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How I Drew Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen, Live!

yellin700

I’m getting a little bit better at live-streaming my cartoons each time. My latest attempt (below) is a drawing of Federal Reserve Chairwoman, Janet Yellen, who raised interest rates this week for the first time in many years. Interest rates had been cut back to zero.

The Fed has been cutting interest rates for a very long time. This cartoon of former Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan is from 2001 …

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Then seven years later I drew this one with Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, who cut rates to zero. I’ll probably draw another one of these seven years from now.

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Now Janet Yellen finally gets to raise rates, seven years after my Bernanke cartoon. This is only my second drawing of Yellen, the first one is below. I like how round she is – her face is round, her body is round, and she has big,round puppy-dog eyes. She’s great.

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Take a look at my live stream video! All of my mistakes are on view. I have no secrets and no shame.

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Remember CNN Spanking Me?

I ran across an old CNN video as I was futzing around YouTube figuring out how to do my new drawing videos. ElnortefrontpageforblogThis was a news segment, one of two or three they did about a cartoon of mine showing the eagle on the Mexican flag, dead from a hail of bullets. I drew the cartoon in response to a particularly bloody period in the battles with Mexico’s drug cartels.

I had a wild week as the media in Mexico went wild. The Mexican Embassy in Washington D.C. filed a protest with the top brass at msnbc.com, who I was working with at the time. Then in response to the uproar, a number of top Mexican cartoonists drew Mexican flag cartoons supporting me.

That was a fun week.

The video below, from CNN, is pretty crazy. Their anchor, Rick Sanchez, was later fired (not because of this story, of-course).

 

Strange, huh? Here’s another one from CNN International.

Here’s the cartoon. It was fun for a week and lovely to get all the support form the Mexican cartoonists.

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Trump, Polls and the GOP!

I drew today’s Trump cartoon live on YouTube. Here is the finished color version.

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That’s the GOP’s tarnished image at the right, as Trump rockets up in the polls. To really be going up in the polls, he should be facing to the right instead of the left – and I thought about that for a bit, as you can see in the video, but having Trump go the wrong way is better.

Today’s Trump news, about how he would ban Muslims from coming into the USA until we figure out “what the hell is going on” is great fun, because Trump’s supporters love what he has to say, while mainstream Republicans and the media are offended, demanding again and again that Trump leave the race. That tarnished GOP brand is starting to look pretty crusty.

Living here in red-state Tennessee I see angry Republicans are all around me; they live in their own news bubble, with their own history of the world, reinforced by their communities of like minded, angry, evangelical conservatives. The typical Republican voters are much father right than their knuckle-dragging candidates. Trump has plenty of room to his right to be even more outrageous.

Oh! Today I learned that the government of Pakistan is no longer blocking access to Cagle.com within Pakistan! Welcome to all of our new Pakistani readers!

COME WATCH ME DRAW THIS THING!

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The pundits on Fox News are holding their breath, turning blue, waiting for Obama to say the words, “Islamic Terrorists.” It may be a long wait.

I’ve gotten comments about how there appears to be nothing inside of Obama’s head. I wasn’t really thinking about making him be brainless, rather I was thinking of his skull as something of an echo chamber.

This cartoon was the product of my first try at live streaming the process of my drawing a cartoon. I had some tech difficulties, particularly with the sound. And I see that I will need to develop a new skill set for talking constantly while I draw. I should do a little better next time, solving these problems as I go along. Take a look at the YouTube video of my drawing session below. If the streaming is popular I’ll set up a regular time for it in the future. In the meantime, I’ll announce on Facebook and Twitter when I’ll be going live on YouTube.

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San Bernardino, Guns, Republicans and the NRA

My cartoon today about the terror attack in San Bernardino, inspired by the interesting front page on the New York Daily News.

Standing in a crowed of bloody, murder victims while saying something ironic or hypocritical is a cartoon cliche that every cartoonist has drawn many times. Here’s a similar cartoon that my buddy Pat Bagley drew recently in response to San Bernardino …

This Steve Sack cartoon is probably my favorite San Bernardino cartoon – it is a response to the New York Daily News  prayer front page and the rejection of another gun control vote in congress, with a wonderful rosary.

Here’s another one of my dead field of victims cartoons about Bashar Assar – as fresh today as it was when I drew it some time ago.

