The Cartoon Picayune is an annual magazine anthology of journalism in the form of comics edited by Josh Kramer. This modest zine is a home and showcase in print for truthful reporting being created in the comics medium.
Have you ever flown through a 9,000 word magazine article? Cried during a documentary? Daydreamed about a radio story? Good journalism is powerful, and not just because it can remove presidents. The best nonfiction taps into the imagination, and like the best fiction, it allows us to see new aspects of the world.
Comics is our medium of choice. We think that it allows for more empathy and reader interaction than nearly any other visual medium. Most important, we think that we can make some incredible journalism with comics.
Journalists' methods of researching, interviewing, and investigating can be powerful tools for cartoonists. Likewise, the graphic poetry of comics can be perfect for communicating the truths sought by journalists. Comics and journalism were meant for each other, and we're doing our best to prove it!
We are journalists and cartoonists. We report and we draw. Some of us do one of those things; some of us do both. A few of us have been doing this for a while and others are just starting out. The Cartoon Picayune proudly publishes experimentation in nonfiction comics from students and seasoned professionals alike.
"Where" and "who" are together because we believe that face to face interviews with sources are important for cartoonists, and that creating images in the audience's mind is important for journalists. There are many ways journalism and cartooning come together, but we think that shoe-leather reporting is the first natural intersection. 1. Find out what's happening. 2. Write and draw it. 3. Submit it for publication.
We strive for a middle ground between the auteur model of independent comics and the editor model of investigative journalism. We have copy editors, and eventually we will have fact checkers. Collaboration is the name of the game, but in an open style that discourages fixed roles and encourages creativity and spontaneity. We also believe in the Society of Professional Journalists' Code of Ethics, in that we hope to seek truth and report it while minimizing harm, acting independently, and being accountable.
Issues of The Cartoon Picayune debuts once a year and is sold in stores around the United States and on this site. The first issue was published in April 2011, and all printed issues are still available and for sale. Subscriptions are available here.