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Inkspot Summer Edition

Thumping the Tub From the President’s desk

Number 39, December 2003 Ctrl c, Ctrl v, Ctrl x David Pope Contributors Margaret Bridgman, Peter Broelman, Joanne Brooker, Gary Clark, Christophe Granet, Alex Hallett, Rolf Heimann, James Kemsley, Tony Lopes, Robert Mason, Neil Matterson, Steve McGarry, Steve Panozzo, David Rowe, Mark Selan, Lee Sheppard, Greg Smith, Ian C Thomas, Daniel Zachariou.

eason's greetings, whatever season you are celebrating! Another page off the pad and into the waste paper bin - well almost!

S

The feedback from everyone who attended Stanleys 2003 has been universally positive.

President James Kemsley president@abwac.org.au Secretary Steve Panozzo 02 8920 9996 secretary@abwac.org.au Treasurer Mick Horne 08 9527 3000 treasurer@abwac.org.au Vice Presidents Roger Fletcher (NSW) 02 9604 9216 nsw@abwac.org.au Vane Lindsay (Vic/Tas) 03 9532 4849 vic@abwac.org.au Gary Clark (Qld) 07 3353 0422 qld@abwac.org.au John Martin (SA/NT) 08 8297 8516 sa@abwac.org.au Greg Smith 08 9409 5026 wa@abwac.org.au ABN 19 140 290 841 Inkspot is produced fourish times a year by the Australian Cartoonists’ Association and is posted to all major regional and suburban newspapers and national magazines. PO Box 318 Strawberry Hills NSW 2012 Australia Post Registration PP 533798/0015

For such a solitary occupation, as cartooning tends to be, a once-a-year three day "stand-around-the-watercooler" type of occasion is a necessity to keep as all sane and in touch with reality. For myself and the Australian Cartoonists’ Association Board, "borrowing" from our overseas colleagues was worth a try. A Stanleys-by-the Sea-type weekend takes a lot more planning and a considerably greater workload is involved, however this year's attendance would suggest any extra effort is worthwhile and is appreciated by the membership.

Cover illustration: John Spooner

www.abwac.org.au 02 9601 7688

chance to mingle and mag, and share the goss on our industry.

We had 160+ at the awards, over 70 at the Conference, huge attendances on the cruise, the Mayor's welcome cocktails, the farewell spit-roast and Milligan's show, and those who were there know how full the Pizza place was on Friday night. The Prez thankyou party, which sort of ended at 3:30am, was almost as big as some of the previous Stanleys and this time the partying never stopped! It was obvious over the weekend that cartoonists thoroughly enjoy each other's company, and relish the opportunity to interact with one another. Historically the Stanleys have been a "7pm for 7.30pm affair" where trying to catch up with mates or colleagues was limited to a bumpy elbow-toelbow chat over canapés and a beer before the awards, maybe a quick table swap during the ceremony and in most cases a shouting session over the band at the end of the night. Both recent Stanleys in Canberra showed that more was needed to make the weekend worth turning up for. I've been lucky enough to attend the Reubens in the US and similar functions in the UK and Europe over the last few years where what we accidentally stumbled on in the ACT is the norm. That is, a few days built around the awards, which gives everyone a

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Personally I would like to see future Stanleys held about an hour to ninety minutes outside the major CBDs in centres which specially cater for visitors and conferences, such as ours. It gives everyone the chance to meet in the nearest city and then travel together to the designated weekend location by train or coach. As it did this year the "party" really gets underway on the Friday. It's also ideal for partners who think, and justifiably so, there should be more to do than sit in a crowded room of sweaty scribblers on a betterthings-to-do type of afternoon. Places such as the Barossa or Hunter Valley and their wineries, Ballarat or Southern Highlands and their history, Queensland's Sunshine Coast, the NSW South Coast and their beaches could all be considered. Although it's early days the ACA Board has already discussed Stanleys 2004 and various members are checking facilities with the aforementioned criteria. Please watch this space as we would like to be able to announce details early in the new year to give everyone the opportunity to plan well in advance. Anyone reading this with any ideas or suggestions please feel free to contact your closest Board member or me. While it's not for this Board to set in concrete how future executives should plan the Stanleys, I would hope they might give careful consideration to the three-day format. 2003 also saw the inaugural Stanleys' Cartoon Auction. Apart from being an opportunity for those at the dinner to purchase a piece of long lusted-after art, the auction added


the cast of "Size Seven Socks", for giving us a glimpse of not only Spike's genius but also of their own rich vein of comic talent.

another dimension to the evening. Not only was it good value in terms of entertainment it also made sure that Stanleys 2003 was a self-funded function and in no way had to be subsidised by our reserves or membership fees.

Thanks to my son Jed whose inherited computer talent made the night's presentation the best yet visually. (I have to find out who his dad is 'cause his mum is a technophobiac!) Thank you Tanya Creer for another excellent job on the graphics.

For the record, the auction grossed around $9,500, which, when added to the profit on the night, had the weekend bank balance in the black to the tune of nearly $13,000.

A par to himself! Those at the night will know why! A BIG THANK YOU to David Rowe, for the new Jim Russell Award statuette (see page 7). It's superb and as WEG commented "bloody heavy!" Jim would have been thrilled with David's efforts.

Thank you to all who kindly donated a piece of work and to the Estates who generously gave cartoons by Stan Cross, Jim Russell, George Sprod, Eric Jolliffe and Spike Milligan. The artist smock signed by all and sundry on three continents brought in $1,700!

MICK HORNE! I wish we gave out VCs! You're a legend!!!!! We love ya!

It is gratifying to be able Thanks to all the speakers to report a profit while at at the Conference, not a the same time keeping boring minute between the ticket price for the them. David "WAHcom" weekend to $145. Spencer and Richard Exceptionally value when "Painter" Dodd, who not you consider the money only sponsored the awards, bought a Brisbane Water spoke at the conference, did Cruise, coach transfers on demos ALL DAY and into Friday, the Mayor's the night and presented exhibition and cocktail awards but also mucked in party, the day-long and helped out with the conference & bulging workload packing goodies "goodies bag" (thanks to bags and solving AV Ukele-wielding auctioneer Warren Brown and MC Bill Leak those who donated problems. Good one, at Stanleys 2003. More pics from the Stanleys inside. content), pre-Stanleys blokes! canapÊs and drinks, the Thanks Tony Lopes for Awards dinner (with drinks included) and for many giving us a photographic history of Stanleys 2003! the President's thank-you party, Pat Milligan's live (Some of which can be seen in these pages). In years to show and the Mayor's farewell bbq. Phew! I cannot come researchers will scatter roses on your plot! promise that we will EVER come in at that cost for that Meanwhile I'll be doing likewise for John "Mo" Moses, much again. who was there whenever needed. By the way, this time round the Stanleys Year Book Many, many thanks to Tom Hamilton-Foster, for also covered all its costs, including postage to organizing and hanging the Spikefest Cartoon members, agents and syndicates - overseas & locally. In Exhibition and his on-going support of the ACA and total over 600 copies were distributed. Once again with cartooning, both personally and through the Bunker no dipping into ACA funds. Cartoon Gallery. Thank you to Rotary for their support It's not for me to present a treasurer's report here but I of Tom! will say that the ACA is currently as financially sound Thanks to the Board of the Australian Cartoonists' as at any time I can recall since my first days on the Association whose confidence in what the Stanley's committee in the early 80s. 2003 committee had planned went a long way to The healthy financial position is due in no small way to making it happen. Individually - Greg Smith (WA), the fact membership since May is up almost 60%. The Vane Lindesay and Rolf Heimann (Vic/Tas), Roger Board is well aware of its responsibility to respond to Fletcher (NSW), Gary Clark (Qld) and John Martin the show of confidence by cartoonists who have chosen (SA/NT). It would be slack of me not to mention my to continue to be part of the ACA and to those who good mate Peter "I never sleep" Broelman who also put have re-joined or joined the Association and will be in big-time leading up to and over the weekend! striving in 2004 to make the annual fees equally as Finally, yes finally! A non-Stanley's bouquet to David good value as the Stanleys were this year. Pope in the nation's capital, and all contributors, for I would like to put on record my thanks to a number of their efforts with Inkspot 39. people who made the weekend work! Jenny Hughes, Thank YOU for taking time to read the above! Lindsay Foyle, Mark Lynch, Steve Panozzo and Roger Fletcher, collectively the Stanleys 2003 committee. Bill "He'll always be God" Leak and Warren "Banjo" Brown. Those who missed the Awards you missed some absolute magic! Steady Eddie, whose 5 minute James Kemsley "hello" grew into 30 hilarious minutes and knocked the President, Australian Cartoonists’ Association socks off everyone in the room. Patrick Milligan and

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News

Age in Melbourne (“Mousetrap”) and Matt Golding, from the Melbourne Weekly Magazine (“The Fat Lady Coughs!”)

