Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Gordon Brown goes to the circus - Hack cartoon

When bread gets expensive, any leader will find themselves in a fight.

Hack cartoons

Monday, April 28, 2008

Content licences are a timewarped problem

Regrettably, my Hack cartoons Northern Rocky animated political cartoon for Channel 4 has run into some legal issues. Click the picture to see more.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

The really good ones are indefinable - Barry Cryer on Humphrey Littleton

Here is a clip of writer Barry Cryer talking about the late Humphrey Littleton. If you hadn't noticed previously, Mr Littleton was a cartoonist among his many other talents. He also used to work and play in a band with Wally Fawkes (Trog) who, to those in the know, is one of the country's finest artists since the last world war. Clip from Channel 4.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Friday, April 25, 2008

Hack cartoons on public sector strikes

I heard the phrase 'summer of discontent' on the radio this morning...

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Bad logo-a most unfortunate cock up

The Office of Government Commerce (OGC) logo has made it to the pages of the Daily Telegraph. So far, so what? I admired the spinning skills of the unnamed spokesperson who sought to justify the unfortunate cock up.

A spokesman for OGC said: “It is true that it caused a few titters among some staff when viewed on its side, but on consideration we concluded that the effect was generic to the particular combination of the letters OGC - and it is not inappropriate to an organisation that’s looking to have a firm grip on Government spend.”

There's talent in there somewhere. And a hat-tip to Mark Crail.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Channel 4 News animated political cartoon - Gordon Brown and Alastair Darling

Click the picture for the Playing with money animated political cartoon or, just go straight to Channel 4 News.
UPDATED: There is a thorough Channel 4 Factcheck on the ins and outs of the debate here and what Mr Brown may, or may not, have done and then claimed.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Bad logo

Marvellous stuff from the Office of Government Commerce (via the observant Bloggerheads.) The original stuff comes from The Register; read the full gory story of design gone bad here.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Hack cartoons caricature of Barack Obama

Hack Cartoons sketchbook caricature of the Senator from Illinois and candidate for the Democratic party nomination as President of the USA, Barack Hussein Obama, Jr.
UPDATE: He's also finding it is hard work being a front runner in any contest.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

The Y-fronted cartoonist at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival

In this picture, I am precisely three-quarters of the way through the large drawing about drawing at the Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival. I should stress at this point, no hat was used in the manufacture of this cartoon (see blogs previous), but several pairs of Y fronts did make an unwilling debut.)

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Monday, April 21, 2008

The semi-naked cartoonist at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival

In this photograph I am precisely halfway through a large drawing about drawing at the Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The performing cartoonist at Shrewsbury Cartoon Festival

Hack cartoons is performing in public this weekend at the Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Channel 4 News animated political cartoon - Gordon Brown in America

Prime Minister Gordon Brown is on a visit to America. Click the picture to watch an animated political cartoon about this, or go here to Channel 4 News.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Hack cartoons Gordon Brown caricature

Hack cartoons cartoon caricature of UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown on the occasion of his visit to the United States.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

You call it thinking, I call it work

A cartoonist tries to think.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Monday, April 14, 2008

What sub-prime mortgages mean

Via Charles Arthur and the BBC
All together now, we’re doomed, doomed they tell you. Anyone want to take odds on a sudden conversion to joining the eurozone?

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Channel 4 News animated political cartoon - the credit crunch

Animated political cartoon published at Channel 4 News, or click the picture. The news site has a handy short guide about why the fact that banks no longer trust one another enough to lend money to each other matters. And what this may mean for the rest of us.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Saturday, April 05, 2008

A cartoonist writes

Why blog when you can draw?

At first I did the writing thing - in words - because it was somewhere I got to control how what I said was displayed. As a creative person who tends to think in pictures rather than in words - this was important because I don't feel completely confident with letters and words. Letters in code and combination are pesky and elusive things which explains I think why politicians and lawyers love them so.

The blog also has the fringe benefit of being a nice way to advertise my wares without having to use a middleman.

Hack Cartoons Vitruvian Pig - or, the proportions of the artist
This seems to have become more important because of some real world changes to the business world in which I work. This is, or was, print journalism. This industry is going through a period of massive change, or steep decline and death (depending upon who you speak to:-/ Anyone living through one of these periods will tell you how challenging these times can be. Just ask journalists at one of my old papers - The Daily Express.

