The Naked Cartoonist: A New Way to Enhance Your Creativity

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Only people like that buy books like this...or write them."

So says Robert Mankoff—and he should know. As cartoon editor of The New Yorker, and one of its most gifted contributors, he spends his life pursuing that elusive thing called creativity, and inspring it in others. If you've ever wondered where great ideas come from, or yearned to channel your creative energies, or just wanted some pointers on how to get those artisitic juices ...

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Overview


Only people like that buy books like this...or write them."

So says Robert Mankoff—and he should know. As cartoon editor of The New Yorker, and one of its most gifted contributors, he spends his life pursuing that elusive thing called creativity, and inspring it in others. If you've ever wondered where great ideas come from, or yearned to channel your creative energies, or just wanted some pointers on how to get those artisitic juices flowing—this book was written for you.

Along with some help from his well-known cartoonist friends, Mankoff takes you on an entertaining words-and-pictures journey through the art, craft, and zen of cartooning, along the way providing lots of personal anecdotes about his development as an artist, and about life at the world's most urbane magazine. But you don't have to be an aspiring cartoonist to appreciate The Naked Cartoonist. Mankoff's wisdom, and his practical yet whimsical approach to the creative process, are designed to benefit anyone who has ever stared at a blank piece of paper or canvas and dreamed of transforming it into something truly original (and maybe even commercial).

What's so funny? Mankoff knows best. He also knows how you can find your own personal voice and mesage, how you can learn from the masters of the past, how you can transform a current event into a comic tour-de-force...even how you can incorporate telling lies and taking naps into your daily work routine—and justify it.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Cartoon editor of the New Yorker since 1997, Mankoff has a license to be silly. This combination memoir, how-to, abridged history, manifesto and IQ test (Inanity Quotient) on the art and pseudo-science of gag panel cartooning puts that license to the test-with fine results. Much like Scott McCloud did in Understanding Comics, which examined the nature of narrative comics, Mankoff breaks down the creative process of the gag panel, offering a succession of thoughtful (dreams are "analogous to what cartoonists do when they're awake") and generally amusing insights into the craft. There's also a more or less coherent argument about the role of the subconscious mind in cartooning, in which he uses Magritte, a baseball, a tomato and Andy Warhol's soup can to explain it all for us. Still, his explanations aren't nearly as much fun as the cartoons themselves, by Mankoff and by fellow New Yorker cartoonists Roz Chast, Mort Gerberg, Jack Zeigler and others. Mankoff can be overly cute, but mostly offers smart, practical and funny ideas about how to make funny cartoons for a living. In fact, Mankoff argues that magazine cartoonists are the most creative people in the world: "If a scientist comes up with one new idea a year, he's a genius. If a cartoonist comes up with only one new idea a day, he's looking for other work." Mankoff offers such minutely and intensely considered examinations of the mechanics of cartooning that for all we know he may be right. (Nov.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781579122362
  • Publisher: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 8/5/2002
  • Pages: 144
  • Product dimensions: 7.38 (w) x 9.34 (h) x 0.63 (d)

Meet the Author


Robert Mankoff is the cartoon editor of The New Yorker and the founder and president of the Cartoon Bank. He is an accomplished cartoonist, the author of The Naked Cartoonist, and the editor of The New Yorker Book of Cartoon Puzzles and Games (both from Black Dog & Leventhal), as well as many cartoon collections. He lives in Hastings, New York.
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