What's Up with Upshaw? Episode 9

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Last Tuesday I was at East Chicago's Clemente Center doing caricatures of the kids in the EC Library's Summer Reading Program.  This time, there were more than a dozen kids to sketch; I'm surprised my markers held up with all the coloring of the faces.  I may still have to buy new flesh tone markers.  The kids were happy with their pictures and mesmerized by seeing me draw.  Kids are my best audience because they are fascinated with seeing a cartoon appear right before their eyes.

July is the month I decided to really get serious about making funny cartoons.  For decades I've been leaning on so-called "real" jobs (substitute teacher, Army Reserve cook, etc.) just because I needed the money.  But eventually these jobs, while profitable, took a toll on my health, mental and physical.  My big excuse for not really going for my cartooning dreams was that it took so long, that I had to live in a big city to succeed--and for the most part, that was true.  Now the Internet exists, and so do websites that showcase people's art of all kinds.  And I have software that helps me create from my own imagination.  And with social media, I can connect with people like me who also create.  I've run out of excuses!

Right now I'm feeling led to not sign up for substitute teaching this year.  I feel led to go full speed ahead with creative work, now that it's starting to make a profit for me.  I can do article writing; maybe sign up with Annex Press.  I just have to have faith--less faith in my talents than in the God Who gave them to me.  Yes, I'm getting spiritual.  Cartoons are what I was put on earth to do, so I do them.  Creative work is what I was meant for:  writing and drawing.  I'm scared to pieces of going forward but I'm going forward.  The Creator made me a creator, so I will create!

I leave you now with Brianna (I hope I spelled her name right) and her caricature from Clemente Center.


About the author


I call myself a 'tooner--one who cartoons. Animated shorts, single-panel gag cartoons and celebrity caricatures are my specialty!

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