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Video: Interview with Mikhaela Reid and Jen Sorensen

Here is another interview from this year’s Association of American Editorial Cartoonists (AAEC) Convention. This time, I sit down with Mikhaela Reid and Jen Sorenson, two successful female alternative cartoonists featured on our site, and discuss the state of the industry and the uphill battle female cartoonists face.

In fact, the conversation was so good, we had to break it up into two parts:

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zJm7XZYLAY&hl=en&fs=1&]

Here are some of Mikhaela’s recent cartoons:

 
And here are some of Sorenson’s:

By Daryl Cagle

Daryl Cagle is the founder and owner of Cagle Cartoons, Inc. He is one of the most widely published editorial cartoonists and is also the editor of The Cagle Post. For the past 35 years, Daryl has been one of America’s most prolific cartoonists.

5 replies on “Video: Interview with Mikhaela Reid and Jen Sorensen”

That Jen Sorensen is so witty with her dry sense of humor and "slightly" cynical slant. Love her commentaries on society's myriad momentary preoccupations like the above: overscheduled kids as well as the need to have the newest model of technology. Really makes one question where humans are headed! Go, girl. The direction I see our society heading will continue to provide rich and interesting material for you.

The lack of female cartoonists could possibly be attributed to the fact that women tend to mature earlier than men. By that I mean when young girls develope their artistic talents they could possibly approach the world of art in a more serious vein and therefore may tend to explore the more classic form.
In other words, at an early age they may aspire to be "classic" artists looking towards having their work displayed in galleries and hanging on walls.
On the other hand, due to their immaturity, more young boys may tend to eschew thoughts about a more serious art career in favor of drawing cartoon characters patterned after those they grew up reading about in comic books.

I agree that Michaela kept cutting into the questions asked of Jen. She would have had her turn to speak but she kept taking up Jen's time, which is a drag since Jen seems very articulate in comparison to Michaela.

But hey the more female cartoonists the better. Hillary Price (Rhymes With Orange) didn't get mentioned here. Could be that she can't draw worth a damn but she is funny anyway. Trina Robbins, who can draw great, deserves kudos too.

I recall my art school cartooning class had hardly any girls. The girls I dated in art school were either in fashion design or illustration/fine arts. Serious mature stuff. The ones that did take cartooning as a major were very introverted, but also were very mature minded so I doubt immaturity comes to play with female cartoonists in the way that DANN theorizes about male cartoonists. Maybe its some primal urge that boys have way more than girls. Question: were any of the pre-historic cave paintings done by women? They seemed to record the hunts (mostly bison), a primarily male activity, so that could be the origin of cartooning as being dominated by males.

@ JimG

I hadn't really given any thought to those girls that DID take up cartooning. I didn't mean to imply that girls who took up cartooning would be immature as well. I also had failed to consider the obvious fashion and graphic design aspects of an art education. My bad.

Now that you've pointed it out, I would imagine that their more mature nature might lend itself to the possibility of young women using more mature minded cartoon subjects in which to express their talent.

Thank you for your insight.

In response to DANN: now that I think about it, the female cartoonists that I can recall have a more dry, sarcastic, and ironic sense of humor, within a more feminine perspective in terms of social observations, and are way less slapstick (physical) or action-oriented in their approach. Both Michaela and Jen are good examples of that. Guys seem to lean toward more boisterously drawn,visceral cartoons. Of course these are generalizations and there are exceptions but it seems that way to me.

As for your comment about guys who avoid "serious" art to pursue a cartooning career to keep that comic book loving adolescent attitude extended into their adult years: Some superhero comic artists may very well fill that description, but I have been a published cartoonist ( for three years-now on a cartooning sabbatical) and in my art school experience the kids in my cartooning class had to take rotational classes in Photography, Commercial Art, Illustration, oil painting, sculpture, watercolor, art history, and media arts as well as cartooning class (my major). As a result, I have a well-rounded art background. In the working world I have done professional layout, paste-up, photographic reproduction, spot illustrations, logo design, multilith press operation, and graphic art, along with my gag cartoons. All "serious" areas of the pro art field.

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