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Make others ‘lol’

Drawing cartoons is a branch of journalism. There are political cartoons on political issues or political people etc, social cartoons on social issues, and comics. These are generally humorous, intended primarily for entertainment.

education Updated: Jul 24, 2012 16:18 IST

The lowdown
Drawing cartoons is a branch of journalism. There are political cartoons on political issues or political people etc, social cartoons on social issues, and comics. These are generally humorous, intended primarily for entertainment. Cartoonists make political, satirical or social cartoons in newspapers and magazines or develop comic strips, comic books, graphic novels or animation. In India, cartoonists have to tread somewhat cautiously. A case in point is a recent incident when some sections of people were peeved at certain old cartoons which were re-published in school textbooks

Clockwork
9am: Read newspapers, magazines and watch news on TV before trawling the Internet
Noon: Ideate
1pm: Start working on the idea to make the next day's cartoon
3.30pm: Ensure that no major development has taken place which might have rendered the cartoon meaningless
4pm: New developments in news related to the cartoon — rework it to make it more apt, timely and appealing
5pm: Check out the latest cartoons, images, and illustrations on websites, journals as well as magazines to stay updated

The payoff
The salary depends on the cartoonist’s skill and experience and the publication you work for. One can earn anywhere between Rs. 250 to Rs. 2,000 for one cartoon

Skills/TRAITS
* Be creative - good at drawing and sketching and quick
* Be very witty
* Journalistic bent of mind

Getting there
Do a full-fledged art programme at the undergraduate or postgraduate level before you apply for a job or any freelance work. Keep building up a portfolio and sending your work to editors or the design heads of newspapers or magazines who might even decide to hire you. You can also apply to publishing houses which print comic books

Institutes and URLs
* Short-term course in creative writing and cartooning from Pran’s Media Institute, Noida
www.pran.in
* BFA, College of Art, University of Delhi.
www.delhi.gov.in/wps/wcm/connect/lib_collegeofart/Collegeofarts/Home/Programmes
* BA in painting, Maharaja Sayajirao University, Baroda
www.msubaroda.ac.in
* BFA, Sir JJ School of Art, Mumbai
www.mu.ac.in/colleges.html

Pros and cons
* Name and fame are easy to come by and sometimes cartoonists get to be even more popular than journalists
* Most political cartoons are critical in nature. You could rub people up the wrong way
* There is a lot of struggle involved. There are very few people who can fend for themselves in this field. Others have to look for alternative sources of income

One who is honest, has a sense of humour, has high intellect and is quick at drawing is apt for this profession. If I could make one or two people laugh, I'd say, I have fulfilled my mission for life Pran, creator of Chacha Chaudhary comics