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Rall bullish on political cartooning industry

Ted Rall, this year’s president of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists, has written a bullish account of why he thinks that most of those in the editorial cartooning business will survive and that the art form will survive.

Just as no two cartooning careers have ever been the same, each of us must find our own way in this brave new world of CPMs and monetization. Some of usâ??a lot more than our hard-wired cynicism would guessâ??will keep staff cartooning jobs. As younger editors-in-waiting who understand and appreciate the impact of graphics begin to take over key positions, new staff cartooning jobs will be created. Others will work full time for websites. Still more will cobble together a living from a mixed assortment of freelance gigs. There may be opportunities in Flash animation. New media will emerge, some of which we will exploit. As Gloria Gaynor saysâ??sortaâ??we will survive! Like roaches.

He gives a few more details on the 2009 annual convention in Seattle that will run July 1-4 over at the AAEC’s web site.

Community Comments

#1 John Auchter
December/9/2008
@ 9:43 am

I have a difficult time agreeing with anybody completely, but I would absolutely go along with Rall’s assessment. I attended the Washington DC AAEC convention in 2007, which was the 50th. The pictures of the first convention — white guys in suits identified by their staff newspaper positions — was certainly contrasted with the increased variation in the cartoonists I met, their work situations, and the ever growing types of cartoons they produce. (Plus life was apparently in black and white in the 1950s, so the addition of color definitely has brightened things up.)

People — young and old — increasingly prefer what editorial cartooning has to offer: pictures and words distilled together to provoke and explain. Perhaps after the Tribunes and Gannetts have gone away, it will be easier for bright business folks to put two and two together and realize there is significant money to be made in a variety of ways with editorial cartooning.

Okay, my only quibble is that I much prefer the CAKE version of “I Will Survive,” but understand that Gloria Gaynor’s is better known.

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