Our website redesign and rebuild is currently underway. Now is the time to consider updating our logo to reflect our times and our mission. In order to have our logo truly reflect our membership, we are encouraging interested cartoonists to submit rough concepts for our new logo. We want to be clear this is not a contest for solicited finished work. This is more of a collective brainstorm from our diverse group of creative thinkers. The only guidelines are as follows:
-Submissions can be VERY rough concepts, and can be done as scanned pencil lines or as digital sketches.
-Ideally we'd like to incorporate our evolving mission of free speech.
-We'd like the logo to reflect all types of cartoonists, traditional, digital and animated. We are not making this change because of the 'ink bottle' imagery. An ink bottle can be smartly used in a new logo concept, if it has a current feel.
-Please include at least one version spelling out the full name of our organization: "Association of American Editorial Cartoonists"
-To submit your design concepts (or send any questions), email the Logo Committee by Friday, May 27th: firstname.lastname@example.org
-Please keep the attachments to under 5MB each, and send as many as you wish.
In early June, the AAEC board will narrow down the submissions and work to develop a final design.
The Association of American Editorial Cartoonists condemns the decision of Iowa's Farm News publication to part ways with long-time cartoonist and contributor Rick Friday on the grounds of an unhappy advertiser. This decision is a disservice to journalism and to the people of Fort Dodge, Iowa. This represents a dangerous trend among newspapers where the vitally important wall separating editorial content from advertising is beginning to erode.
The cartoon in question was truthful. Friday displayed courage in speaking out for the less fortunate in the farming industry. The cartoon was a factual statement on the increasing economic disparity of Big Agribusiness and the small farmers of Iowa. He should be thanked for his work, not disgracefully shown the door. For us to maintain a strong freedom of the press, editors and journalists around the country should be beholden to truth and the public good, not the corporate interests of their advertisers. The readers of Farm News deserve far better.
DURHAM, NC — Amid the wave of job losses and high-profile concert cancellations in North Carolina, there is finally some good news for its beleaguered governor and state legislature. One group has decided not to pull its upcoming convention in the wake of the controversial law HB2: Political Cartoonists.
Pat McCrory and the GOP-controlled legislature will be gladdened to hear that the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists is standing firm in their commitment to hold their 2016 Convention and Satire Festival at Duke University in September.
"Other groups and companies are boycotting because that is the only way they can express a political opinion," said Adam Zyglis, the 2015 Pulitzer Prize winner for Editorial Cartooning, and current president of the AAEC. "Expressing an opinion is precisely what we do, so I say we should go to the heart of the controversy and speak out on this issue."
The upcoming confab, scheduled for Sept. 21-24 on the Duke campus, will gather together a hundred political cartoonists from across the United States and Canada to join with nationally-known comedians and satirists for four days of panels, exhibits and public shows.
"Cartoonists and comedians don't shy away from controversy — they embrace it. They run toward it," said festival co-host JP Trostle. "I'm sure Pat McCrory and politicians in Raleigh will be happy to hear we're bringing an entire convention of these people to their doorstep."
Zyglis added, "We will be gathering Association members' work on the HB2 issue, and finding ways to showcase these cartoons to the public. We're also talking with the NC Humanities Council on a joint event discussing the different angles and historical relevance of the recent controversy."
House Bill 2, also known as "the Bathroom Bill," has generated a nationwide backlash against North Carolina, and state-wide protests both for and against the measure. A reaction to a Charlotte city ordinance that would have allowed transgender people to use public restrooms based on their gender identity, the new law is seen by many people as discriminatory against the LGBT community.
It also blocks municipalities across the state from establishing their own anti-discrimination laws or increasing the minimum wage, and strips all workers of their right to sue an employer for discrimination in state courts. HB2 was added to the books after a rare special session of the state legislature, when it was written and signed into law by the governor in less than 12 hours. Legislators were given five minutes to read the bill in its entirety and discuss its merits.
