Cartoonists 2008: The private view
Last night I attended the private view of the Cartoonists 2008 show at the Chris Beetles Gallery. This was my first time showing work at a London gallery, so it was a pretty big deal for me.
There was a small section with my work in it and a few others scattered around the gallery. Ironically, the only one I didn't spot was the one I posted here on Monday. That doesn't mean it wasn't in there though because, believe me, there was a lot of cartoons by many cartoonists in the show, every square inch of wall space seemed to be covered, so I may have missed it.
To be honest, there were far too many cartoons to take in. As I've said on this blog before, cartoons are really meant to be seen in magazines and papers, and it's a bit weird seeing so many in one go. But it does give you a chance to see magnificent works by the likes of Mike Williams and Ed McLachlan in their full glory, rather than reduced to fill a two-column space. And of course, it gives people a chance to buy cartoons, which I'm certainly not knocking!
The place was packed, with lots of people clearly enjoying the cartoons. And it was a good chance to catch up with a few cartoonist pals and meet a few others for the first time. Add to this the free champagne, and the fact that I spotted a "sold" spot on one of my cartoons, and you have my idea of a good night.
Footnote: Probably the most surreal part of the night was seeing my biography on the wall. This is because it was written by me, just four days ago, and because they asked me to write something with humour in it, like the biography on my main website, rather than just listing where I've been published etc. So I emailed it to them, thinking, I'm sure this sillines can't be the kind of thing they're after really, and it was reproduced practically word for word. Here it is:
Born in Catterick, North Yorkshire, in 1968, Royston Robertson has been drawing cartoons for about as long as he can remember. At the age of seven, he wrote to the TV show Jim'll Fix It to ask if he could edit the Beano for a day. Jim never fixed it.
Between school and university, instead of going to work on a kibbutz, Royston ran the comic DoodleBug with a group of friends. Part fanzine, part Viz, it built up a strong following in the North East.
After university, Royston trained as a journalist, giving in to the “get a proper job” hype, and eventually worked for five years as a sub-editor at The Times. But all the time he kept drawing and selling gag cartoons and he gave up the day job in 2004.
He has been published in Private Eye, Reader's Digest, The Spectator, Prospect, New Statesman, The Oldie and many other publications throughout the world. He has also drawn cartoons for Oxford University Press, Children’s BBC and Scholastic Children’s Books.
Royston Robertson is now based in Broadstairs, Kent.
Jimmy Savile has still not replied to his letter.
Cartoons by Royston