The 2003 Walkley Awards

Simon Pipe from News Limited received the Walkley for Editorial Graphics and Design.

The decision follows an earlier furore over a Michael Leunig cartoon on Palestine that was pulled by the editor of The Age, and accusations of editorial interference by sacked NZ cartoonist Malcolm Evans regarding his commentary on the Middle East. Moir has copped the decision on the chin.

Mark Knight, editorial cartoonist for The Herald Sun in Melbourne, has won a Walkley Award for Excellence in Journalism for his cartoon on the PM’s decision to carry on in the top job.

“I drew [a] comparison with Warsaw. This caused much reaction, not only from the Sharon & Likud supporters whom I expected to upset, but also from many I know to be moderates who read much more into the cartoon than intended. “ “Thus the cartoon backfired.” “I have since done more subtle & hence more effective cartoons on the same subject.”

The judges commented that Knight’s cartoon “Not Happy John!” was “deft, absolutely accurate on the day and a good adaptation of a popular gagline… It’s just a hoot.” The other finalists in the cartoon category were Dean Alston from the West Australian (“Compelling Evidence For War”) and Peter Nicholson from The Australian (“Twinkle”). Sturt Krygsman from The Australian received a Walkley in the artwork category for his editorial illustration “Uncle Sam Gets Mad”.

“9.11.01 – A Shock To History” focused on the “personal stories of those affected by the event and photographs taken by New Yorkers who witnessed the terrorist attack first-hand. It featured strong typography, multilayers and white space, and a tone that was aimed to be more reflective than sensationalist.” The judges lauded the “good picture choice and fantastic information graphics” that ensured the success of the design from the beginning to the end. Raymond Hirst from The Adelaide Advertiser was another finalist in this category (“Antarctica”), as was the team of Viki Sizgoric, Edi Sizgoric and Chris Topp, from The Australian (“A Graphic War”). Both winning images in the cartoon and artwork categories are superbly reproduced in this year’s ACA Yearbook, which can still be viewed online at www.abwac.com.au

Press Council upholds complaint against cartoon The Australian Press Council has upheld a complaint against The Sydney Morning Herald for a cartoon by Alan Moir that juxtaposed images of the wall being built by Israel on the West Bank, and the Warsaw Ghetto. Krygsman’s hulk-like superpower impressed the judges with it’s “excellent execution and a clever reference to popular culture.” “Krygsman showed an innovative adaptation of comic-book style and perspective that looked even more sensational on the page.” The other finalists in the artwork category were Andrew Dyson from The

The cartoon, published on August 12, was captioned “The road to peace” and comprised two separate images of roads blocked by walls – a wall labelled “Warsaw 1943” and a wall labelled “West Bank 2003”. While the historical irony of a Jewish state walling up another society would seem to place the cartoon within the bounds of “fair comment”, the council disagreed.

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According to a SMH report on November 17, the “council has consistently taken the view that cartoonists should have considerable freedom to comment on events, and that exaggeration and caricature are legitimate vehicles for conveying their message.” “This does not imply unfettered licence to be inaccurate or seriously offensive, and cartoonists, like writers, must be accountable for what they produce”. The council was satisfied, however, that the space given over to criticism of the cartoon within the paper, including a prominent apology from the editor and an article defending Israel’s controversial wall, was sufficient redress.

PANPA ACA Queensland Vice-President Gary Clark reports that the yearbook of the Pacific Area Newspaper Publishers' Association (PANPA) will this year have two new inclusions. The first is the addition of the Australian Cartoonists' Association among it's listings of member newspapers and associated organisations. The second is the inclusion of newspaper-related cartoons by ACA members, at the invitation of the PANPA yearbook editor Jennifer Veerhuis. The work of several ACA members has been submitted for consideration, with the final choice to be made by PANPA. Clark said that time did not allow for a broadcast request to all ACA members to submit works for possible inclusion. “But if this year’s entries successfully liven up the yearbook pages it will hopefully become an ongoing part of


the annual publication and in a small way reinforce the message to it's editor readers that cartoons are a necessary part of this industry.”

John artwork via the Kids Club web page on www.abwac.org.au.

Best from the West

ACA member Alex Hallett has completed the illustrations for Oddieworld.com, an interactive Flashdriven website that answers the question of where all the odd socks go.

Phil Faigen is preparing an exhibition of cartoonists who worked in Western Australia during the period 1940-1990. Phil hopes the exhibition will raise the profile of WA cartoonists and their art work (and not necessarily limited to their cartoons).

Oddieworld

Oddieworld.com is the creation of Grant Slatter, and was brought to life on the web by Designation.

He has already received permission from many of the "usual suspects" (Langoulant, Alston, Rigby, Leahy and others) but wants to make sure no one is missed.

Inkspot 40 The 2004 Autumn edition of Inkspot will be produced by Peter Broelman and team SA. The next edition will include the address by AAP Editor-in- Chief Tony Gillies to the ACA Stanley's conference on “What editors want”.

As Inkspot goes to press, members of the Australian Cartoonists’ Association in Western Australia are showcasing their work as part of the Fremantle Festival.

Expressions of interest in editing the Winter edition, Inkspot 41, are now being sought. Cartoon: Christophe Granet

FECO News The Federation of Cartoonists’ Organisations (FECO) is adding a second system of ratings for the international cartooning competition’s and exhibitions that it helps to promote. The”hearts” system will be introduced from the beginning of 2004 and will attempt to assess the quality of a competition’s organisation and it’s publications, and how it treats award winners and jury members. FECO is currently seeking reports from contest winners and jury members. Email FECO Secretary General Peter Nieuwendijk: The exhibition runs until Sunday 14 December, 10.00am – 5.00pm daily, at the Fremantle Arts Centre, 1 Finnerty Street, Fremantle.

endyk@pnieuwendijk.demon.nl

Cartoon: Rene Baur

http://www.abwac.org.au/downloads /feconews12.pdf

South Australian cartoonist John Martin has been working hard to produce the fourth Practical Joker installment for the ACA's Kids Club program: http://www.abwac.org.au/downloads /practicaljoker4.pdf A big thanks to all those who contributed. ACA members can send

ACA members can keep up-to-date with the latest competition and exhibition news by visiting the FECO website:

To access the members-only pages that list the competitions, you will need to enter the username fecocontests and the password andyslist

Café Last Laugh

ACA Kids Club

The 10th International Ankara Cartoon Festival Theme: "Cartoons and Humour". Deadline: 15 February 2004. www.nd-karikaturvakfi.org.tr

www.fecoweb.org

If you produced cartoons in the West during that period, or know of others who did, call Phil at work on 02 9316 3025, or send an e-mail to faigen@allpointsbuilding.com.au."

The exhibition features an extensive collection of cartoons from 13 ACA members.