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The Association of American Editorial Cartoonists will hold its 60th annual convention in Durham, North Carolina, from September 21-24, 2016, in conjunction with Duke University.
For more information, please contact Adam Zyglis, The Buffalo News, email@example.com; JP Trostle, firstname.lastname@example.org; Cullum Rogers, Indy Week, email@example.com; or Kevin Kallaugher, The Economist, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joe Szabo, the founder of “WittyWorld” and friend of cartoonists across the globe, died suddenly while working at his desk at home in North Wales, PA, on February 2, two days shy of his 66th birthday.
Joseph George Szabo was born in Budapest, Hungary, graduated from journalism school and married the former Flora Toth before they both emigrated to the United States in 1980 seeking freedom. They settled in North Wales where they raised 5 children in a one-bedroom apartment where the décor was mostly second-hand furniture and lots of books including an entire edition of the Encyclopedia Brittanica.
As his son Sylvo wrote in remembrance , “Joe was a risk-taker” with a “life-long love affair with politics, swimming, ping-pong, chess, dark chocolate, and collecting artifacts from the various countries he’d visited.” Cartoonists will remember him for his ambitious magazine “WittyWorld”, which chronicled cartooning from around the world, and for his many cartoon gatherings. In 1990, he convened a memorable cartoonists’ convention in Hungary just as the iron curtain was falling. Cartoonists from the then USSR, Israel, Ireland, the United States and elsewhere met next to the Danube in Budapest and shared stories about their work and lives.
At the time of his death, he was working on “Images of America”, a book using cartoons to show how people from around the world see the United States. In addition to collecting cartoons, he had been interviewing people for the past 15 years in preparation for his text.
Joe sacrificed personal comforts for his passions, scraping by on odd jobs that fueled his travels and his publications. He was rich with friends, family and fellow cartoonists who mourn his passing.
Memorial contributions can be made to the International Spring Festival, Lansdale Public Library, 301 Vine Street, Landsdale, PA. Remembrances of Joe for his family can be sent to his former wife, Flora Szabo, email@example.com .
The AAEC Board wishes to extend our deepest condolences to our longtime friend and colleague Jeff Danziger upon the loss of his beloved wife Kim Gale on January 26. Kim was a lovely, vivacious, and brilliant companion and we offer our love to Jeff and his and Kim's families.
Dear fellow American cartoonists, satirists, animators and graphic journalists: I’m Bullish on 2016, and you should be too.
Yes, the attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo has in some ways altered the lens in which we view our craft. But in response to this and other assaults on the rights of cartoonists around the globe, we have strengthened our resolve as protectors of free speech. We have and must continue to remind the public of our vital importance to democracy and journalism, especially in light of such atrocities. That’s imperative to our mission and to the future survival of our great profession.
In 2015, we were fortunate to have the leadership of Jack Ohman, who held the reins on fiscal discipline after Matt Wuerker and Mark Fiore continued to right our ship financially. Jack believed in the power of using our voice as an organization for the greater good, and I plan to continue this practice to speak out for the rights of cartoonists. Rest assured that the brilliant Ann Telnaes also believes strongly in these principles, and will further this mission when she assumes the duties of the presidency in 2017. In addition to having the privilege of working beside Jack and Ann (two pillars in our industry), I’m honored to be able to serve all of you this coming year with the help of a high caliber Board: VP Matt Bors, Secretary Monte Wolverton, and Directors Steve Artley, Nate Beeler and Kevin Siers.
Looking forward, the ink bottle is truly half full. We are in the makings of a fantastic partnership with Duke University to celebrate our talents in Durham NC next September 21st- 24th (Bull Durham here we come!). We are lucky to have a dedicated team working to make it happen in Kal, JP Trostle and Cullum Rogers. In addition, we already have our 2017 meeting set for the Big Apple, hosted by Newsday and Matt Davies (you heard that right, a newspaper is actually hosting us).
