Earlier this year I put in my long-overdue application to become a member of the National Cartoonists Society and I’m happy to report that I’ve been accepted into their illustrious ranks!
Past and present members include Charles Schulz, Walt Kelly, Hank Ketcham, Jeff Smith, Patrick McDonnell, and Bill Watterson – to name just a very few. How I snuck in I don’t know, but they gave me a laminated card and everything so it must be official!
What is the National Cartoonists Society? Well, according to the NCS website…
The National Cartoonists Society is the world’s largest and most prestigious organization of professional cartoonists. It was born in 1946 when groups of cartoonists got together to entertain the troops. They found that they enjoyed each other’s company and decided to get together on a regular basis.
Today, the NCS membership roster includes over 500 of the world’s major cartoonists, working in many branches of the profession, including newspaper comic strips and panels, comic books, editorial cartoons, animation, gag cartoons, greeting cards, advertising, magazine and book illustration and more.
Each year members gather for a long weekend of events that culminates with the Reuben Awards ceremony which are given for outstanding cartooning in strips, comic books, illustration and other categories, along with the big award for Cartoonist of the Year; this year’s nominees are Willey (Non Sequitur) Miller, Stephan (Pearls Before Swine) Pastis, Hilary (Rhymes With Orange) Price, and Mark (Lio) Tatulli. Each is a well-deserved nomination – good luck to them all!
If you want to learn more about the NCS then I recommend their brand new website which as got lots of great information. For more about cartooning, then I highly recommend the newly released documentary STRIPPED, which features a gaggle of cartoonists talking about the industry they love and how it’s evolved over the last century. Check out the trailer below…