The economy of Britain supports under a 1,000 professional cartoonists at my best guesstimate. These are resourceful creatures who manage to feed and clothe themselves and their families entirely through their skill at drawing and writing. This number will, in all probability, decline in line with the print industry, if decline it is to be.

The difficulties of the task facing contemporary British-based print cartoonists can be contrasted by the story of Ronald Searle, arguably one of the greatest artists this country has ever produced. A man so pestered in our culture for his advertising work and the successful characters he invented at St Trinians school, that he eventually felt the need to move to France permanently, where he still lives and works aged 88. Nowadays he has a non-pigeonholed freedom to draw about what he pleases, mainly for Le Monde newspaper.

No one can stop economic changes I am noting when they are driven by financial forces far beyond the resistance of any one individual. All we can do as professional image makers is to adapt and make sure we are as visible as we can be.

Some of my colleagues and I have been busy setting up something called The Professional Cartoonists’ Organisation - which is, in advert-speak, exactly what it says on the tin. I like to daydream that Searle might approve.

At present, I edit its diary called the Bloghorn along with Royston Robertson who is busy making a name for himself as a gag cartoonist of note. Our members include many of Britain's finest cartoon talents, (here follows name-droppping) we can boast Ken Pyne, Pete Dredge and Martin Honeysett (all regulars from Private Eye), sages like John Jensen (who's forgotten more about how to communicate in words and pictures than most of us will ever know) and top editorial names like Martin Rowson, Morten Morland, Andy Davey and Dave Gaskill. There are many more cartoonists and artists (too many to list here) and I advise a visit if you have the leisure time, or are in need of a good professional piece of visual communication and the distinct and unusual skills which allows them to be made.

The Bloghorn

Many of us will be performing our tricks at the forthcoming Shrewsbury International Cartoon Festival (April 18-20th) - much has been written about it on Bloghorn, if you can get there, come down and see what all this fuss is about.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Friday, April 04, 2008

Channel 4 News animated political cartoon - the immigration debate

The Lords issued a report on the economic effect of immigration into the UK this week. Click the picture for the animated cartoon or go here to Channel 4 News.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Thursday, April 03, 2008

This is statporn

The Devil's Kitchen: Some opinionated bloggers like to boast about the size of their web statistics. And Devil's Kitchen has been hosting a marvellously profane and foul row between some big name Brit bloggers all about this. It's really quite entertaining in between all the jargon. To me, the stupidity of statporn and the endless human mania for measuring absolutely everything conjure up so many compelling images. Obviously, I ought to add here that I watch statporn too. The trick is not feeling one has to publish it to justify a place in any conversation. But in turn, this nice theory has a problem because when you are attempting to make a profit-generating business out of it, people will ask you difficult questions about your statporn.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Web publication will start to have to grow up

£100,000 of damages for defamation and libel as reported by The Guardian.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Nick Clegg superstud

A nice joke from Jonathan Calder about the new'ish leader of the Lib Dems.

Note the brilliance of our party's press operation: they arrange for news of Nick's embarrassing GQ interview to leak out on 1 April so that everyone will assume it is a spoof.

I got there via Paul Linford who's own jokes are funnier than he thinks they are. I note Mr Clegg's GQ interview only because my own joke about tales of the shagger fell by the wayside this week - but I did end up doing something equally wholesome.

Liberal England: Nick Clegg superstud

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Channel 4 News animated political cartoon - the immigration debate

Coming soon.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Hack cartoons sketchbook - Robert Mugabe

Who is our latest despot exactly? Some basic research reveals in the course of his 84 years,he has been; the child of a single parent, a scholar, a teacher, an activist, a political prisoner, a terrorist (or a freedom fighter) let's compromise and call him a warrior at all events, a widower, a peacemaker (at times) and finally, a successful politician and president of his country. His story is in very large part, the story of his country; he has been its one and only elected president. Modern Zimbabwe, or Southern Rhodesia as it used to be called, was stapled together as a nation from two largely unrelated halves, or ethnic groups, (Ndebele and Shona) by Britain way back at the end of the 19th century. It has endured wars, revolts and uprisings an a period of white dominated minority rule (and an insurgency) under the government of Ian Smith. Mugabe has lived all of this - and it has helped make him, good and bad. It is certainly a tragedy that Mugabe seems to have become a despot but the stories you see now won't make sense unless you look backwards too and search for the context which gives he and his actions, meaning. And let's face it, show me a Democrat who hasn't fiddled an election. Starving a country is a much more serious charge - link to Channel 4 News.

Matt Buck’s animated drawings

Tuesday, April 01, 2008