An event called “A Conversation with Political Cartoonists” held at College of the Canyons delved into the art of political cartooning and featured current editorial cartoonists David Brown and Steve Greenberg as guest speakers.
David Brown is an award-winning political cartoonist for the LA Sentinel who uses editorial cartooning as a platform to inspire and educate others.
Brown started off advertising in the East coast but later fell into political cartooning when he moved to Los Angeles. His book, “Obama, Race and the Media: Drawing my own Conclusions”, which features his cartoons highlighting Obama’s presidential campaign, won him the NAACP Image Award in 2009.
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Steve Greenberg is a freelance editorial cartoonist whose work has been published widely and has been featured in the Daily News, the Ventura County Star, and LA Observed.
As a young man, Greenberg described himself as an “apathetic and unread student” who rarely involved himself with politics. He later decided to take his interest in art and implement it into what he was learning about the political world around him.
Though different in artistic style, both cartoonists agreed that political cartooning is an important medium for anyone to better understand politics.
“It’s empowering for me to be able to share my opinion with others,” said Brown.
The cartoonists also spoke of the late Paul Conrad, whose art is currently on display at COC, and who inspired both cartoonists to challenge themselves as artists.
Greenberg mentioned that Conrad taught him to add another dimension to his political cartoons in order to bring them to the next level of interest.
Brown was inspired by Conrad’s “aggressive sense of compassion for the underdog.”
Conrad’s bold black and white imagery and his unique ability to convey a political idea without using words has also greatly impacted the work of Brown.
The artists believe that the world of editorial cartooning is changing.
“Political cartooning has never been so diverse. There is more diversity in voices. The mix of female cartoonists is a huge change,” said Brown.
“I Con, The Brilliant Work of Paul Conrad” exhibit is featured at the College of the Canyons art gallery until September 30.
Visit the exhibit to see more than 50 works of Conrad’s more notable editorial cartoons.