From The Chicago Sun-Times, January 1, 2019, “‘People come into focus’ — New Yorker Sophistication Crafted at Chicago Landmark” — this piece on New Yorker illustrator, Tom Bachtell.
If you’re in Chicago go see this exhibit of Tom Bachtell‘s work. Mr. Bachtell’s terrific drawings have appeared in The New Yorker for over two decades. Link here to the Adventureland Gallery for more info.
Back to a single issue, but not for long. Just one more single week issue before we have another double: dated August 6 & 13. Ah summertime.
This is the first issue of The New Yorker in 23 years without Tom Bachtell’s Talk of The Town illustrations. The illustrations are handled this week by Joao Fazenda. His work, at least going by the illustrations in this issue, seem in the vicinity of the school of Bachtell. Otto Soglow’s terrific drawings remain, as they have for quite some time, sort of alternating between the modern contributor’s work.
From the Dept. of Just Sayin’ :
18 illustrations this week. Three of those full page, and an additional illustration that is a page-and-a-half.
14 cartoons, none full page.
Good sizing/placement of the cartoons this week, with just one drawing that, to my eyes, could’ve used a bit more breathing room (i.e., run larger): Ed Steed’s very nice bees in cars cartoon. Perhaps it reads better in the print version (I’m seeing the digital issue, both on a laptop and a tablet).
Of note in the issue: a Glen Baxter drawing! Even better: it’s a Glen Baxter cowboy drawing! If the Spill gave out best of the issue awards like the fellas do over on Cartoon Companion, Mr. Baxter’s would be pinned with a ribbon.
Irvin Talk Update:
Rea Irvin’s iconic masthead for The Talk of The Town is still missing (a re-drawn version replaced it. Yes, a re-drawn version. Read about that here). This is what the original looks like:
And that’s that, til next week.
New Yorker’s Tom Bachtell Talk of The Town Illustrations End After 23 Years
Mr. Bachtell, whose first Talk of The Town illustrations appeared in the New Yorker‘s issue of March 20, 1995, posted the following on Facebook this afternoon:
Article of Interest: Maggie Larson
From the Philadelphia Inquirer, July 11, 2018, “This Bryn Mawr grad is part of an exclusive — but growing — group: women cartoonists of the New Yorker”
— this piece on Ms. Larson, who first began contributing to The New Yorker in July of 2017.
Above: Ms. Larson and one of her New Yorker cartoons (from the issue of December 4 2017).
“How many do you send in?”
I’ve found that this question is eventually asked in any cartoon-centered conversation with someone curious as to how it works, working for The New Yorker. It’s a question with as many different answers as there are cartoonists. A rumor was spread some years ago that the magic number was 10: you had to submit 10 a week. No such rule exists, or ever existed. I believe that that number still haunts the cartoon community — why, I don’t know.
This afternoon, while going through cartoon stuff, I ran across a box of index cards from my earliest years as a cartoonist for the magazine. To illustrate my point about sending in 10 cartoons a week, I noticed I had a run of sending in 20+, but there were also weeks of 30+, and then I found a few much higher. Here’s a cropped photo of the last page of one week’s submissions — the week of March 8, 1978:
57 submitted. Not one sold to The New Yorker or to any other publications that saw the work after the New Yorker (I think those red dots indicate drawings I felt might work for some other magazines). I don’t remember any of these cartoons, but judging by the captions, I’m not surprised they failed to be placed. For me, rejected work is best quickly forgotten; by the time drawings are rejected (or bought, if I’m lucky enough) I’ve already moved on to the next week’s batch, however many drawings that turns out to be.
The Fiction/Childhood Issue? Well that’s what it says, in red and black on the Table of Contents:
First, the paperwork:
See that beautiful masthead just above? It was drawn and designed by Rea Irvin. It’s been missing since Spring of last year after appearing in the New Yorker for 92 years. It was replaced last year by a redrawn version (redrawn by Christoph Niemann). Here’s hoping that one day Mr. Irvin’s work will be returned and replace the replacement. If you wish to read more on the original and the replacement and see their elements compared side-by-side, link here.
From the Dept. of Just Sayin’
There are 22 Illustrations in this week’s issue (that includes photographs, but does not include Tom Bachtell’s wonderful drawings appearing in the Talk of The Town, nor does it include the Spot drawings appearing throughout the issue). 6 of the illustrations are full page. There are 14 cartoons (none full page).
And now to the issue’s cartoons. Here are the cartoonists whose work appears this week:
As is becoming customary, I’m going to mention just a few cartoons instead of looking at each in the issue. The first, by Robert Leighton, is a particular favorite. I won’t show it, but you can see it here among all the others just published (just scroll down to the heading “Cartoons from the Issue”). Mr. Leighton, whose classic Escher drawing was profiled here awhile back, has given us a charming and delightful drawing somewhat reminiscent of Frank Modell‘s work with a bit of Nurit Karlin tossed in (I’d link you to Ms. Karlin’s fabulous work, but sad to say that the New Yorker‘s Cartoon Bank site does not seem to have archived it).
Mr. Leighton’s drawing deserves a hearty round of applause.
It was just last week that a co-credited drawing (Kaamran Hafeez and Al Batt) was mentioned here as being somewhat rare, and now the very next week is another co-credited cartoon. This time it’s a drawing by Hilary Fitzgerald Campbell and Ellis Rosen. Suddenly co-credits are not so rare.
As usual, for those who want a critical take on all the cartoons, I’m pointing you to Cartoon Companion. The site usually posts on Thursdays or Fridays.
Note: The Monday Tilley Watch will return in two weeks as this current issue is a double.