Themes: a) “Humour and social satire”; b) “Intermedia” (internet, telephone, mobile phone) Deadline: 1 February 2004 www.satyrykon.com

You can download the latest FECO bulletin from the ACA website:

Future competitions include: The 43rd Knokke-Heist International Cartoon Festival Knokke-Heist, Belgium Theme: free Deadline: 12 January 2004 www.cartoonfestival.be International Satyrykon Cartoon Competition Legnica, Poland

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Editor of issue 39, David Pope, says the pay is lousy, but ACA members are pretty good at coughing up copy when the call goes out. The new free-form Inkspot has now been produced in Melbourne and Canberra this year as part of a new ACA plan to rotate editorial duties. Asked what he’ll do with his free-time now that issue 39 is over, Pope is at something of a loss. “I dunno,” he said, deleting the ‘James Kemsley’ folder from his inbox and freeing up 132GB of space on his hard drive. “Perhaps I might go and draw some cartoons”.


Ettalong Beach 2003 M

elbourne cartoonist Rolf Heimann was named Cartoonist of the Year at the 19th annual Stan Cross “Stanley” Awards for Cartooning Excellence.

The eternally humble Heimann, who also received the Wacom Digital Illustrator Stanley, said that he "did not deserve" the accolade, but was swiftly shouted down by his colleagues at a packed affair on the NSW Central Coast, this year part of the SpikeFest Comedy Festival. Heimann snagged the award in a strong field which included former Cartoonists of the Year Eric Löbbecke from News Ltd, comic cartoonist James Kemsley (‘Ginger Meggs’), Alan Moir from The Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian Financial Review's David Rowe and first-time nominee Vince O'Farrell from The Illawarra Mercury. Rolf and Lila Heimann will also enjoy a South Pacific cruise for two courtesy of P&O South Pacific. Recipients of 2003 divisional Stanleys were The Australian's Sturt Krygsman (General Illustrator), Canberra freelance cartoonist David Pope (Corel Humorous Illustrator), and Rod Emmerson formerly of APN and now at The Auckland Herald (Editorial/Political Cartoonist), who took home a second award in his division. The Stanley for Caricaturist was presented to The Australian Financial Review's David Rowe, giving him a hat-trick of statuettes in this category. The West Australian's Dean Alston received the Stanley for Single Panel Gag becoming the firstever WA cartoonist to be awarded the honour. After a career spanning over 25 years Queenslander Sean Leahy received his first Stanley for Comic Strip for ‘Beyond the Black Stump’. The sentimental award for the evening, the Jim Russell Award for Contribution to Australian Cartooning (named after the legendary artist of ‘The Potts’ comic strip) was presented to Bill "WEG" Green, whose career as caricaturist and political cartoonist has made him a household name in Victoria and a veritable "living legend" to scores of successful cartoonists, many of whom were encouraged by his advice when they were starting out. (Stanleys artwork: Sturt Krygsman)

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More Stanleys photos pages 12-14

Stanley Award Nominees 2003 (recipients in bold) Comic Strip Peter Broelman Gary Clark Roger Fletcher James Kemsley Sean Leahy Gerard Piper Allan Salisbury Single Gag Dean Alston Mat Golding Jon Kudelka Tony Lopes Mark Lynch Vince O'Farrell General Illustrator Tony Bella Dave Follett Sturt Krygsman

Brett Lethbridge Paul Newman John Tiedemann Wacom Digital Illustrator Tony Bela Pat Campbell Michael Dutkiewicz Rolf Heimann Michael Perkins John Shakespeare Corel Humorous Illustrator Scott Bailey Pat Campbell Ed Huxley Reg Lynch Paul Newman David Pope

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Caricaturist Tom Jellett Sturt Krygsman Brett Lethbridge Eric Lรถbbecke David Rowe John Shakespeare

Most popular cartoon drawn at the Stanleys conference using a Wacom tablet and Painter software Pat Campbell

Coffs Harbour City Rotary Club Editorial/Political Cartoonist Warren Brown Rod Emmerson Mark Knight John Kudelka Bill Leak Alan Moir

Jim Russell Award for Contribution to Australian Cartooning Bill "WEG" Green

Cartoon on the Night Lee Sheppard

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Cartoonist of the Year Rolf Heimann James Kemsley Eric Lรถbbecke Alan Moir Vince O'Farrell David Rowe


Cartoonist of the Year!

Rolf Heimann

t’s hard not to think of Rolf ‘Lofo’ Heimann as a character from the pen of another great Australian cartoonist, Michael Leunig, navigating the turbulent seas of the twentieth century with a teapot full of convictions and a quiet curly-headed optimisim.

I

He has certainly travelled a long and winding road on his way to the 2003 Gold Stanley. Rolf was born in 1940 in Dresden, Germany and survived the bombing destruction of his home city, which claimed the lives of many of his family. The experience made him into a passionate lifelong opponent of war. With little enthusiasm for the remilitarisation of his country during the Cold War, he escaped from Stalinist East Germany when he was only 15, illegally crossing the border alone.

For two years he sailed around the Pacific, a voyage which resulted in his marriage to a Samoan woman, Lila, and the writing of the travel book Knocking on Heaven’s Door. After his return to Australia he concentrated on painting, writing, cartooning and illustrating. The products of his prolific rapidograph and inky toothbrush first appeared in the Nation Review, then in Punch and other overseas magazines. As a member of Greenpeace and a participant in environmental protests he has been arrested many times and proudly spent some time in Pentridge prison, where he wrote one of his books (A Kingdom for a Hat, published by Lothian, and illustrated by John Spooner). Rolf writes in English and German and

In the west he apprenticed himself to a cabinet maker and attended art school. When West Germany re-introduced conscription Rolf was faced with the prospect of having to fight the friends he had left behind. So he migrated to Australia, unable to speak English, at the age of 18. For some years he worked his way around Australia, fruit picking, labouring on the railways and in factories, all the while writing and sketching. After his English had improved, he settled in Melbourne and worked for printers and publishers, finally running his own art studio. A keen skindiver and environmentalist, he published a book about Australian fishes (The Fishbook) and took part in protests against French nuclear tests in the Pacific. This led him in 1974 to sail his own boat 'La Flor' to the Tuamotu islands.

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is a member of writers' organisations in Germany and Australia. He has represented Australian cartoonists at conferences in Hungary, France, America, China, Japan and Cuba. His books include two collections of cartoons (Unfair to Hippocrits and No Emus for Antarctica), the novel Wattle and Dope (published by Angus & Robertson), the childrens book A City by a River (Oxford University Press), Seven Little Aliens (a collection of short stories) and over 20 childrens books (published in Australia by Five Mile Press, Penguin, Lothian and others). Some of Rolf’s children’s books have become bestsellers and have been translated into German, Danish, Spanish, Korean, Japanese, Thai, Indonesian, Estonian and Chinese, selling millions of copies worldwide. .


David employed the modeling techniques he uses for his political sculptures to create what became known on the night as “The Dick” – a bronze rendering of the character Uncle Dick from Jim Russell’s long-running comic strip ‘The Potts’. “I sculpted the likeness from Super Sculpey,” said Rowe (see pic at right). “I use Sculpey for the figures in the Fin Review as it's bakeable but it seems to work quite well for casting purposes.” “Usually wax is used for the originals and I was worried the Sculpey might pose a few problems during the casting process.”

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hen Bill Green (above) accepted this year’s award for Contribution to Australian Cartooning at the 2003 Stanleys, he took home a brand new piece of hardware that is guaranteed to ensure intensive care for any editor Warren Brown might hurl it at.

“As it turned out the people at Crawfords Casting were more than happy to work with it.

The Silver Stanley Award was renamed the Jim Russell Award from 2003, and to celebrate, a solid bronze statuette was commissioned from the master of 3-D caricature, David Rowe.

“It's an expensive process, costing $600, but once they have a cast made getting something the size of Uncle Dick costs $200 a pop.”

“I didn't use an armature as the foundry people need to be able to remove the sculpture from the plaster cast.”

Discussion: James Kemsley cited the continuing viability of the ACA as the main reason for a fee hike. (Carried)

The Australian Cartoonists' Association Inc. Annual General Meeting 11 October 2003

Motion 4: As the ACA is an incorporated company, that the "National Committee" be known, and referred to, as "The Board".

