Political cartoons | Legendary animator Hayao Miyazaki said in a Japanese radio interview that it was a “mistake” for the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo to publish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad. “For me, I think it’s a mistake to make caricatures of what different cultures worship,” he said when asked about the January attack on the magazine’s offices that left 12 dead. “It’s a good idea to stop doing that.” Miyazaki reportedly said cartoonists should use caricature to target their own country’s politicians. “”It just looks suspect to go after political leaders from other countries,” he explained. [Kotaku]
Passings | Indian editorial cartoonist Rajinder Puri has died at age 80. A self-taught artist, Puri worked for the U.K. newspapers The Guardian and the Glasgow Herald in his 20s, then returned to India, where he became the cartoonist for Hindustan Times and The Statesman. Puri became active in politics himself during the Emergency of 1975-77, when then Prime Minster Indira Gandhi suspended elections and curtailed civil rights. Puri’s editor had already been told that Puri should be “a little less vicious” in his treatment of Gandhi, and when she declared the Emergency, he left cartooning and became a founding member of a new political party. He eventually returned to cartooning, however. Puri was a self-taught artist, and his colleague E.P. Unny writes, “Last decade, when Photoshop became the flavour of the newsroom, he mastered the graphic software in his own unorthodox way, which would have made a trained professional squirm. But he chipped and chopped with ‘the blessed mouse’ to tone, colour and texture his drawings as passionately as a cub cartoonist.” [The Indian Express]
Creators | Artist Christian Balez, who lives in Santiago, Chile, talks about the challenge of illustrating Robert Moses: The Master Builder of New York City, which was originally published in French and will be released here later this year by NBM. [Co.Design]
Comics | Reed Beebe celebrates Presidents Day with a look at Prez, a DC Comics series about a teenage president that lasted just four issues, but popped up again in Neil Gaiman’s Sandman. The concept is being revived once more by creators Mark Russell and Ben Caldwell as part of DC’s post-Convergence plans. [Nothing But Comics]
Comics | Scott Edelman posts some World War II-era comics ads in which Captain Marvel Jr. urges readers to recycle their scrap paper — which may explain why some of those comics are so rare. [Scott Edelman]
Comics | Kevin Garcia marks Valentine’s Day with a roundup of superhero romances. [Paste]
Conventions | Henry Barajas files a thorough report on the Amazing Arizona Comic Con, with lots of photos and an account of his encounters with a dealer who was apparently selling unauthorized reproductions. [The Beat]
Digital comics | Gary Tyrrell picks up on a story that’s significant for digital comics creators, the implement of the new VAT regulations for European customers, and notes that Gumroad is handling all the details for creators that use that service. [Fleen]
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