Archive for September, 2009

Shake the Helping Hand. Or Bite It.

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Where is the country’s primary comfort zone with big government overhauls? In Richard Stevenson’s article for the Times’ Week In Review, he ponders this between the historical touchstones of Obama’s current ongoing struggle to radically reform health care and George W. Bush’s failed attempt at radically reforming social security in his last term as president. Stevenson’s primary observation is that issue-specific details notwithstanding, the fear tactics that are currently being used by Republicans to hinder Obama’s progress with health care were similarly employed by Democrats in Bush’s last term when his Social Security reformation platform crumbled. The tactics remain the same, but the sides switch.

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Landing on images to illustrate the ideas in this article was no easy task for me. It’s a testament to art director Kelly Doe’s gift of distillation that she was able to explain these ideas to me succinctly so that I had something to work with before we had a proper story to read and review. Moreover, since I had another illustration on the front page of the Week In Review only a few short weeks ago which also referenced health care reform, there was added pressure for me not to repeat myself thematically or stylistically. I’m still up in the air as to how well or how poorly I may have pulled that off.

Additional sketches and concepts that were submitted went like this:

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In other news pertinent to the Week In Review, Kelly has also launched a new feature in the section called Considered in which each week, an artist visually interprets a current news event purely with pictures. For the kickoff, she hired none other than illustration MVP Edel Rodriguez to do a rendering of Disney’s 4 billion dollar acquisition of Marvel. Unsurprisingly, it’s beautiful—particularly that bit with The Hulk.