Here’s another one where I used the same victims. I traced the same dead crowd, and changed their clothes to Taliban duds.  There was a story at the time criticizing American servicemen for peeing on the corpses of Taliban fighters they had just killed in battle. I got a lot of angry reader response to this cartoon.

This also isn’t the first time I’ve drawn the NRA as a pig. Here is a Cagle classic NRA pig cartoon …

Pigs are a wonderful cartoon standard; they are a symbol of greed. Here’s a standard Cagle piggy oldie …

Pigs and standing among fields of the dead are two of my favorite things! (Maybe that’s another reason why those Islamic extremists don’t like cartoonists.)

 

 

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The GOP and the Refugee Doorway

The Republicans are trying hard to push back against the inflows of refugees and immigrants. Here’s my take. Often when I do cartoons that have muted colors, I get complaints from editors who want brighter colors. Refugees don’t lend themselves well to bright colors.

Often when I do cartoons have have muted colors, I get complaints from editors who want brighter colors. Refugees don’t lend themselves well to bright colors. I’m trying to do more texture in my cartoons now. Here’s a detail.

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Here’s my rough and dirty sketch. You can see that I fiddled around with the position of the elephant’s trunk before I was happy with it.

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I put a “Thanks to Michael Kounturis” in the lower left. Michael works out of Athens, Greece and he is one of my favorite cartoonists; he recently came back to our CagleCartoons.com newspaper syndicate package after a hiatus. My GOP Doorway cartoon was inspired by Michael’s cartoon below.

I stole a lot from Michael’s cartoon, including the position of the door and the guy pushing back on the door – and the general composition with the doorway poking up, off-center. It is all lovely – so thanks, Michael, and you have my apologies for ripping you off! See more of Michael’s great cartoons here.

 

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Republicans and Refugees

This week the House passed a bill that would stop the US from taking in 10,000 Syrian refugees; President Obama promised to veto the bill if it reached his desk. All of the Republican presidential candidates have been crowing about stopping refugee immigrants in the wake of the terror attacks in Paris, and the cartoonists have been doing some healthy Republican bashing in response, often including the Statue of Liberty with its obvious irony. Here’s mine …

I was impressed by this one, from my buddy Pat Bagley of the Salt Lake Tribune, featuring the dead Syrian toddler found on the beach in Greece, with Lady Liberty’s toes …

This Liberty in the position of the dead boy on the beach, by my cartoonist buddy Milt Priggee impressed me even more. (It would have been better without the sentence in the black rectangle.)

This Liberty is from my socialist cartoonist buddy, Rainer Hachfeld, from Germany.

There’s no Statue of Liberty, but this refugees cartoon by Hajo de Reijger of the Netherlands is so elegant in its form that I had to share it here …

 

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My Missing Donald Trump Cartoon

Breaking news can make a cartoon go missing. I was finishing up the color on this Donald Trump immigration cartoon last Friday afternoon when the news about the Paris Terror Attacks broke. Clearly, newspapers would not me interested in Donald Trump for at least a week. I notice that it is only today that the Donald is creeping back into the news with word that he is now leading all the polls again.

I thought this cartoon would be provocative, I didn’t guess that it would be ignored. I guessed wrong.

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How to Fight ISIS? With Cartoons

Pundits like to complain that there are few voices from the Islamic world that condemn terrorist attacks by Islamic extremists. I run a small business that distributes editorial cartoons from around the world. With every major attack, including the recent attacks in Paris, I see a chorus of cartoons from Arab countries condemning the terror. The pundits must not be looking at the cartoons.

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Cartoon by Steve Sack.

Editorial cartoonists are typically the most influential voices in newspapers throughout the Middle East, reflecting the views of their readers. Newspapers remain important in everyday life in the Middle East. Editorial cartoons grace the front pages throughout the Middle East. Arabic language cartoonists are typically anti-American and anti-Semitic, but on issues of terrorism they are largely voices of reason.

I often hear politicians complain about how the war with Islamic extremists is a battle for hearts and minds and we need to step up our role in an information war that we are losing. Editorial cartoons could be a weapon on the
front lines of that battle. By now Americans should see how powerful cartoons can be; clearly the terrorists see this, as cartoonists are among their primary targets. It is difficult for Americans to comprehend that editorial cartoons are important and effective in the Middle East because we view cartoons as trivial jokes, leading us to miss many opportunities.

