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Stuart Carlson – RIP

Editorial Cartoonist Stuart Carlson has passed away.


Stuart Scott Carlson
September 1955 – June 10, 2022

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel is reporting Stuart’s death:

Stuart Carlson, the former Milwaukee Journal Sentinel political cartoonist, died Friday at age 66.

Carlson, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease about seven years ago, was hospitalized over the Memorial Day weekend with a sudden illness.

He returned home for a day before he was hospitalized again.

Carlson, who was the cartoonist for the Milwaukee Sentinel and the Journal Sentinel from 1983 to 2008, was remembered for his incisive, humorous commentary on current events.

Yahoo carries The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel obituary.

Stuart was born in Iowa and raised in Wisconsin, where he lived his life.

 

Wikipedia tells of Stuart before his 25 years on The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:

Carlson was raised in West Bend, Wisconsin and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1978 at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee. After graduating, Carlson worked as a cartoonist for the West Allis Post/Star and as a reporter for the West Bend News.

In 2014 Urban Milwaukee talked to Stuart:

Stuart Carlson has a great sense of humor, something you’d expect from a professional cartoonist, but he could be forgiven for having a more downtrodden attitude considering he was one of casualties of the Journal Sentinel’s Great Purge of 2008.

So, why were political cartoonists the first to walk the plank?

“It’s not like they were going to cut back on their coverage of the Packers,” Carlson says, laughing. “And all a political cartoonist does is piss people off. I wasn’t coming from a conservative, right-wing perspective and I think that’s the demographic a lot of papers want to appeal to because that’s where the readership is growing.”

 

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has a page of Carlson cartoons in memory.

Stuart’s editorial cartoons were syndicated by Universal Press/Andrews McMeel Syndication and there is a 25 year archive at their Stuart Carlson page. The last cartoon is dated May 31, 2022.

 

addenda: 

Bruce Murphy, at Milwaukee Magazine, remembers Stuart Carlson:

In 2008, when he was let go by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel after 25 years with the paper and one of its two forerunners, the Milwaukee Sentinel, he told Milwaukee Magazine’s “Pressroom” columnist Erik Gunn how it happened:

“I voluntarily took the buyout, but voluntarily as when somebody puts a gun to your head and says ‘Hand over your wallet,’” he said.

I was the magazine’s editor then and asked Carlson if he wanted to do a cartoon to illustrate our column about his departure and he did a great one, of an earnest unsuspecting editorial cartoonist being harpooned by a giant Number 2 pencil.

 

As mentioned in that Urban Milwaukee article Stuart teamed with Jerry Resler to create the Gray Matters comic strip, which they self-syndicated to a few Wisconsin newspapers.

Former Journal Sentinel editorial writer Jerry Resler, who was also Carlson’s close friend, praised his humorous and smart approach to the tough issues of the day.

“He was not only exceptionally talented as a cartoonist, but one of the kindest men I ever met,” Resler said. “You couldn’t not like him, he was such a good guy.”

Also was Beanie the Brownie, a Christmas comic strip by Stuart and his wife Mary.

 

            

Community Comments

Currently there are 3 Comments
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#1 Loran John Skinkis
June/13/2022
@ 10:10 am

I’ve enjoyed Stuarts’ work for many years.
Sad to hear he passed.

#2 Mike Szczawinski
June/13/2022
@ 6:01 pm

Such a wonderful talent for images that represented many thoughts and words. Could we say a sly wit at times. Milwaukee (and the world) was so fortunate to have his editorials. Rest In Peace, Stuart.

#3 John Glynn
June/13/2022
@ 7:30 pm

RIP, Stu. A helluva guy and cartoonist.

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