Another exciting development in the works is the beginnings of a full website redesign and rebranding. Jack Ohman and I have both secured funds dedicated to making this happen. I have found a top rate boutique developer here in Buffalo who will fully bring our organization into the 21st century. The new site will be adaptive to mobile devices and have a slick new look, properly reflecting the professionalism and prestige of our group. The site will enhance both our ability to promote our craft and function as an organization. In coinciding with the redesign, I am announcing a member’s contest to redesign our organization’s logo. While the current logo will remain in the running, an ink bottle doesn’t quite capture the digital nature of much of our work. A new site calls for a new look, and who better to take on the task than a bunch of witty visual artists? More to come on this…
To summarize in the words of Trump: this year’s going to be Huge. I’ve assembled the greatest, most brilliant group of people, who love me, to fix everything. I’m building a firewall and putting all cartoonists in a database. We will have so much winning that you may get bored with it. Believe me. Oh and f*@# Megyn Kelly.
The Association of American Editorial Cartoonists (AAEC) stands in support with Ann Telnaes and her right to call out presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz for politicizing his daughters in a campaign attack ad. While it would be in bad taste to arbitrarily go after a public figure's family, it is fair journalism to criticize the senator for using his own children to attack a political opponent. And that's precisely what Ann's cartoon has done. It does not stray from the time-honored tradition of cartoonists using satire to speak truth to power and protect the powerless – in this case, children.
Cruz ventured into new territory when he had his 7-year-old play an active attack role reading from a script in a campaign ad criticizing political opponents. The media should draw a distinction between this and when elected officials merely use their family in photo ops and positive campaign promotion as has historically been the custom.
Cartoons speak in metaphor, and the monkey image is integral to the age-old organ grinder symbol. Taken in full context, Cruz was clearly the target, but he and his supporters deflected the message by claiming his children were the victims. This is a technique many employ when in the crosshairs of satire, and the media must be careful not to fall for this argument hook, line, and sinker. While the editors at The Washington Post are free to edit how they see fit, in our view it would have been best to defend the cartoon once it had been published. Retracting it risks the appearance of caving to political pressure.
Long-time AAEC members Gary Huck and Mike Konopacki are currently showing their cartoons in an exhibition at Cornell University, where they have come under attack from conservative and liberal critics on campus and off-campus.
Some have complained about the use of certain symbols, such as swastikas and Confederate flags. Others have implied rape imagery. Still others note that the cartoons solely attack the GOP.
Political cartoons employ imagery to make a point. Sometimes the meaning of the imagery is clear, sometime it is more ambiguous. But to willfully project an unintended meaning to a cartoon is offensive to the artist and the free expression of ideas.
In the case of Mr. Huck and Mr. Konopacki, there is absolutely nothing in the use of their imagery that is anything other than within the finest traditions of American editorial cartooning.
Mr. Huck and Mr. Konopacki are owed the full exposition of their work at Cornell, attendees of the exhibition deserve to see all of their work with no censorship, and the AAEC Board urges Cornell to be mindful that a university is a marketplace of ideas, and not a place for censorship or fear.
The AAEC Board of Directors strongly supports Mr. Huck and Mr. Konopacki.
The Association of American Editorial Cartoonists board calls for an independent investigation of the Los Angeles Police Department’s tape of former AAEC president and member Ted Rall's jaywalking stop in 2001. An impartial review of the tape of this incident is badly needed in this case.
Determining the truth in this matter is important to Mr. Rall's personal and professional reputation, and to the rights of journalists to freely express themselves. Furthermore, the Los Angeles Times should have demanded a higher standard of proof in this matter, and it is clear that Mr. Rall is owed a full and complete analysis of the 14 year old tape used to make a judgment about his actions.
Should an independent investigation determine that Mr. Rall’s version of the events is accurate, we call upon the Los Angeles Times to publicly apologize, and make restitution. If it is also determined that the Los Angeles Police Department or a member of the police union manipulated the tape, as Mr. Rall alleges, they also owe Mr. Rall an apology and restitution.