Parenting Cartoons

Children's Television Workshop, Gemini Publications, Newsday


Had a lot of ‘parenting’ related cartoon work in August. The piece above, and the companion piece to the left, were for my east coast newspaper client, and had to do with packing, moving, something like that, in relation to kids in some way (getting harder and harder to remember some of these topics, nearly 8 years ago now). The larger one above was one of those fun ones that I like to do, where I can make it real busy and hide a lot of details throughout the illustration.

I also had a few small illustrations for our local regional parenting magazine, one on ‘grandparents’ (right), and another one having to do with ‘baby auditions’ for child actors and models (below left).


I had an assignment for three illustrations this month for a national parenting magazine (I think this one was for the ‘spanish’ version of the magazine), having to do with computers and kids, and software, and other related topics. It is amazing how quickly these ‘computer’ illustrations are already looking a bit dated. I used my G3 as the model for most of my illustrations during this time, and while it looked quite modern and snazzy at the time, it is starting to look a little bulky and retro to my eyes now (can’t wait to see how I was drawing computers back in the 90s).

Maps and More

Carus Publishing, Cobblestone, Gemini Publications, Innovision

Another map assignment from my children’s magazine publisher this month. This one ended up being one of the more time consuming maps I’d yet done for this client, but also ended up being one of my favorites. Another map for the same client is below, but not quite as interesting.

The above illustration was another for the same client, another in a long line of ‘puzzle page’ illustrations for one of their science publications.

Below is a rare full page color assignment for my local regional publication client, I don’t quite remember the topic.

I had another series of illustrations this month for my west coast magazine client. These were usually a single large color illustration for the cover, with accompanying 3 or 4 smaller black and white illustrations on a similar theme. Flowers with ‘apology cards’ this time.

January Cartoon Assignments

Carus Publishing, Consumer Reports, Gemini Publications, Metro Detroit Parent, Newsday, Zillions


One thing I have been amazed to discover as I dig deeper in the archives, is how much of my workload was made up of the ‘cartoon’ style back around this time. These days (around ’08 is when I’m writing this) I work almost exclusively in scratchboard, aside from the occasional exception. One positive aspect of this, is that I’ve gotten much better at the scratchboard than I was in 2000, but I wonder if I’ve lost a bit of the spontenaety and fun that I’d picked up from working so much in a lighter style.

The illustration above was for my east coast newspaper client, an illustration on ‘busy working mothers’. The black and white illustration to the left was part of a larger ‘text heavy’ illustration that I did for my agent this month, for a michigan regional parenting magazine (the rest of the illustration covered a lot of space, and was mostly made up of rather dull hand lettering).
Another hand lettering assignment for the same client is pictured below, and was a bit more interesting, trying to make letters out of various ‘school projects’. I don’t do lettering very often, but this one was kind of fun and challenging.

The tutorial on ‘how to use chopsticks’ pictured to the left was for a children’s publication client this month.

Below are a few more cartoon illustrations for my east coast newspaper client. Most of the ‘cartoon assignments’ were for the ‘ladies lifestyle’ section, as the lighter, less serious style seemed to fit the tone of the articles a little better than the heavy handed dark scratchboard technique.

The ‘woman giving flowers to herself’ illustration was for an article about being single on Valentine’s Day, and consequently, being nice to yourself. Below that, was a larger illustration about safety issues for work at home Moms, with an imaginary inspector pointing out what’s wrong (labelled ‘inspector’ on his helmet in case you missed the point).



Above is a ‘puzzle’ assignment for one of my children’s magazine clients (a kids version of a well known consumer advocate magazine, which unfortunately ceased publication the following year). This puzzle had something to do with twins and finding similar shapes hidden through the room.

To the left and below were a few more black and white assignments for my agent (same client as the other two black and white assignments above), both having to do with valentine’s day presumably.

Mini Cartoons

Consumer Reports, Gemini Publications, Metro Detroit Parent, Oxendine, Zillions


The above ‘puzzle’ illustration was for one of my children’s publications (this one a kids version of a well known consumer advocate magazine). The idea was to find the item in each row that ‘didn’t belong’, and I had an absolute blast coming up with the cover designs for all these cereal boxes. It takes me back to my youth, where I used to spend all my allowance on ‘wacky packages’ and spend hours marveling at the artwork that went into those goofy little trading cards.

A lot of the cartoon work that I had in September was rather small in size. Besides the tiny details that went into the above illustration, I also had a pair of long horizontal black and white cartoons for my agent, for a Michigan regional parenting publication. These would show all sorts of children, of various ages, doing various activities. Measuring approximately 2 inches tall and about 17 inches across, I ended up having to break this file down into 4 sections each in order to post them here.


I also had a series of small ‘factoid’ illustration spots for a southern college lifestyle magazine (pictured above). The illustrations to the left were slightly larger spot cartoons for the same client, two of which had to do with different ‘styles’ of clothing over the years, and the third was some sort of ‘three legged race’ image (other than that, I don’t quite remember the story behind).

What is absolutely amazing to me, is how very long this ‘baggy pants hanging halfway down your legs’ fashion fad has lasted. One would think that kids would have moved on by now, it was old when I drew this back in ’99 and kids are still hobbling around with their pants around their knees ten years later.

Cartoons for August

Gemini Publications, Newsday, Oxendine

(Oddly enough, while transferring this blog from its former home to its current placement in my website’s blog, I happened to notice that this entry has an enormous readership, comparatively. Not sure why, maybe the mention of “wacky packages” in paragraph 2, or the mention of “the x files” near the end). Who know what drives people towards clicking on a google search result?

The illustrations above and below were for an east coast newspaper client and had something to do with how women and men shop differently (if I remember correctly). I mostly remember having a lot of fun putting all sorts of little details and designs on all the packages on the shelves, reliving my ‘wacky packages’ youth once again.


Above is another cartoon for the same client, this one about ‘bad neighbors’. I wasn’t too happy with how this one turned out. I didn’t do such a good job on the perspective of the houses (never my strong suit anyway).

I had another series of small ‘factoid’ spots for a southern college lifestyle magazine (five pictured to the left and below). I also had a couple small spots for a local regional magazine (the ‘angry girl’, the ‘x-files’ illustration, and the ‘tarpaper shack’ illustration below).