This one I rushed to the blog because I had company coming. Unfortunately, when I looked at it again later I didn't like the artwork in spots. I made a few corrections and replaced the old one with this improved final version. That kind of thing can happen a lot when you don't live with a drawing at least for a day. You become a little blind to its problems unless you get away from it for awhile. One trick I use to help me counter that phenomena is to turn a drawing over and look at it from the other side in the light. It's as if you are looking at it for the first time and the errors will usually pop out. In photoshop I just transform the image horizontally to see if there are any mistakes. Obviously I didn't take the time to do that with the above drawing. So that's the quick solution to find drawing errors, but there is no quick solution for a weak gag. That's why I've always said that with gag cartoons, the drawing is the easy part.
Sunday, August 29, 2010
This one came to me last week when I was on a lunch break, because I often bring my post-it notes along and rough out ideas while I eat. It can be especially rewarding when I'm eating with a friend who also shares a comical perspective on life, although anyone listening in to two cartoonists developing a joke might wonder what is so darn funny, since it can be quite random and ridiculous to hear.
I spent about 2 hours today cleaning up the line drawing and then putting some quick shading and color to it in photoshop. I've been trying to post a gag a day, which has proved to be quite a challenge when I work all day in the animation studio. I'm starting to think that If I can come close to pulling off a gag a day, with a full time job, then syndication is not so daunting an idea after all, since that would be just one job to worry about. -Ted Blackman
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Here's another older gag that has been sitting around unresolved. I was talking to a friend recently about how funny it is to wrack your brain when trying to remember a name, and only after you completely give up and focus on something else does it suddenly pop into your head. Gag cartooning can be a lot like that. Sometimes when I pull one out of the loser box and look at it with a fresh perspective months or even years later, it can hit me right away what caption or clarification it needs. Sometimes it needs very little, as in this case. I wish all my unresolved cartoon ideas (what I call 50 percenters) were that easily worked out. Even the title of this one hit me tonight unexpectedly as I was working on it, and I immediately laughed out loud, which is the only true yardstick I have before actually running one of these up the flagpole for all of you to give the final verdict. -Ted Blackman
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Friday, August 20, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Sunday, August 15, 2010
I was digging around in my cartoon vault and found this old gem, so I updated it a bit with some color. I believe it was a gag I drew for the 91X radio station out of San Diego, when they were publishing my cartoons in their newsletter back in the eighties.
As for the luxury of TV remotes, I never even heard of one when I was a kid. We just sat next to the set absorbing harmful radiation, and flipped back and forth between the shows that happened to be in the same time slot. There was no way to record them, and if we missed anything we pretty much figured we'd never see it again. Nowadays, if you misplace your remote, you can't even operate your television. One night I lost it for almost an hour, and tore the place apart till I found it again. It was in the freezer, and the ice cream was on top the TV.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Friday, August 6, 2010
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Here's one I dug out of the cartoon vault. It was a silly gag back then that never really worked and because of my own inexperience I wasn't sure why, but when I pulled it out of the folder a couple days ago and looked at it again, I immediately knew what it needed.
By re-drawing the prospector on the left and giving him a set-up caption, it works much better now, avoiding the lapse in time it took previously to process the information. There has to be some processing to get the viewer involved, but too much and you lose the momentum of the gag. Whether it's a success or not, at least it flows now, and I'm happy, because I always loved the old guy who was having such a bad day. -Ted Blackman