The ACA AGM was held at the Ettalong Memorial Beach Club on the 2003 Stanleys weekend. 26 financial full members of the Association were in attendance.

Moved by James Kemsley. Seconded by Peter Broelman. (Carried)

Other business

Resolutions from motions received:

Lindsay Foyle moved a vote of appreciation to James Kemsley for taking on the interim Presidency of the Association at short notice.

Motion 1: That a subcommittee be formed to redraft the Constitution to truly reflect the National Association in the new millenium. That the draft be considered by the National Committee and then put to the membership for approval or otherwise.

The hard work done by Treasurer Mick Horne in turning around the ACA's finances did not go unnoticed with a rousing motion of acknowledgment from the floor.

Moved by James Kemsley. Seconded by Roger Fletcher. (Carried)

Roger Fletcher requested leads from members to help the Board secure future sponsors for the Stanley Awards. Sean Leahy mentioned that sponsorship approaches need to made immediately and in person rather than by mail and that we consider charity support to encourage financial backing.

Motion 2: That a joining fee or a rejoining fee of $100 be set. Moved by James Kemsley. Seconded by Peter Broelman.

Discussion: Sean Leahy moved Sebastian Kemsley helps celebrate the 88th birthday of ACA lifean amendment to the motion to the effect that the ACA offer a member Tony Rafty, during the Mayor’s BBQ at Stanleys 2003 two-tiered joining fee structure - namely, a joining fee of $100 for full members and $50 for Pat Campbell suggested that the membership Associates, Seniors and Students, as well as a standard application/renewal form carry the option for members to rejoining or "lapsing" fee of $50 for all members. Seconded by receive Inkspot as an emailed PDF file. Jack Edmunds. (Carried as amended)

Roger Fletcher moved a vote of thanks to Peter Broelman and Lee Sheppard for their web board maintenance.

Motion 3: That annual membership fees to be set at $125 + GST from 1 July, 2004. Moved by James Kemsley. Seconded by Pat Campbell.

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Steve Panozzo, ACA Secretary

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Communism with a human face There are 1,292,474,042 citizens of the People’s Republic of China. Joanne Brooker is going to draw every last one…

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ho would have thought that no sooner do I settle back into Australian life after nine months of travelling, that I would be off to the up-side-down part of the world, China!

everywhere) and we always ended up drawing the staff! The first time I did this gig in China I was nervous. So many people had made jokes about not saying the wrong thing in a Communist country. I didn’t want to offend anyone, pretty hard as a caricaturist! My worries were completely unfounded.

Last April I was invited to Shanghai to be a part of a new promotional experiment for the shopping centre chain, Carrefour. A team of overseas cartoonists including Ian Sharpe, Chris Kelly, Malcolm Evans and myself were set up as "live" caricaturists for the many hundreds (and hundreds) of Chinese people that shop at Carrefour. We were a great hit and based on that success, it was decided to do it all again in Beijing this October.

I have perfected the art of "live" caricature. I can now create a likeness using minimal line work very quickly while still doing the chat. Even with limited Chinese I was able to communicate with expressions and a lot of hand waving. I found it fascinating to see the different ways people deal with being stared at by me while I draw them in public. Many older Chinese men gave me hard stares, quite intimidating, until they got their picture and broke into big smiles. The women put on their best head-tilted pose and, as often happens here, some people hung over the desk to see their drawing before I had even got the pencil to the paper.

The brief was to create at least twenty five line caricatures in six hours. We managed to get it down to one every three to five minutes. We worked from three pm to nine pm with a couple of breaks. We worked fourteen days out of the sixteen. Each person we drew had to have a shopper docket to show they had spent the equivalent of twenty Aussie dollars in Carrefour. They put their names on a board and lined up for their free caricature. There was an occasional push and shove in line but nothing the security couldn't handle. There was always people begging for us to do just one more at the end (as

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Children were especially fun and I got kisses and little presents from them. We were given sweets, flowers and beer from happy customers! We had lots of invites to teach us Chinese and offers to take us to dinner. I found people reacted with laughter and appreciation.

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Aussies are rarely so forthcoming without a few ales under their belts!

dry ice and a cage for Can Can girls. Each singer has to scull four beers at the end of his set while the audience slams the table with a block of wood in appreciation. Then bring On the Acrobats!! I don’t know their Chinese name but I call them The Rubber Monks.

Caricaturists are observers of the human face. We are fascinated with how two eyes, a nose, a mouth all set on a skull can be shuffled about to create completely different characters.

After a huge shopping stint we were weighed down with bags stuffed with fake designer gear and precious ethnic artifacts… or junk if you like. I was running out of Moccona coffee and had eaten far too many fried snake gizzards on basted sea urchin armpits (or something).

Just as with our western faces, there is no end of variations in the Chinese face. Naturally there are characteristics that are Asian, but there are definite differences in face types. The faces range from the delicate round pale face to heavier-set darker more Polynesian faces.

Chinese food is delicious and often imaginative in its ingredients. On one occasion we tried to be independent travelers and ordered lunch by pointed at the squiggly lines on the menu. We got five plates of raw cabbage, blobs, string and a black egg topped with a prawn. Fortunately, or not depending on your point of view, KFC is a huge hit in China and they make a great wrap and have the cleanest toilets. I even had garlic snails at Pizza Hut. Who says travel isn't broadening!

On the Beijing trip, Brad Whiteman from Sydney was my partner artist. Steve Malley from New Zealand and Antonio Savilla from Spain were the other cartoonists to work the gig. Antonio (pronounced Anntoooonio in a deep Spanish voice) and crazy Yank comic book artist Steve, acted like mad monkeys and delighted their victims, oops, clients! Steve even drew a mini comic book of his adventures.

Finally after sixteen days hard graft the last day arrived. We drew our last sets of caricatures and that was it.

We all had our own styles of drawing which made it interesting to see how each of us observed people. The ability to put on a show as well as draw was a big factor in our success.

It was exhausting work and often our eyes stung and our brains started to close down. The pressure of "live" drawing in these circumstances is more than many artists would be able to handle.

In between what we jokingly referred to as "work" we were total tourists. And why not! One great experience was climbing The Great Wall near Tienjin. This spot is tucked away in the countryside and completely empty of tourists, apart from us of course.

The entertainment factor is a large part of the event. You have to be able to convey a positive empathetic response to your client. It takes great nerve to put yourself in the spotlight in a situation where you can't gauge the possible response to your work.

Just like in the postcards, The Wall clambers it’s way up craggy mountains like a silver grey snake. Each section ran its length until encountering a mountain peak. At this point The Great Wall turns into The Great Bush track so we climbed up to the toppermost part. From a ruined stone lookout the view was very special. The Wall continued its way over the green mountains on towards the horizon.

I would strongly recommend taking yourself out of your comfort zone as an artist and use your talents to experience the world and it's people. The fun and pleasure we were able to share has reaffirmed with me that art is the language of the world. Joanne Brooker worked as an editorial illustrator with Brisbane’s Courier Mail for 10 years. She now runs the Purple Spider studio where she continues to work as a illustrator, cartoonist, caricaturist and cartooning teacher.

Walking around Tiananmen Square brings mixed feelings. Standing on the hard pavers that make up the huge area, it is hard to not think about the images of the massacre that occurred there. There is no point trying to ask anyone anything about the event as it has been apparently collectively wiped from the general consciousness. Instead I flew a kite in memory of the students.

Joanne is running a Cartooning and Caricature course at the McGregor Summer School in Queensland. The full day classes run from January 5 to 16, 2004. For bookings, phone McGregor School QSQ on 07 4631 2755. You can also catch Joanne at the Woodford Folk Festival in Queensland. Joanne is taking two full day cartoon workshops on December 27 and December 30. Drop in and say hello!

