A Half-Hearted Attempt at a Political Cartoon

I may have taken a slight detour with the political aspect of this terrible, yet powerfully earnest, drawing. Any subtext here is purely coincidental and anything you might read into was probably a total accident on my part. Someone once told me that I should “try drawing political and op-ed cartoons” and this was the end result. However, after looking at the work of Donna Barstow, I am beginning to feel as if I may be on the right track. As a cartoonist, her illustrations have been posted in The New Yorker, Newsweek, Time, Daily News, Slate and a slew of other publications both on and offline. She is the author of the What Do Women REALLY Want? Chocolate! and an expert on Psychology Today. While there has been a bit of controversy surrounding her as an artist, I believe that her work speaks for itself as well as for her ability as an artist and social commentator.

Saying anything other than this is absolutely incredible would be an untruth. Often her pieces are so impressively complex that she is required to write a paragraph explaining the image and why it’s funny. As someone who enjoys writing as much as drawing, I can really identify here.

“Oops. Has Obama confused Libya for England, or is he more concerned with having been rejected by the future King of England as a guest at the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Katherine Middleton? In other words, just a little joke. We think Obama is concerned about the problems in Libya, but he’s really thinking about the Royal Wedding. For the men in my audience, good manners (and wedding protocol) dictate that one sends a wedding present to the couple, IF one has been invited to a wedding, even if you are unable to attend. But in this case, he wasn’t invited, so…”

Then again, it’s a lot of work to think up an idea for a comic, draw the comic and then do a write up about it explaining what it all meant. Most political cartoonists avoid those extra steps by just labeling every portion of the illustration so that you can immediately tell what each portion represents. I feel like I did alright when I did my satirical drawing of a muppet that had been shot in the face. But I still worry that it would be difficult for me to convert a complex and multifaceted issue into a single frame illustration that accurately represents the issue, while also ensuring that it remains as entertaining as it is informative. Perhaps it is better to leave the political cartoons to professionals, like Glenn McCoy, who can create social awareness with the measured hyperbole and a somewhat tempered political bias that readers deserve.


*For additional examples of the fine work by Donna Barstow and Glenn McCoy, please visit their websites.

About You Monsters Are People

Wisdom, wonderment and weird for everyone.
This entry was posted in comics, Dark Humor, humor, musings, society, style, Uncategorized, web comics and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to A Half-Hearted Attempt at a Political Cartoon

  1. prenin says:

    Cartoonists do very well when they highlight a political or social facet that needs attention.

    The last one with the abortion clinic was icky, but made its point VERY well!

    God Bless!


  2. When your cartoon came up on my Reader, I literally snorted with laughter. Pregsident Obama. LOL very clever

  3. Byron says:

    I feel kind of guilty that the image of a pregnant man makes me feel uncomfortable, and weird that it makes me laugh. There is a particular Arnold movie that I go out of my way to avoid watching.

    • Posky says:

      I don’t think I’ve ever watched Junior all the way through. As a child, I always thought it was the sequel to Twins though.

  4. I don’t understand point of abortion one. As an aside is there a prohibition from harvesting stem cells from aborted fetuses or just placenta ?

    • Posky says:

      I think it’s a state by state thing right now, I’m no expert though. Up until 2009, I thought most of this was happening to rats anyway. I know that there are stem cells within some organ tissue of fetuses, but that it was a big waste of time and way too controversial to mess with so embryonic was the way to go. So it basically has to be a zygote to obtain the needed cells. It has to be within the first few splits before it has developed into anything, so it is easier to just clone cells than hold out hope that someone happens to want an abortion the day after they got pregnant. There is some pretty mixed opinions on it and, despite new federal funding, some states flat out oppose it.

      However, you can also get stem cells from bone marrow, umbilical cord blood, amniotic fluid, and a few other places but they all have different cell types and potential- Totipotent is the only type that has the full potential to become anything and, I believe, it only comes from embryos.

  5. Pingback: Being funny isn’t enough « And then. . .

Comments are closed.