Door County

The Mrs. and I are just back from a few days in Door County, WI, and I thought I’d share just a few pics:

fish creek

Fish Creek as dusk

fish boil

A fish boil boiling over


View from our B&B balcony


Sailing with the Mrs.

Nice right? Well, back to the old grindstone.

Pre-Order Raconteur #2

Raconteur #2

Hey, just a heads up that Raconteur #2 is available for pre-order at my inky pal Mike Lynch’s blog.

RACONTEUR is a comic book with new autobiographical stories by cartoonists who usually draw those single panel gag cartoons like you see in The New Yorker, Reader’s Digest, Down East Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, etc.

Artist this issue: David Jacobson, John Klossner, Mike Lynch and Jeff Pert.

The first issue sold out fast, so you’ll want to get on this.

And while you’re at it, check out Mike’s drawings from the 2012 Catskills Irish Arts Festival:

Catskills Irish Arts Festival 2012

Inking Cartoons – Video

Video Transcription –

Hello, this is Mark Anderson from and I am going to show you how I ink my cartoons. We are going to do two different cartoons here in about eight minutes. I generally ink pretty quickly – oh there is my big giant hand – but I first, let me, my hand is really big and I work really small, so what I am going to do in this video is draw a little bit, pull my hand back so that you can see what I’ve done and as I move right and down it is going to be easier to actually see the inking as it goes, so just hang in there with me, it’s going to get better and you are going to be able to see more as I draw a little bit more, but I apologize for my big gigantic hand.

So we are doing two cartoons, we have a sales cartoon, you can see the sales graph there in the background and then about halfway through that then we are going to do another cartoon that is a lawyer cartoon with a dog, which is always fun, dog cartoons are fun.

So I start with a pencil sketch, you can – I am working on a light desk on my drafting table, I’ve got a really thin light desk that I like a lot and I am able to move it around fairly well. So what I do is I take the pencil sketch and I tape it to the back of the piece of paper that I am going to be using. I use Borden & Riley bleed-proof paper for pens and the pen I am using is a – in fact I have one right in front of me here – it is a Faber-Castell, Faber-Castell, something like that, Pitt artist brush pen; I really like these, I like the variances in line that I can get and I can work pretty fast – oh that guy is surprised, hello.

So that’s what I use and as I said I work pretty small, this cartoon is probably somewhere between 3 x 5 or 4 x 6. And there I am drawing the conference room table and I realized that I forgot to do the projector – something needs to be projecting that, I was getting – but I didn’t have it in my pencil sketch and rather than stop and go back and sketch it in, I just decided I’ve drawn a lot of these things so I just drew it in right there real quick, its not a big deal, its just a little box. I had toyed with the idea of saying, well it’s an overhead projector in the back that you can’t see, but I thought, no you really need to be able to see the projector putting that up on the screen, so just tossed it in there.

I move pretty fast when I ink, I know other cartoonists will pencil very carefully, I know other cartoonists who don’t pencil at all who just ink until they get it, which is really nice, I can’t do that that’s not how I work. I am using a pen to put in the sales text and that little point on the arrow there at the end, put a little thing. Few things here on the projector and I will use it to write in my signature and my caption. But yeah I really – I feel most comfortable using a sketch and inking off of that, I think the thing to be careful of when you do that is that you don’t worry too much about getting it to look exactly like the sketch, the sketch is an outline and when I am inking, and this is going to sound like an odd combination but it’s sort of a studied carelessness, you want that ink line to really look like you just dashed it off, you just threw it on the page and because – if you go really slow, oops the new cartoon, if you go really slow that line is just going to die right on the page – that’s an earlier ink that I had done that I got like two or three problems right away so I just started over.

So here I am starting on the dog lawyer cartoon. So yeah when I am inking I really try to make sure that it just looks dashed off, I am not really worried about getting all the lines exactly right, I am not – little mistakes, I will even put a little mark on the final art to fix it in Photoshop and I will make a little error and off course that will all get fixed, but even then I only use Photoshop for – if I really like 95% of the drawing and there is one glaring error that I need to fix I will do that, but even little errors I like, I like little things where the line goes too far or well that hand looks more like a squiggle than a hand, I am okay with that because I think that’s, it feels real and authentic and organic and I just like that feel.

So we are about five minutes into the video, we’ve got like two or three minutes left to go, but you can see I am already on the second cartoon, this is a dog at a lawyer and he is talking to the lawyer, the lawyer has his hands folded there. That was the part that sort of tripped me up on the first one, was those lawyer’s hands folded like that, I really wanted him to look like he was sitting back in the chair considering this carefully.

That first cartoon I was talking – the caption on it was – there is a sales graph and the sales graph goes up, down, up and then it goes way down, then you see like three bouncy lines and the caption is something like, ‘wow, I’ve never seen it bounce like that’, the idea that the line picked up so much momentum on the way down that when it hit the bottom of the sale graph that it actually bounced a little bit. This one the wording is trickier, and I don’t ever refer to me so I am trying to read it sideways now as I am watching this.

It is something about, ‘I will take your case, but I need to know everything. Mailman’ – oh what was it, mailman, boy I can’t read that, oh I am so sorry. Mailman, hydrants that’s the other thing and chew toys with a grudge, everything, the idea that if he is going to take this dog’s case that there can’t be any surprises. I thought of this while I was out walking one morning with my coffee and I was thinking about dogs and chew toys and I just really liked the idea that a chew toy would really hold a grudge and that phrase, those couple of words, ‘chew toy with a grudge’ made me, I actually laughed out loud on my walk, it’s like 6:30 in the morning and I walking down the sidewalk with my orange cup of coffee and I am laughing while I am listening to my iPod about this chew toy and I am sure, I guarantee there is someone on the other side of the street looking at me like I am a loon, ‘oh it’s one of those people’, no it is just your friendly neighborhood cartoonist, Mark Anderson,

So we are finishing up here, there are the books in the background to denote the lawyer’s office and that looks pretty good. If I were this lawyer I might take this dog’s case. You know what he looks like he got a bum rap there. That lawyer is missing an ear though, he has no ear and no hair, I think I put that back in. There I am writing in the caption so that I don’t forget it, so. And I don’t want to forget too, please visit, there is thousands and thousands of cartoons on all kinds of topics, including dogs and lawyers and sales graphs and other things, so…

I hope you enjoyed watching me ink and I hope you have learnt something and enjoyed my ramblings. I am hoping you enjoyed them more than the person across the street from me when I was thinking of this. I probably sound more coherent coming from a video like this than across the street shambling along with my coffee. Hup, here comes the ear and the hair, hurray for me.

Alright, have a great day, thanks for watching. Visit and have a good day.