Serious reflection aside, we managed to uphold the Aussie tradition and wore silly hats as we wandered around the Forbidden City, as you do. A mad night at The Banana Club has given me some ideas for the next Stanleys night. A stage with fountains laser lights and

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For more info, contact Joanne via her website: www.purplespiderstudio.com.au. Ph: 0249691529, mobile: 0422 662 019

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Editorial cartoonist of the Year, Rod Emmerson, with Coffs Harbour City Rotary Club President Vince Brooker Cartoonist of the Year, Rolf Heimann, with award presenter and Stanleys conference speaker Matthew Martin

Caricaturist of the Year, David Rowe

Stanleys MC Bill Leak and award presenter Norm Hetherington

Max Foley, General Illustrator of the Year Sturt Krygsman, and Stanley nominee David Follett

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ACA President James Kemsley assists weth the cartoon auction

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Peter Broelman, Luke Fox, Sturt Krygsman, Steve Panozzo and Stanley nominee Tom Jellet

Joan Green and husband Bill, recipient of the 2003 Jim Russell Award

David Spencer fromWacom and Richard Dodd from Corel present Pat Campbell with his prizes for the best cartoon drawn over the Stanleys weekend using a Wacom drawing tablet and Corel Painter software

Sean Leahy accepts the Comic Strip of the Year award, for his strip ‘Beyond the Black Stump’

Lila Heimann, Rolf Heimann, David Pope, John Spooner, Jeanette Pope, Judy Horacek and Tom Jellet

Auctioneer Warren Brown, on song with MC Bill Leak 27 (yes, 27)-time Stanley winners Bill Leak and Brian Kogler

Stanleys photos by Tony Lopes, Steve Panozzo and David Pope

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Tanya Creer and Warren Brown

Separated at birth: Austin Broelman models the artist smock, signed by cartoonists from around the world

Maryanne Fogarty and Jenny Hughes

Greg Smith accepts the Stanley for Single Gag Cartoonist on behalf of fellow West Australian Dean Alston

Max Foley, Errol Nathaniel and Gary Lightfoot

Marie Fletcher, Peter Broelman, Roger Fletcher and Mick Horne

Tom Jellet, David Pope, John Farmer, Cartoon on the Night winner Lee Sheppard and Stanley nominee Jon Kudelka

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attempt to move the cursor across the entire screen you simply point and click in one movement on the tablet.

Anyone seen my

With your new tablet you may need to deactivate the double-click feature as it can make the cursor hesitate with a small delay before making a stroke. The computer will think you are trying to double click and will wait for your second tap of the tablet with the pen.

tablets?

The Graphire has a small cave at the far end side of the tablet where you can conveniently place the tablet pen without fear of losing it somewhere in the piles of paper on your desk. The pen comfortably slides in and won't slip out from its compartment. This is something I'm sure an artist has prompted them to design. And about bloody time too.

After soaking it up at the Stanleys, ‘cartoon on the night’ winner Lee Sheppard discovers the perfect pick-me-up

Which tablet to choose? Intuos or Graphire? Well the main difference is in the level of pressure sensitivity. Graphire is limited to 512 levels of sensitivity as opposed to the Intuos which has 1024 levels. So drawing a thin to thick line would produce a finer and thicker line with the Intuos (retail approx. $587 for a 6x8 inch tablet). There are obviously more differences between the models when you see their retail price, but you can investigate further online at www.wacom.com for more detailed specifications.

s those attending the Stanleys may have noticed I had a few reds, and proved so by drawing some very "interesting" cartoons on the night. Interesting enough to win a Wacom Graphics Tablet. Sober or tipsy I'll draw nude people with big noses for laughs any day, especially with a Wacom.

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The Graphire 3 came in to my hands at the right moment. I'd grown out of the little Wacom Pen Partner I’d had for years. The little version had served its purpose but it was time to move on and the Graphire entered the scene.

For Strippers and Gaggers and even the Humorous, I'd probably suggest the Graphire 3 as their first tablet (retail approx. $260 for 6x8 inches). Graphire would be great for Gary Clark to colour Swamp, Intuos would be great for David Rowe drawing his editorials.

It seems simple enough: if you want to draw on your computer, use a graphics tablet. But which size? I've been using a tablet with a drawing area the size of a cigarette packet and had become quite content with just that. However once you've been on them for awhile you see why size does matter.

Tips and tricks are available including a tutorial on drawing and animating anime in Macromedia Flash: http://ap.wacom.co.jp/techni cal/technical_index.html The bottom line is, don't waste time with other brands. I've seen them and tried them and nothing compares to the technology learnt and implemented in the Wacom series of tablets.

The active area on these tablets can be thought of as representing your computer screen. With the small cigarette-pack tablets, one centimetre drawn on the The next generation: Lee Sheppard (centre) test drives the new tablet produces a line on Wacom Cintiq at Stanleys 2003, which allows the user to draw Lee Sheppard is the Director of screen of around 6cm (length directly onto the monitor screen. Toon Studio in Sydney, and will vary according to your creator of the comic strip ‘Cactus monitor size). On the larger Island’. He is also the resident models, the same line produces a length of almost web wizard for the Australian Cartoonists’ Association. equal value. The 6x8 inch tablet, for example, acts more Graphire 3 is available as: like you're drawing on A4 paper. Larger variants of G430 (tablet size: 8.27 x 0.69 x 8.20 inches) these tablets are great for architects or people who are G630 (tablet size: 10.85 x 0.71 x 10.12 inches) frequently using large format papers for artwork. Platforms currently supported:

The advantage in using a tablet is a far more productive time on your computer. Instead of having to stop colouring the artwork and clicking on your eraser tool in the toolbox palette on screen you simply use the other end of the tablet pen where the eraser is. Instead of dragging the mouse across the desk in an

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Windows 98SE, Me, 2000, XP; CD-ROM Drive & USB port Mac OS 9, or Mac OS X v 10.1.5 or later; Power Macintosh or iMac; CDROM Drive & USB port Graphire 3 tablets come with Painter Classic, Photo XPRESS and Pen Plus software free.

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The National Cartoonists Society (US) In the second column for Inkspot from the NCS, Steve McGarry talks about the US syndication business and unveils his new daily comic strip ‘Mullets’.

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ick Stromoski and I have been as thick as thieves since we first met in New York during the 1996 NCS Reuben Awards weekend. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Stromoski, he is a brilliant cartoonist whose work in greeting cards, advertising and book illustration has earned him three NCS Division Awards from eleven nominations. He is the creator of ‘Soup To Nutz’, a laugh-out-loud daily comic strip that is distributed throughout the US by United Media, and he's a fellow director of the National Cartoonists Society. We meet up a couple of times a year at NCS functions, but he lives in Connecticut, on the east coast of the US and I'm 3,000 miles away on the other side of the country, in Huntington Beach, California, so we also spend hours on the phone, ragging each other unmercifully, indulging in disgraceful speculation and gossip about our peers, trading smutty innuendoes and giggling like schoolboys. For years now, Stromoski and I had been threatening to do a project together. We enjoy cracking each other up and we needed to claim our telephone bills as business expenses. We'd each thrown a couple of ideas into the pot but nothing had really caught our

imagination, until one evening, a couple of years ago, the outline and premise for ‘Mullets’ popped into my head. The next morning I was straight on the blower to Rick ... and within 20 minutes, my fax machine started whirring and Rick's sketches brought Kevin and Scab to life. One thing we hadn't actually discussed was who would do what in any collaboration between us. (After all, we are both seasoned writers and cartoonists ... oh, alright, alright ... we are both dreadful "old hacks.") So that fax pretty much defined our roles on ‘Mullets’ - it was obvious that I would write it and Rick would draw it. We both work very quickly, so within a couple of weeks we had a couple of Sunday strips and three or four weeks of dailies inked and finished. We pitched the idea to Universal Press Syndicate's Lee Salem in the late spring of 2002 and he liked it. A few weeks later, having followed up with some more samples, Universal offered us

a contract. There are a lot of misconceptions about US syndication, so perhaps this is a good opportunity to clear some of them up. There are probably only five major US syndicates - Universal Press (home of ‘The Far Side’, ‘Calvin & Hobbes’ and ‘Garfield’); United Media (‘Peanuts’ and ‘Dilbert’); King Features (‘Zits’, ‘Hagar’ and ‘Blondie’); Tribune (‘Dick Tracy’ and ‘Shoe’); and Creators Syndicate (‘B.C.’ and ‘The Wizard of Id’). A couple of smaller syndicates, most notably The Washington Post Writers Group, round out the pack. The major syndicates receive thousands of submissions each year ... and probably only launch two or three new features each year. When they sign a strip, the syndicates will invest a lot of time and money in developing that feature. (In return, they will want 50% of the revenue, of course!) An editor is assigned to work with the creator, honing and developing the strip's content and focus. Typically, a launch date will be at least a year after the contracts are signed, so there is a lot of time to fiddle and tweak the idea into shape. Thousands of glossy press kits are designed and printed and press releases and bios prepared. A couple of months before the launch, the sales force go out on the road,

