The celebration of the life of Roy Peterson will be held Friday Oct 11th from 2-4 at Hollyburn Country Club in West Vancouver.
Remembrances from Colleagues
From Dwane Powell, Creators Syndicate
Retired from the News and Observer, Raleigh, NC
My first American Association of Editorial Cartoonists meeting was in Washington DC in 1972. I was drawing for a small newspaper in Arkansas, my first newspaper job, and had never met another cartoonist outside Arkansas. We were asked to send a cartoon for exhibition at the meeting so I rounded one up and sent it in.
Being self taught and having never seen the original drawings of more established cartoonists I was humbled to see these works up close at the DC exhibit. One drawing in particular caught my eye, a large, beautifully rendered cross hatch drawing that hung dead center in the room. It was the ass end of an Elephant with a tiny Pierre Trudeau hanging from the tail. Then I noticed that my cartoon was hung right next to it.
Just as I was about to slink out of the room a dapper fellow came up beside me, pointed at my cartoon, and in a deep, mellifluous voice, said, "That's a very nice cartoon." I said "Thanks" and asked which one was his, and he pointed at the cross hatched elephant ass.
Soon afterward, a rube from Arkansas was having a gin and tonic with Canada's greatest cartoonist. That was Roy Peterson.
From Bruce MacKinnon:·What should Canadians know about Roy Peterson?
He was the editorial cartoonist for the Vancouver Sun for nearly half a century, but may have been best known across the country for illustrating Allan Fotheringham's column on the last page of Maclean's Magazine for decades. He's won more National Newspaper Awards and other accolades than any other cartoonist in history, and was one of only two cartoonists to be president of both the Canadian (ACEC) and the American Editorial Cartooning Associations (AAEC). He was member of the order of Canada and a giant in the field of editorial cartooning.
·What did Roy Peterson mean to you?
Roy was a hero and mentor to me. He was not just a role mode and inspiration as a brilliant cartoonist, but he was a role model as a human being. He was always warm and approachable, always encouraging friendly and kind to any young cartoonist who came to him for advice, and was universally loved and respected by his peers. He was always want I wanted to be when I grow up. I'm still waiting.
Was he an influence on your work?
Huge. I had all his books and learned so much from the masterpieces he drew, but his work was at such an incredibly high level he couldn't really be imitated. In terms of illustration and design, what he did within the space he was given to draw was simply unequalled anywhere in the world.
·What did Roy Peterson contribute to Canadian culture and cartooning?
He drew political cartoons that had such impact, at such a high skill level, that they will be forever remembered both nationally and internationally. He set the high water mark for illustration, design, caricature, kindness, class, and humility.
·Do you have a Roy Peterson anecdote you’d like to share?
After his beloved wife Margaret died, whenever we could convince him to come to a convention, he would spend any unscheduled time holing up with us in the hotel room. By 'us' I mean Bob Krieger (a close friend and a fellow Vancouver cartoonist whom he mentored from the start), Dwane Powell, Mike Keefe and Tim Menees, American cartoonists who had become longtime friends, and myself. We were all musicians/guitarists so we'd sit around playing tunes for Roy, absolutely thrilled and honoured to be the apparent muses and court jesters for this living legend.
One particular night, Roy had a request. He said can you something by that guy from Texas? You know... that guy with the high hair? He kept trying to explain but we couldn't figure it out. Finally, he grabbed the little notepad of hotel paper and a ball point and scribbled something in about 25 seconds. He held it up to us and in unison we all hollered "Lyle Lovett!!" It was brilliant. It was a quick sketch but at the same time the most accurate of caricatures in the slickest style. Not just any cartoonist can do that. Krieger immediately pounced on it and made him sign it. The tiny 3"x4" sketch now hangs matted in a HUGE frame on the living room wall in Bob's Vancouver home.
·Anything else you’d like to say about Roy?
Many of us feel like we've lost a father figure. I'm just so proud to have called him my friend.