Wednesday, August 26, 2009

R.I.P. Ted Kennedy: Two Moldy Oldies from New York Press

At the risk of seeing this blog lurch even further in the direction of "Which Dead Celebrity Caricature Can I Post This Week?", here's a couple of old Ted Kennedy illos from the heyday of New York Press.

I was a regular contributor to NYPress from the early 1990's through the mid-2000's. My drawings often accompanied columns by Alexander Cockburn, John Strausbaugh and J.R. Taylor, but for the entirety of 1999, I provided the art for NYPress Publisher Russ Smith's notoriously Right-leaning MUGGER column.

Typically, these MUGGER illos started off with Smith phoning me on a Friday to describe whatever concept he had in mind. In one or two instances, I may have massaged Smith's concepts slightly, but generally I drew exactly what he asked for. There were dozens of illos slagging the Clintons, Al Gore, & other Democrats, while others were aimed at NYC media figures like Tina Brown, Kurt Andersen, etc.

Here's a MUGGER illo from May 1999, showing a tuxedo-clad Ted Kennedy handing the "Profiles In Courage" award to John McCain, (dressed as an extra from one of the "Rambo" films). Revisiting this one, I cringe just a bit at my McCain likeness, (my McCains would improve over the subsequent decade), but I like to think the Ted Kennedy likeness still holds up.

Next we have a cover illo for New York Press from April 2001. This was an especially fun one for me, because I got to switch into horror movie mode, (always a happy place for me). Here we see mad scientist Ted Kennedy unleashing a new generation of toothy Kennedy offspring upon the political scene, while the ghostly head of JFK looks on approvingly. Art direction by my pal, longtime NYPress art baron Michael Gentile, of course.

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Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Four Obamas

Whew. Historically, when I've given money to a campaign, it meant that they'd either lose or drop out, (Dean, Kerry & Edwards). What a pleasure to see things done right for a change!

Here are four Obama illos from the campaign, in chronological order. The first was drawn in September 2007 for Aaron Huffman at The Stranger.

The drawing of a monitor bursting with candidates was for John Elsasser at PRSA's The Strategist in January 2008. A note about this illo: originally, this drawing had Law & Order's Fred Thompson at the top of the group, but just as I was turning in the final art, Thompson dropped out, and Mike Huckabee was on the rise. I did a quick revise, patching in Huckabee's head over Thompson's.

The drawing of Obama painting himself into a corner was a cover illo for C&E Politics, drawn in June 2008 for Jeff Brown. The original concept had Obama and Hillary Clinton engaged in a squabble over who'd slung the most mud. I thought this was a stronger concept, but for whatever reason, the folks at C&E Politics opted for a solo Obama.

Finally, at the close of a Summer laden with cinematic superhero blockbusters, we have Obama and McCain clad in brightly-colored spandex. This was a cover illo for Creative Loafing Tampa, drawn for Jason Hatcher in September 2008. This drawing was a real treat; not only did I get to draw the candidates, but I got to have a crack at few iconic superheroes, which is always fun.

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