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knocking on newspaper editors' doors and pre-selling the strip. If you are lucky, there is a fourmonth selling period in which your strip must gain a viable client list and then the process begins again with the syndicate's next release. If your strip fails to gain momentum in those first few months, the harsh reality is that your duck is dead in the water - because if the sales rep can't persuade an editor to take a chance on the feature after one or two visits, your lovingly-prepared saleskit is highly unlikely to emerge from that rep's briefcase ever again. I always compare syndication to the music business. Getting a syndication deal is similar to securing a recording contract. Getting signed is unbelievably hard ... but that is only the beginning.

Just as an artist with a recording contract has to battle huge odds to actually get a hit record, so the syndicated creator faces overwhelming odds in turning their strip into a success. Anything less than a client list of 200 newspapers and the artist is probably still accepting freelance commissions on the side ... anything less than a client list of 50 papers and the strip is in trouble. If the feature catches on, of course, the rewards can be huge, thanks to worldwide sales, book collections, licensing, animation tie-ins, etc. But this is a hugely competitive business, with hundreds of features competing for a relatively small number of openings on the comics pages and the failure rate is very, very high. It also doesn't help that the US syndication is experiencing one of

the worst troughs in recent memory. Or that the only thing that is selling here at the moment is ‘Opus’, which marks the return of syndicated behemoth Berkeley Breathed to the Sunday pages ... and wouldn't you know that his release date was the day before ‘Mullets’ debuted!!! But yet, even armed with all this daunting knowledge, both Rick and I are very excited about ‘Mullets’. Then again, there's an old adage in cartooning which says that you should always write about what you know. So perhaps it is no coincidence that ‘Mullets’ features a pair of complete and utter idiots. Steve McGarry is President of America's National Cartoonists Society, and is syndicated worldwide with ‘Pop Culture’ and ‘Kid City’. He is also a member of the ACA and a Stanley Award winner.

Supanova Blasts Off in Brisbane

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ollowing a number of successful events in Sydney the first Supanova Pop Culture Expo was held in Brisbane on September 13th and 14th. The result was a resounding success with approximately 7,000 fans attending. As the name implies the event was not targeted at any one specific genre but because the event began as comicfest! it has maintained a very powerful connection with sequential and other illustrative arts. And maintain it did, with creators/artists/writers attending from Australia and internationally. Among the visiting professionals were Mark (‘Ultimate Spider-Man’) Bagley, Ashley (‘Hellspawn’) Wood and Ben (‘30 Days of Night’) Templesmith, who left an indelible mark on fans, especially the ones who also attended the Supanova Masterclass featuring the three of them Friday night at Griffith University. They were also joined by local creators Eddie (‘From Hell’) Campbell and Jon (‘Go Boy 7’) Sommariva, the latter of whom cut short a US promotional tour for his publisher Dark Horse Comics, so that he could be in attendance for his first hometown expo. As always Artists' Alley was very well patronised and featured a number of local creators and publishers showcasing their comics. Publishers Ozone Studio, Phosphorescent, Cult

Supanova Masterclass with Ultimate Spider-Man s Mark Bagley Fiction Comics Australia and Random Ramblings all had new products to share as did individual creators such as Alex Major, Donald Brooker, Louise Graber, Patrick Alexander and others. Also facing off each other in booths were two outstanding displays of illustration, Wellbound Productions and ‘Batrisha the Vampire Girl’, from opposite ends of the spectrum. Wellbound founder David Diezel has very heavy manga influences, something that was permeating right throughout the expo, and Batrisha creator, Dillon Naylor of ‘Da' n' Dill’ fame, was spreading the word about his youth-focused title from a more traditional full-colour cartoon style.From talks on how to create

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manga, to seminars and Q&A sessions with the artists, the Quick-Draw and Fan Art competitions, and combined with a vast array of comics and collectibles to buy from interstate & local dealers, the whole Supanova experience was amazingly well received. In fact the organisers wasted no time at all and rebooked with the RNA Showgrounds for September next year. Don't blame Supanova though, blame it on the Brisbane public for having such a blast. Daniel Zachariou Event Director Supanova Expo www.supanova.com.au


Publication news

Other Penguin books to be published in time for Christmas include a new title from Michael Leunig, Strange Creature (paperback, $29.95) and a third collection of The Darwin Awards, illustrated by Queensland cartoonist Malcolm McGookin (paperback, $19.95).

The team behind The Chaser newspaper and satirical television program CNNNN has won the award for 'Outstanding Humorous Book' at the inaugural Australian Comedy Awards, organised by the Melbourne Comedy Festival on the 26th of November.

The Darwin Awards III: Survival of the Fittest catalogues “hilariously macabre mishaps and misadventures, honouring those who improve our gene pool by inadvertently removing themselves from it… From the sheriff who inadvertently shot himself twice to the insurance defrauder who amputated his leg with a chainsaw, The Darwin Awards III proves again that when it comes to stupidity, we are the most advanced species on the planet”.

The Chaser’s Annual 2002 was nominated alongside books by cartoonist Michael Leunig (The Stick), John Clarke (The Tournament), Nick Earls (Perfect Skin), and Melbourne cartoonist Andrew Weldon (I’m so sorry little man, I thought you were a hand-puppet).

Closer to the home of this edition of Inkspot, a new edition of Life on the Edge by Canberra (and Melbourne’s) Judy Horacek has just been released by Spinifex. With an introduction by Dale Spender, Life on the Edge is the first of Judy’s five cartoon collections, containing many of her classic feminist and left-leaning cartoons. I’m so sorry little man…, or ISSLMITYWAHP for short, brings together 250 Weldon gems, including cartoons first published in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Australian, The Age, The Spectator and The Big Issue. It has now sold over 8,000 copies and it’s publisher Allen and Unwin look set to begin limited distribution to the US and the UK.

The National Museum is set to launch a third book of cartoons by Canberra cartoonist David Pope as part of its series on Australian English. Aussie English for Beginners Book Three contains 50 illustrated phrases, with definitions written by the Australian National Dictionary Centre. It will be launched in January 2004.

Radio presenter, musician, comedian and children's author James Valentine launched the first long-awaited collection of cartoons by Tohby Riddle on the 30th of September at the Waverley Bowling Club in Sydney. What's the BIG Idea? lovingly reproduces the full-colour cartoons first penned by Tohby for the Good Weekend magazine of The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age in Melbourne.

Scribe Publications in Melbourne have taken note of the success of Peter Craven’s popular annuals, Best Australian Essays, and packaged their own review of the year, in cartoons.

Tohby Riddle is the award-winning creator of internationally published picture books such as The Singing Hat, The Great Escape from City Zoo and The Royal Guest, but this is the first published collection of his cartoons.

Best Australian Political Cartoons 2003 reflects the mainland east coast reading habits of editor Russ Radcliffe in presenting over 150 cartoons by Judy Horacek, Mark Knight, Jon Kudelka, Sean Leahy, Bill

What's the BIG Idea? is published by Penguin/Viking in hardcover, for $29.95.