Until recently, the US State Department had programs that brought American cartoonists on speaking tours to the Middle East to meet their colleagues, and had reciprocal programs to bring Arabic language editorial cartoonists to America. The programs sought to spread common values to countries where persecuted and influential cartoonists typically are barred from drawing their own presidents. These effective State Department speaking programs for editorial cartoonists were dropped at the time of the “sequester” budget cuts. USAID supported journalism education initiatives in the Middle East ignore and exclude cartoonists.

As international respect for America has plummeted, respect for many of our institutions still runs high. American cartoonists are respected around the world, like American jazz musicians and basketball players. Middle Eastern cartoonists are eager to have their work appreciated by American readers and by the star American cartoonists who they respect and emulate. The Arab cartoonists push back against the press restrictions imposed by their regimes and envy America’s press freedoms.

Every act of terror brings new recruits to the Islamic extremists in ISIS; they seek glory, selling an image of bravery, striking back against the arrogant infidels in the West. Brandishing a gun demands a kind of respect. Fighting for religious values, no matter how twisted, demands a kind of respect. ISIS craves respect; what they can’t bear is ridicule. Islamic extremists who are widely seen as the butts of jokes won’t find many eager converts.

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Cartoon by Milt Priggee.

Cartoonists are masters of disrespect and are a continuing threat to the Islamic extremists. It is no surprise that editorial cartoonists are prime targets for terror. Along with other web sites around the world, my own editorial cartoon Web site, Cagle.com, is suffering hacker attacks that appear to originate with terrorists and despotic regimes who fear cartoons. Terrorists and despots have a weakness in common; they can’t take a joke.

America needs to wake up, deploy and support the world’s best soldiers in the modern information war, American cartoonists.

This weekend President Obama claimed that he is already doing most of the things that his political opponents demand in the war with ISIS; he called on his critics to contribute new and constructive ideas on what should be done. My recommendation is inexpensive and powerful: bring back and greatly expand the State Department’s shuttered editorial cartoon programs around the world.

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France Weeps

We’ve been receiving a torrent of cartoons from around the world about last Friday’s terror attacks in Paris. I’ve been disappointed by most of the cartoons so far, many of which contain graphic pools of blood, depictions of monsters and broken Eiffel Towers. I think the first few days after an event like this are a time to express sympathy, so I went with a weeping Marianne, the French symbol from the Eugene Delacroix painting La Liberté Guidant le People (Liberty Leading the People). 

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Delacroix’s Marianne.

I struggled to think of what I wanted to draw, so I wouldn’t be drawing blood, candles, monsters or Eiffel Towers like the rest of the crowd. I like Marianne as a symbol for France and I like that the French embrace her as their own symbol. It was interesting to see so many of the cartoonists drawing the Statue of Liberty this weekend, the statue was a gift from France but she is a symbol of America.

Marianne has some problems: first, she may not be recognizable enough when she is seen out of the context of the Delacroix painting: second, her face exists only as a profile facing left, which can be a little limiting; third, she has one bare breast (or arguably, two bare breasts) and American editors are reluctant to print bare breasts – even though her bare breast is necessary to define who Marianne is in the cartoon. I suppose it is fitting that I had to struggle with this one.

Below is my rough sketch.

FranceLibertySketch700

I started out thinking of more cliches, like the candle and the flag at half staff – both bad ideas. I also ruminated about how to draw the drapery in her dress, which seems to be a heavy fabric rather than a normal fabric, along with her emerging toes. Here she is in black and white. (Yes, the flag pole covers up her nipple – I debated about that too.)

Then I colored her in – and I was disappointed with the result.

france-weeps-cagle-COLOR

Editors and readers always like cartoons better when they are in color, even in cases like this, where the color only cheapens the cartoon. One of my readers on Facebook, Rod Underhill, made the excellent suggestion that I limit the color to the flag; that was a great suggestion – and voila, a much better cartoon (shown at the top of the page)! I deleted the previous color version and sent a correction out to the newspaper clients.

Here’s another Marianne cartoon, a double breasted version. This one was popular in France where they find President Francois Hollande rather annoying.

