY.The goal of the commercial was to use my cartoons to promote the newspaper.
I worked closely with Richard on the early part of the project. I created character drawings of the major players along with the opening sequence plus a few key drawings. Richard and his animators then took the project and ran with it.
There are some funny little tidbits in the film. In the opening art (it is very difficult to see in this low quality video)… in the audience at Parliament, there are sheep and Mickey mouse sitting in the balcony. Also, among the backbenchers are caricatures of me and a couple of the creatives from the Ad agency that managed the project.
A part that Richard particularly enjoyed was the transition of Neil Kinnock (the then leader of the Labour Party on the right) from a devil to an angel. Look carefully, you will notice he disappears up his own rear end.
As I recall, It took us three months to complete the project with hundreds of drawings used to create the animation. By the time the commercial was ready, the Today newspaper was low on cash and could not afford to give it a nationwide release in the UK. Instead it was aired on local stations (not in London). Still when I visited Richard on a later occasion, he told me it had won two animation awards ( I don’t know which… any info here would be welcome)….2 comments
Since 2006 I have had the good fortune to work with the Maryland based digital imaging company Direct Dimensions. This company is both conveniently located near my home and one of the premier companies of its type in the country. ¬†They are involved in numerous interesting projects¬†from scanning the Lincoln Memorial to football star Ray Lewis.
Direct Dimensions’ newsletter is always full of cool stuff that the company is currently engaged in. ¬†The current newsletter features KAL animation projects. ¬†There are some good explanations of the technology involved and interesting graphics.
You read all about it HERE.No comments