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Leak, Michael Leunig, Alan Moir, Peter Nicholson, Bruce Petty, David Pope, Geoff Pryor, David Rowe, John Spooner, Andrew Weldon and Cathy Wilcox.

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f his Silver Stanley isn't evidence enough, his Academy Award (the first for an Australian cartoonist) certainly proved that Bruce Petty is a living legend. Although we suspect that such a tag doesn't sit too well with a man who remains affable, approachable and generous to all and sundry. Film Australia launched Petty's latest animated excursion with an appropriately modest celebration on 24 November. Among the small but enthusiastically appreciative throng were a few brethren - namely Ward O'Neill, Eric Lรถbbecke, Steve Panozzo, Stewart McCrae and Luke Fox. Entitled Human Contraptions, this series of ten 5-minute episodes (to be screened on ABC-TV weekly at 10:20pm from 2 December) takes a satirical look at the various "contraptions" that shape our lives - education, sex, finance, the law, the brain, the media, globalism, art, medicine and government. The first-nighters were treated to four of the shorts and responded with healthy applause.

Australia's involvement in the US war on Iraq features prominently, but the book also covers plenty of other recent domestic political issues, from the resignation of the Governor-General to Labor's leadership squabbles.

"The main aim was to take an impressionistic, shorthand, comic look at over-worked, serious subjects," said Petty.

Best Australian Political Cartoons 2003 retails for $30 and includes a thoughtful introduction by writer and historian Don Watson.

"The series is based on general suspicions people have about the institutions we live with.

Rat Race Comics, independent Australian publisher of the Ozcon Award winning Hairbutt the Hippo Private Eye comics, has announced the impending release of a new Hairbutt comic Soft Boiled Tales.

"Representing them as machines at least suggests they are manmade, they wear out and can be fixed even as they do determine how we live." It's very Bruce Petty, with plenty of his characteristic touches, but it's interesting to note the contributions made by his son, Sam, in editing, graphics and sound.

This will be the first Hairbutt the Hippo release in over three years. Soft Boiled Tales will feature a fully-painted 13 page Hairbutt the Hippo adventure called 'Chariot's of the Clods' (written by Bodine Amerikah and painted by Jason Paulos), as well as a 6 page Frank Miller parody called 'That Fat Bastard' (written and drawn by Paulos).

Bruce's intricately structured, finely-wired mechanisms are used to great effect, illustrating institutional complexity like some flow-chart gone mad. And, predictably, with this trademarked satire comes plenty of laughs. Steve Panozzo

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of an editorial), it lends a coherent feel to the whole book.

Reviews

The Ink is a mixed bag, with something for everyone: the short humour pieces will appeal most to some readers, while others will find themselves engaged by the longer narratives. Editor Aaron Burgess has done an excellent job of inspiring contributors from across Australia. His original concept was to create a book that could be made available in music stores, and comics and music do create a great vibe together. It is aimed at a mature audience. Overall, The Ink is an essential snapshot of underground comics in Australia at this time, a time when there are very few anthology titles around. As an anthology it follows somewhat in the tradition of The Fox, though currently only three issues are envisaged. The next issue, featuring continuations of many of these tales, is due out early in 2004. For more information see: http://www.comicsaustralia.com Ian C. Thomas currently draws serials for The Ink and manga comic, Xuan Xuan. His earlier work includes Maelstrom , Reverie and the Busker Jim strip for Melbourne paper City Extra.

The Complete Far Side By Gary Larson The Ink #1

Published by Andrews McMeel Publishing,

Published by FlatFly Media, Australia

Kansas City USA

64p, A5, B&W, $6

A$275 Reviewed by Neil Matterson

Reviewed by Ian C. Thomas

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he new Australian anthology comic, The Ink, is about music. Beyond this broad theme, the seventeen contributing artists (myself included), have gone entirely in their own directions.

This two volume hardback set complete with substantial slipcase, is of steatopygous proportions, weighing in at an astounding eight and three quarter kilos, thereby almost rendering it completely useless as a bedtime read. Those with strong upper thighs will disregard this advice.

The various stories, from one to eight pages in length, are as diverse in style as in content. There are suburban slice-of-life stories, fantasy pieces, humour, satire and tributes. While the execution ranges from amateur to entirely professional, the work is generally of a high standard, particularly given the underground nature of the book.

The Complete Far Side presents every Far Side cartoon ever syndicated. Volume One is from 1980-1986. Volume Two is from 1987-1994. This is more than 4000 cartoons with 1100 of them having never been published in book form before. (And possibly for good reason.) The production manager for this three-years-in-the-making project describes Larson, among other words, as a perfectionist. And this shows in the finished product. The cartoons are in chronological order on a high quality paper, with approximately fifty percent of the cartoons in full colour. The attention to detail shows. Every cartoon is dated. Some with accompanying letters from disgruntled readers.

A bit rough around the edges in presentation, The Ink fairly bulges with enjoyable comic reading, all wrapped in an appealing and eyecatching green cover by Doug Holgate, and with a low cover price. With the eclectic artist styles including cartoony, manga, and semirealistic, what comes through most powerfully is an Australian sensibility, even when not actually set in the streets, pubs and houses of our cities. While this is never spelt out (particularly in the absence

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or a single panel feature the published collection is far from a single panel production.

At the time that the Far Side cartoons were originally published I was a moderate fan. Having read these two volumes I can now say I’m three points above moderate.

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Sounds interesting now, doesn’t it? Creator, Douglas Holgate has filled a niche in the Australian Comics market with his offer of a fun filled comic for all ages. Holgate, a commercial illustrator and toy designer, has found inspiration from the films of Pixar, entertaining movies such as Toy Story, Monsters INC and Finding Nemo. Like the makers of these successful films he has learnt certain lessons: be cute but not saccharine sweet; be funny but not patronising; talk to your audience and not at them. Add some Three Stooges and Chuck Jones and the resulting book is an enjoyable and endearing look into the monsters that live in the closet and the mishaps of childhood. Sporting a full colour matt finish cover, this 48 page book features some strong line work that fills the characters full of life and provides effective backgrounds. The panel-to-panel storytelling is very tight but in places some scenes tend to go on a little long. The book feels like it was a spontaneous effort, like a dream itself, and the story and art benefits from this impulsiveness. In terms of production it is a well-made book with the only minor distraction some erased pencil markings being accidentally scanned in places. The book contains two stories, a 40 page main feature and eight page back-up, that describes any 10-year-old boy’s perfect day. It also features pin ups by other illustrators, including a spectacular piece by HQ’s Craig Phillips. Tales From Under Your Bed is a great book and highly recommended. Mark Selan is co-publisher of Ozcomics and an administrator of ozcomic.com.

The wonderful thing that a collection like this gives is the ability to judge history (Far Side history) in one concise viewing. It’s the accelerated version of watching a grub transform into a butterfly. The books are interdispersed with the thoughts and musings of Larson. Retail wise this reviewer did the patriotic thing and paid the full $275 to purchase it from my local bookstore. Others may wish to purchase over the internet from America where I believe at the time of writing it was available for approx. $80US plus postage. How does one sum up the humour portrayed in 4000 cartoons? Weird. But interesting weird. Neil Matterson is the editorial cartoonist for The Sunday Mail in Brisbane

Tales from Under Your Bed By DA Holgate Published by F1 Comics (www.f1-comics.com) 48p, $6.50 Reviewed by Mark Selan

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hree kids go to a birthday party. A simple, if not plain, premise.

On the way to the party our three principle characters are chased by a group of bullies, who happen to be werewolves. To escape, they jump on a bus driven by a familiar fellow, who sports sideburns, has a fondness for rock ‘n roll and cheeseburgers. The bus deposits them at an Incan Temple, which entails a roller coaster ride. They also run into Giant Mexican wrestlers, talking statues and a large ape, named Mr Kong. Oh, and the three principle characters are a Junior version of Frankenstein, a rather jittery Reptilian boy and what can only be described as a teddy bear with scales and horns.

