Saturday, September 4, 2010

One of the Greats

I just now saw where Paul Conrad, one of the greats of editorial cartooning, has died. Pulitzer-winning and Nixon enemy (and proud of it), Conrad had a distinctive style of art and wit.

He was a hero to me, back in the '60s when I was so sure I was going to be a cartoonist. I used to hang around his office when he was editorial cartoonist for the Denver Post. I would bug him for advice and watch him draw, and he was always gracious and willing to put up with my noive. When he left for the Los Angeles Times, I'll bet he was just trying to get away from me. But then I hung out and bugged his successor at the Post, Pat Oliphant.

Man I had ink in my veins back in those days.

Conrad sometimes used to draw tribute cartoons of deceased politicians standing at the pearly gates. I imagine a drawing of Conrad standing there and St Peter checking his roster book and saying, "No. If Nixon ever checked in here, his page is missing."

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