This interesting Marianne comes from my French cartoonist buddy, Pierre Ballouhey, who includes characters surrounding the recent Paris attacks.

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Marianne is much easier to deal with in a goofy drawing. Here’s a nice Marianne by Angel Boligan, drawn after the Charlie Hebdo attacks.

This bloody Marianne is from my buddy, Martin “Shooty” Sutovec from Slovakia. With no side-boob, and no flowing ties on her sleeveless, fringeless dress, her new style beret and blonde hair in a different doo – I almost missed her, but Shooty got me to take another look.

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Jordanian cartoonist Osama Hajjaj drew a weeping Marianne with an Eiffel Tower in a pool of blood (perhaps he could have thrown in a couple of candles, terror monsters and the Statue of Liberty to make it complete). Osama obscured Marianne’s profile and bare breast issues, and he lost her beret. hmm. OK.

This Marianne is from Taylor Jones, after the Charlie Hebdo attacks.

Here’s a Charlie Hebdo aftermath Marianne from RJ Matson – looks like this one was a quicky to draw in Photoshop.

Visit our big collection of cartoons drawn in response to the Paris attacks.

 

 

 

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Andy Singer’s Panel Cartoons in the Editorial Cartoon Spot

Editorial page editors typically reject anything new and different from editorial cartoonists. Unusual styles and formats are just not what editors want to see. Editors like cartoons that look like what they think editorial cartoons should look like – which leads to lots of cartoons that look much the same.

I’ve been a big fan of Andy Singer’s self-syndicated, altie “No Exit” panel for years, and I’ve been encouraging Andy to try his hand at more traditional editorial cartooning. Andy’s panel has content that is socially conscious, like an editorial cartoon, but it is not the right shape, and it is wordy, and it doesn’t have caricatures of politicians and the panel format with a title is simply not something editorial page editors will consider putting in their daily editorial cartoon hole.

What to do? Andy wanted to be on the editorial pages but was committed to continuing the “No Exit” panel. Then he gave me a new pitch, saying, “Daryl, you know, when I put two of my panels next to each other it becomes the shape of an editorial cartoon, and if I do two panels that are on the same topic, and color them, it looks like one big editorial cartoon.” The idea looked interesting to me. The result is rather stylistically different than what editors are used to but Andy’s new editorial cartoon format looks like wordy, multi panel editorial cartoons, and editors seem to be accepting them. The connection between the two panels might be a stretch, but no one seems to notice. So far, so good.

A number of comic strip cartoonists, Like Dan Piraro and Wiley Miller, have been doing their cartoons in both strip and panel format for years. Andy’s work has some format advantages over most magazine gag cartoonists’ work; Andy’s panels are topically editorial cartoons to start with, and he doesn’t have a classic gag cartoon style with a caption at the bottom, which would be more difficult to reformat. Still, it may be that some other socially conscious panel or gag cartoonists could develop a new market by finding a procedure to reformat their ongoing work as editorial cartoons. Andy Singer is the trailblazer.

One of Andy’s new, combined format cartoons for the editorial pages. With the same characters and consistent color and format, it looks right as a single editorial cartoon and is proving popular so far.

Here are a couple more new editorial cartoons from Andy. Follow Andy’s work on Cagle.com here.

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Dr. Ben Carson is NOT a Liar!

I think Dr. Ben Carson is NOT a liar. Now, given that, I need to decide if that is a good thing.

carson-on-caglePeople always say, “Daryl, with this presidential election you must be having so much fun! And you must be soon busy!” Actually, newspapers don’t use any more editorial cartoon when times are fun, so it never gets busier. And having the campaign dominate the news for a year doesn’t make a cartoonist’s life more fun. A little variety adds spice.
But, Ben Carson is fun. We have a wonderful and growing collection of Ben Carson cartoons on Cagle.com Come take a look! My talented buddy Taylor Jones drew that Carson in our promo.

Here are a couple of my recent favorites, this first one is by my buddy, Jeff Koterba of the Omaha World-Herald:

This one is by the brilliant Kevin Siers of the Charlotte Observer:

This strange one from Randall Enos made me laugh out loud – it is a linoleum block print that Randy carves with a knife, inks and prints on paper, then scans, showing Jesus carrying a sleeping Carson at the head of the presidential race – I think that says it all.