Friday, June 15, 2012

Merkel, futbol

In glaring contrast to last week's delightful single character illustration for ForexPros, this week's illustration was an epic, 6-character, 15-hour marathon drawing binge. It depicts Angela Merkel's attempts at dealing with the growing financial situation in the Eurozone, particularly with regards to the more financially-troubled countries derisively known as the "PIGS" (Portugal, Ireland, Italy, Greece, and Spain). When I was drawing political cartoons regularly (at one point as many as four or five per week), I worked without an awareness of the benefits to my technical proficiency. Turning out four cartoons per week will get you good in a hurry (well, good at the drawing side of it anyway; it won't necessarily do anything for one's political acumen). So, in spite of the unpleasantness of that volume of work, there were tangible benefits. It was also nice that I had deadlines. These deadlines kept me from being too finicky about the illustrations. Once they were turned in, they were done. End of story. No editing possible. And so it was with this one, which I won't pretend was a lot of laughs (but I figure I'm improving without knowing it). This many characters and this amount of detail meant that, unlike the Bernanke piece last week, I just didn't have the time to bring each character up to my standards. But that's just the way it is when there's a deadline. I used to call the critique I do of an illustration after it's been turned in "the Post Mortem" because, again, when it's done it's done. In theory, the obligation to meet a very fast deadline should make me a little more relaxed. After all, there's only so much I can do in a short period of time, so why worry about it? In theory, I should acknowledge what I like about an illustration, recognize what I didn't and rectify it next time, and then not think too much about the rest. In theory. Cheers.

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