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Tag Archives: Humour

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The Uncomfortable Revolution is ‘the place to have fun with the awkward situations that arise from chronic illness or disability‘. Follow them on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram for the awkward stories people are sharing.

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The Uncomfortable Revolution‘s first book Glossary of Awkward is coming soon to Kickstarter. ‘Written by UR co-founders, Brendan McDonald and Corinne Gray, and featuring original cartoons illustrated by Simon Kneebone, Glossary of Awkward™ is the perfect gift to buy for someone touched by cancer (a whole lot better than flowers). Use it as a conversation-starter, or to connect with someone you’ve been meaning to check in on.’

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Bruce Petty 5-2-15 LR photo

When I started cartooning last century I didn’t know any cartoonists but I did have two books of cartoons – they were my guides. One was a collection of Michael Leunig’s cartoons, the other was of Bruce Petty’s.

Last night Bruce Petty presented the keynote address to the  21st Australasian Humour Studies Network Annual Conference here in Adelaide. It was a real treat. He described – and drew – the last 50 years of cartooning, thought, life, and everything, and how our brains have tried to keep up … and our imagination has been battered in the process. The photo shows Bruce Petty with the drawing he produced showing how the cartoonist fits into it all.

Bruce was a panelist in the earlier session, which discussed humour in relation to the Charlie Hebdo murders. It was a valuable discussion about the role of cartoons and refreshed many questions. Cartoons work because they cross lines, but (for me) do you cross lines because they are there, or because there is something to be said from crossing certain lines? (That is simplifying it a bit too much perhaps). Can you claim selective context in a multicultural and globalised world? And why would you?

The conference information quoted Shakespeare (Love’s labour’s Lost):

A jest’s prosperity lies in the ear /Of him that hears it, never in the tongue /Of him that makes it                                                                                                 

Ah, this strikes a chord. When I have given cartooning classes I have asked kids to think about what they want to happen in their reader’s heads – and then work back. I think it is a good guide.