The blog of Richard Thompson, caricaturist, creator of "Cul de Sac," and winner of the 2011 Reuben Award for Outstanding Cartoonist of the Year.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Crowd Scene

Here's the middle panel of today's CdS. Because if I'm going to draw 500 berzerk toddlers I'm going to show it full-sized.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Rubber Room

Here's an illustration I did for this week's New Yorker. The story's about the Rubber Rooms that the New York school department uses to stash teachers with various complaints against them, where they can stay for months or years, even till retirement. Some of the complaints lodged against them can be fairly mundane, usually involving negligence, but a few were pretty lurid. Like one who was falling down drunk in the classroom.

So this was the first rough I did, which was rejected as being too extreme. Understandably, as it's a little extreme, you know?

Here's the final from the second sketch. I cleaned it up some and photoshopped out some clutter on the desk, The size changed on the page, so they cropped it on top, mimicking the watercolor edge and lowering the word "today". Et voila, an illustration is born. Or made.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

2010 Already?

Look what's available at Amazon! Tear the page off each day and store it carefully in a helium-filled tank, for a lifetime of memories!
The extra content on back of each page includes riddles, puzzles, inspiring quotes, daily facts, useful tips for all professions, your lucky numbers, first lessons in Italian, directions for constructing your own trebuchet, addresses & phone numbers of celebrities, the full text of Proust's A Remembrance of Things Past, funnier cartoons by better cartoonists and Messages from the Future supplied by John Glynn. And it's also being offered as a six-page-a-day calendar for those of you with busy lives, or who just like to waste paper.

Click on the image below for a bonus wallpaper version. 

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Remembering Elvis

This continues a tradition of running this on the anniversary of his passing, though I usually forget to.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Today's Mail

The FedEx Man brought me early copies of Children At Play, courtesy of Andrews & McMeel Graphic Goddess Caty Neis. Ooh, I hope the jokes are good, 'cause I've forgotten most of them. Review to come.

The image below was scanned off the original painting for the cover. I kinda had in mind that it should look like a parody of the million or so Little Golden Books that floated around my house when I was a kid till all the pages fell out.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Tom's Greatest Dance

It's now Rankopediaed as the Best Comic Strip Ever. Here's why Tom the Dancing Bug so richly merits this vital yet meaningless distinction.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

The Pool

This ran in the Post Magazine two years ago and I meant to post it during the week of pool strips (which were, of course, reruns). It's a portrait of every suburban pool I ever frequented, or even (briefly) worked at.

Today's Poor Almanack

This is the first one I've done in about a month. I might be a little out of practice.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


While I wait for my memories of San Diego to return, here's a job I did for my friend Bono Mitchell, the Graphic Goddess. When watercolor works, it's the most satisfying medium there is (when it doesn't it's an invitation to homicide). For the ground I used one of my favorite mixes- Daniel Smith Quinacridone Burnt Orange and Grumbacher Terre Verte. The quinacridone is transparent and staining and the terre verte is opaque and sedimentary so you get lots of happy accidents while they fight it out on the paper.

As a bonus, here's a previous cover. To view the full series see this post.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

My Big Fancy San Diego Comic Con Report

It was all a happy blur. It might've helped if I'd taken the time to wipe my glasses off, but that would probably have destroyed the mystery, and when you're confronted with 125.000 people, the majority of whom are dressed as Wonder Woman, mystery is what you cling to.

More to come as my memory clears.

Today's Lio

The great Mark Tatulli tells me that the second child from the left in the bottom panel is me, and I believe it because I drew cars all the time when I was a kid. The only detail that he might've gotten wrong is the name; I was called Dickie for a long time. But I'm pretty thankful he didn't use Dickie, 'cause I don't want that getting out in public, no thank you.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Today's Pearls Before Swine

Leaves me speechless with delight. especially as how I can sue for millions and retire in comfort. Thanks, Stephan!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Thank You

For all the enormously kind messages, comments & emails. I didn't mean to leave the preceding post up this long, and now I'm feeling all maudlin and insufferable, like I should be posing for a Parade Magazine cover on facing adversity. And who needs that? I won't bring all this up again unless I need a cheap excuse, like, "this cartoon would've been funnier but, ow, my Parkinson's."

I have to go to San Diego today for 5 days of sensory overload. If I can figure out how, I'll post something from there. We'll see. 

And I owe many of you emails, or worse, which are forthcoming. Meantime, if anybody's got any good jokes please leave them in the comments. 

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Some News

When I started this blog two years ago with the kind urging of Mark Heath, I'd intended to pretty much stay out of it. Oh sure, I'd post work and whine about deadlines, and drivel on about pen nibs and other obsessions. But I wouldn't drag too much personal stuff into it, and I'd especially avoid photos of me (the post below and this one notwithstanding). 

That said, I'm going to bend my vague rule a bit, mostly because with this San Diego Funfest looming I feel obliged to go a little public. For the last year or so I've noticed a few odd symptoms; shakiness, hoarseness, silly walks, random clumsiness and the like. So the other day I went to see a neurologist and, after having me me jump through hoops, stand on my head and juggle chain saws, he said I've got Parkinson's. It's a pain in the fundament and it slows me down, but it hasn't really affected my drawing hand at all and it's treatable . And it could be a useful ploy in my ever-losing battle against deadlines.

That's my news and, as I said, I'm passing it along mostly because I'm gong to be more sociable in the next week. And if I drop the chain saw in the middle of a presentation I want you to know why.

Friday, July 10, 2009

San Diego Comic Con

I guess they're serious about this. Full schedule here. Who all's going?

Tom Spurgeon has 100 tips on how to withstand and even enjoy SDCC.

And on Saturday, there's this-

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Old Historical Painting

This is an old illustration illustrating what I forget. It was done with ink, colored pencil and alkyd paint applied with a wad of the spongy foam rubber stuff they put under wall to wall carpeting, which was my favorite way of working, till I got sick of the smell of the Krylon spray that I'd use to force it to dry. Watercolor, that's the stuff.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Upcoming Mystery Panel of Doom

Jeez, I hope he's OK.


I have the feeling I've done this cartoon before. But I couldn't find it so I drew it again in hopes nobody would notice.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Talking Out Loud at the Library

Here's where I'll be next Monday, and please come join me. Besides me yammering, there'll be a bake sale, balloon rides, a Dewey Decimation Librarian Smackdown and the annual Reference Desk Scavenger Hunt (details sketchy). I've already asked both of you who said you'd be there (Hi, Anita!) to bring bulky items of clothing to strew around on the seats to make them look more populated, and if the rest of you could do the same I'd really appreciate it.

There'll be a book signing to follow, courtesy of Barnes & Noble. If you have a recently checked out item from the library you'd like signed or otherwise defaced, please present it then.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

By Request

For Woodrowfan. Strangely enough, I'd just scanned this last week to send to the Funny Times, so posting it was easy.