Golly! Cartoonist! Who Knew?
The BBC NEWS Magazine profiles the funny and talented Laura Howell, a contributor to The Beano and creator of Johnny Bean from Happy Bunny Green. (And thoughtful blogger, too.) Lucy Rodgers, the writer of the piece treats her subject as a professional, inquiring into her inspirations as well as the more difficult aspects of the job. Overall, the article is informative and pleasant, a good starting point for anyone interested in cartooning and wondering what the career is like.
But – and you knew there was a but (of course there’s a but, it’s what I live for) – let’s count how many ways the editors at BBC can be condescending.
Work doesn’t have to be a chore.
That’s the first sentence of the editorial blurb introducing the piece. It sets up the impression that drawing comics in fun, always fun, there is no “chore” about it, nothing tedious like ruling panel borders or getting back ache or, say, carpal tunnel syndrome.
Admittedly, I was already primed to hate this piece before I read it — when I clicked the link on the BBC site that read:
Indeed — she must be some kind of mental defective to draw cartoons. All those years of drawing and composition classes, developing a style, learning techniques and tools — why can’t she do something grown-up, like run a Ponzi scheme of hedge funds or use subpar loans as collateral? Slacker.
Props to Rodgers for being a better writer than her idiot editors.
What? You think I’m being a tad sensitive? Rob Tornoe understands.