There are few goads to action like seeing someone do very well at an activity you’ve let drop. I’ve been inspired by a friend and accomplished cartoonist, Sarah Leavitt (plug: she sells a hilarious collection of fridge magnets), to break out the sketch pad and markers again.
I’ve cartooned since about Grade 8. My high school physics teacher, Larry Kry, gave me my first serious pen (a Koh-i-noor technical pen, responsible for my ink-stained appearance for most of my time at Gloucester High) and enough encouragement to keep me going for years. Enter my university years, and some of my cartoons got into student newspapers and the occasional activist leaflet. (Plus a drawing of a beaver eating a missile that got a lot of play at Operation Dismantle. I wish I had a few of those stickers left.) And while I was working on Parliament Hill, a number of cartoons found their way into various MPs’ mailings and constituency reports.
In recent years, though, my pen has gone dry. (No need to read some sexual innuendo into that, thank you very much.) Apart from some sporadic doodles from time to time â€“ the sort of thing you do to survive a long meeting, for instance â€“ my sketch book has stayed closed.
But just a brief conversation with Sarah on Friday was enough to spur me to open it again. So, over the next while, you’ll start seeing the results, such as they are. (Plus a brand new category for the blog… way to work out WordPress’s AJAX features, Sarah!)
Here’s the first rough doodle.