Cartoonist News #216 (May, ’23)

featuring Ted Richards, Nate Neal, Duane Abel, Jenny Campbell, Tony Husband, and Ben Oda.

The Comics Journal has a Ted Richards obituary by John Kelly with a lengthy detour into the Air Pirates cooperative. It is post scripted by a number of remembrances about Ted.

From Gilbert Shelton:

Ted Richards was an outstanding underground cartoonist. We worked together on several projects for Rip Off Press, including Give Me Liberty! A Revised History of the American Revolution and Fat Freddy’s Comics & Stories #1. Ted had a good sense of humor, which can be seen in books like Dopin’ Dan and The Forty Year Old Hippie. We also played together on softball teams, where he starred.

After 13 years AdExchanger cartoonist Nate Neal is moving on. The site thanks Nate with a gallery of cartoons.

As the artist of AdExchanger’s weekly comic for more than 13 years, Nate’s playful style, creativity, humor – and hilariously on-point Easter eggs – were perfectly suited to our droll, sometimes mischievous (but always incisive) approach to covering the news.

Now Nate, the creator of AdExchanger Man and AdExchanger Woman, has hung up his cape to focus on his own projects and other work.

Jon Baker, for The Times Reporter talks to Duane Abel, cartoonist (Zed) turned screenwriter/actor.

In “The Green Oak Guardian,” a Hollywood film company is going to make a movie about a superhero created by a 30-year-old single mom living in Carrollton. She is not happy with the choice of the lead actor for the film, so the actor travels to Carroll County to ingratiate himself with her. Romance ensues.

Abel, a 1998 graduate of Carrollton High School, attended the University of Akron on a full theater scholarship. He is a cartoonist who produces a comic strip called, “Zed,” which he has done for about 28 years. It appears in 50 weekly newspapers across the country.

Ideastream’s Kabir Bhatia reports on Jenny Campbell (Flo & Friends) riding to the Rescue Village.

After more than two decades of pen-and-ink drawings – and many rescue dogs and cats – she met Kenneth Clarke, who joined Rescue Village in Russell Township as executive director in 2021 … Clarke soon came across two decades’ worth of Campbell’s work for Rescue Village, and he said he realized a book would be perfect for Northeast Ohio animal lovers. There was just one problem: with a few exceptions, none of the drawings had captions.

“Jenny got her homework, and she had to go and take this big pile and try to be funny with things that she’s created before ‘Flo & Friends,’” he said. “It must have been a little bit of an archaeological dig to go back and then be funny about stuff you did a long time ago.”

Campbell admits that in many cases, she couldn’t recall why she’d drawn the pencil-and-ink images, which range from saxophone-playing dogs to cats touting animal microchipping.

Neal Keeling, for The Manchester (England) Evening News profiles and interviews Tony Husband (“The world renowned cartoonist from Hyde who has never missed being in Private Eye for 38 years”) as exhibit opens.

Tony is known for his ability to capture the absurdities and ironies of everyday life with his distinctive style. Characterised by their wit, warmth, and whimsy, Tony’s cartoons can make you smile, laugh out loud, or reduce you to tears.

He believes that in current society cartoonists are needed more than ever, with their gift for a gag, and ability to capture starkly the corruption and cruelty of the world. One cartoon came from him being moved by the migrant channel crossings. He said he imagined one of his granddaughter’s on a raft in the middle of the Channel as a storm was brewing saying “Are we there yet”. Tony said: “When I drew it I cried. We can’t keep watching children being drowned.”

Todd Klein continues his profiling of letterers with the excellent and prolific comic book and comic strip Ben Oda.

In the mid 1950s, Ben moved into another area of comics lettering, newspaper strips, where he soon had lots of work. This example is the earliest I’ve found, there could certainly be earlier ones. Note the right-leaning C’s in some places. In the 1980 profile at DC Comics, Ben listed these strips as ones he’d worked on: Rip KirbyPrince ValiantFlash GordonDondiOn StageQuincyGil ThorpeDr. KildareThe PhantomSteve CanyonKerry DrakeSecret Agent X-9The DropoutsTerry and the Pirates, and Tarzan.