Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Team Cul De Sac

If you're in the Washington, D.C. area then you need to be at the Politics and Prose bookstore Wednesday night for the Team Cul De Sac signing [link].

Richard Thompson is the cartoonist behind the popular strip "Cul De Sac" [read online] and "Richard's Poor Almanac". "Cul De Sac" quickly spread through the newspaper community even in a time when newspapers are dying and slashing the size of their comics page. Last year he won the Reuben Award for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year. He's a fairly popular guy himself. Despite his success he's widely respected and even loved in the cartoonist community. He got the notoriously absent Calvin and Hobbes cartoonist Bill Watterson to write an introduction to one of his books. That's only slightly easier than getting Charles Schultz to write you a blurb for your book cover and Schultz is dead. I've never heard a bad thing said about the man and lots of praise for what a great and funny guy he is even before he developed what he calls "a pain in the fundament".

This "pain in the fundament" is better known to us as Parkinson's disease. He was diagnosed a couple of years ago. Recently, Chris Sparks, a friend of his, got the idea to use the popularity of "Cul De Sac" and Richard Thompson to get other cartoonists and illustrators to come up with some fan art they could use to raise money for Parkinson's research. They had so many submissions they couldn't keep track of them all. Not just from the big names, but from fans all over. The submissions were put together in a book "Team Cul de Sac: Cartoonists Draw the Line at Parkinson's" which you can buy and get signed at the previously mentioned Politics and Prose event.

There was a previously held event at One More Page Books. We got in on the mob scene there. There were artists packed around a table and more packed around the artists. If you wanted everyone's signature you had to keep an eye on not just those at the table, but those sneaky one hiding along the wall.

The One More Page Books mob.
Photo courtesy of Yummy.

Richard Thompson signing my book.
Photo courtesy of Yummy.
Richard Thompson and I struggling to hear each other.
Photo courtesy of Yummy.
Some time back I sent Yummy this comic strip.
It's what got her hooked on the strip. And when the first book came out with this comic in it she wanted that page signed. It was an unusual request and Richard remembered it. He remembered who she was and signed her book like this.

Much of the art that appears in the book got auctioned off. I managed to get three of the pieces and they were just delivered the other day.
Bill Larocque shows Alice thinks of herself more as
Alice Cooper than Richard's view of as Alice in Wonderland.

Ron Wolfe continues the Alice in Wonderland theme
with a damn fine replica of the style of the art from the books.

Adam Koford, Petey, and I share a similar fear of soccer balls.

Finally, this is how Richard signed my book.
And you thought Richard didn't really read this blog. HA!

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