You may have guessed, from some of my cartoons earlier this year ( specifically Jan 26-30, but sporadically since ), I am a big fan of old comic books. I am also a big fan of cartoon strips – their history, and stories behind the people who write and draw them. To that end, I recently received one of my semi-regular orders of comics from mycomicshop.com, including a couple of issues of the wonderful and sorely missed Cartoonist PROfiles magazine.
For over thirty years, Cartoonist PROfiles was, as comics historian R C Harvey called it, “the profession’s longest-running periodical—the industry’s leading ‘insider’ magazine”. It featured articles on how to break into the field, interviews with professionals, and so much more. For anyone wanting to be a cartoonist, editor Jud Hurd opened up this playground for all to see on a quarterly basis.
In one of the issues I just received though (cover-dated Sept. 1985), was a surprise, and a pleasant one at that. In their pages they were announcing the winners of a cartoon context run through the Museum of Cartoon Art, and one of their winners ( third prize for the 11 and under ) was none other than ( well, I’m pretty sure it is anyway ) Family Guy and American Dad creator Seth McFarlane ( cleverly disguised, or more likely mislabeled, as Seth McFarland ).
If nothing else, I think this shows what hidden joys old magazines, and old comic books can bring. Even when you think you know what you are getting, you can still be surprised… even if you’re a cantankerous old bastard like me.