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News from ‘the Bunker ‘ The cartoon gallery in Coffs Harbour has launched it’s holiday program, and is picking up a few awards of it’s own.

Designed to both entertain and inform the exhibition includes a host of interactive features combining sight and sound in an up-tempo environment. Fifty original framed animation cells on original backgrounds show action poses from the series and an interactive jukebox plays songs created for the televisions series.

Obviously the public who voted over the 3-month period of the Rotary Awards Exhibition for 2003 did not agree with the judge’s choice of David Pope’s winning political cartoon as Cartoon of the Year, but they did stick with the same artist.

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A Motion simulator gives children the opportunity to place themselves in an animated scene by manipulating optical illusions.

David’s ‘seagulls’ entry in the International section, Technology - Life Made Easy, was ‘People’s Choice’ for 2003. Congratulations David.

t’s good news from the Bunker Cartoon Gallery.

Recently we were awarded the NSW Regional Tourism ‘Business Excellence in Tourism Award’ for Heritage and Culture, for the second consecutive year. We are also finalists in the NSW Tourism State Awards. The gallery has just launched its holiday period exhibition, which will run from November to March 2003. It’s all about the fascinating world of animation, combined with the timeless appeal of Rock n’ Roll, featured in an exciting children’s exhibition Li’l Elvis Jones and the Truckstoppers.

We have been waiting 2 years for the exhibition, which over 150,000 children have already visited during its tour to Victoria, South Australia, Western Australia and Tasmania. The exhibition tells the story of animation and is based on the Australian Children’s Television Foundation animated series of the same name.

Rotary 2003 Cartoon Awards ‘People’s Choice’

Also included are technical drawings and paintings demonstrating how one scene from the television series was created from conception to completion. The series Lil Elvis Jones is the single largest animation project made in Australia to date, employing some 200 artists and technicians who worked for 4 years to produce the $11.8 million project. If you’re driving Highway 1 for the holidays and pass through Coffs – take time out and make us a ‘must see’.

International Disability Day 3rd December 2003 Sydney cartoonist Richard Jones will again be conducting workshops at the Bunker for people with disabilities. The programme was so successful last year that we have been allocated funding to take part in a Celebration of Ability again this year. Many thanks to Cartoonist Cathy Wilcox for permitting us to use some of her disability cartoons as part of the project.

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If you can’t make it to the Bunker how about keeping us informed on what’s happening in your part of the world? The Bunker has a monthly column in the local newspaper and material is always hard to find. Email bunkergallery@bigpond.com Attn: Margaret. Best Wishes to all for the Festive Season and a safe and prosperous New Year. Margaret Bridgman Gallery Administrator


The National Museum’s annual cartoon exhibition is digging in for another year. selection of Australia’s best political cartoons from a year marked by the conflict in Iraq opens at the Queensland Museum in Brisbane on December 18.

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Developed and presented by the National Museum of Australia, this popular annual exhibition debuts this year for the first time outside Canberra. A special feature of the exhibition is a series of political sculptures by Sydney Morning Herald artist John Shakespeare. “These works remind us yet again of the importance ofgraphic art in our newspapers and magazines,” says National Museum curator Guy Hansen.

“With a few strokes of the pen the cartoonists manage to dissect the most complex issues reflecting the big issues of the day.” “Deep lines were drawn in Australian society as the ongoing debate over the war dominated the news. The resignation of the Governor-General, leadership struggles in the Labor Party, John Howard’s decision to stay on as Prime Minister, the release of Pauline Hanson from gaol and the fate of 58,000 sheep stranded in the Middle East all momentarily claimed the headlines.” The exhibition features 105 of the best entries in the 2003 Australian Political Humour Competition, the work of 59 artists. A panel of judges including Queensland governor Quentin Bryce and former Queensland premier Wayne Goss will decide the winner of the Best Political Satire award, to be

announced in late January 2004. Last year for the first time one artist, The Age’s Ron Tandberg, won both Best Political Satire and People’s Choice awards. This year’s winner of the major award will receive $5000, up from $1000. The winner of each city’s People’s Choice award will be announced at the opening of the exhibition in the next venue.

Behind the Lines runs until 23 February 2004 in Brisbane. It then moves to: Melbourne - RMIT (15 March to 24 April) Canberra - The National Museum of Australia (21 May to 27 June) Perth - The Constitutional Centre of WA (9 July to 31 August) Darwin - The Library and Office of the Legislative Assembly (10 September to 14 October) Cartoons this page (clockwise from top left): Sean Leahy, Vince O’Farrell, John Ditchburn, John Farmer

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VFL/AFL player, coach, or visionary. Instead, he enthralled the crowd with mostly unconnected reminiscences of his younger days and of the philosophies he has developed through experience and guidance provided by various mentors. His talk was full of good humour and, at times, selfeffacing in terms of the mystique which usually attends figures of his stature in the community. I think Ron and his charming wife Cheralyn enjoyed breaking bread with the ‘Mugs’ and we hope to see them again some time in the future.

T

he Victorian Cartoonists’ ‘Mugs Club’ enjoyed another successful gathering at Dimattina’s restaurant on November 5. It was a double-header arranged to feature AFL living legend Ron Barassi, and his great contribution to the art of caricature (as a subject, of course!) and to celebrate the on-going career of the club’s doyen practitioner, Bill (Weg) Green. Courtesy of club founder, Jim Bridges, the room was festooned with miriad examples of Bill’s work and the usual Wall of Fame displayed a panoply of Barassi caricatures in honour of the great man. Bill’s long-time friend and colleague, Oskar Skalberg, entertained the throng with some credible evidence that their lives together at The Herald and Weekly Times were not always consumed by work. Christine Unsworth, also from HWT, but better known as head of the Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal, lauded Bill’s selfless work on behalf of that annual appeal, particularly his contribution of the famous VFL/AFL premiership posters. Sale of these posters has raised a huge amount of money for the hospital over many decades.

In response, Bill’s usual anecdotal survey of his long life in the cartooning game was spiced, on this occasion, with reference to a current exchange of correspondence between local cartoonist/illustrator Leigh Hobbs (of ‘Old Tom’ fame) and the normally reclusive Ronald Searle in France. Fascinating stuff!

Apart from that, good food was plentiful, the libations were obviously enjoyed by all (one member apparently twice tried to climb the Wall of Fame, but fell short on both occasions!), whilst the raffle of a Paul Harvey original (of Barassi) and auction of a limited edition Weg celebration poster, put some urgently needed funds into the club coffers. Those monies will help to ensure we are able to enjoy similar gettogethers in future. Another great night thanks mainly to the hard yards put in by Jim Bridges, Paul Harvey, Tony Bramwell et.al.

Ron Barassi’s talk was surprisingly not centred on his fabulous career as

Story and cartoons: Robert Mason

In Melbourne, The Herald-Sun has drafted two Australian strips for their new comic line-up.

James Kemsley’s ‘Ginger Meggs’ and Dave Allen’s ‘Dog House’ join the Hun for the 2004 season.

Pre-season draft news South Australian cartoonist Peter Broelman (cartoon at right) is the new editorial flyhalf for APN. Broelman replaces this year’s editorial cartooning Stanley winner, Rod Emmerson, who has been drafted to The Auckland Herald in exchange for New Zealand’s berth in the Rugby World Cup final. Emmerson was recruited after the Herald delisted veteran NZ cartoonist Malcolm Evans from their run-on squad (see Inkspot 38). Meanwhile, freelance Sydney coach Fiona Katauskas has revealed the Waratahs will be adopting a strict youth policy in the pre-season draft. Katauskas missed the October action at Ettalong Beach this year with what was thought to be a groin injury, but scans have revealed it was in fact brand new bouncing baby boy Max.

MORE INKSPORT INSIDE… Inkspot 39

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Inkspot 39