Cartoonist group photo in Toronto restaurant

A gaggle of devastatingly handsome cartoonists pose for a group portrait in a Toronto restaurant. Left to right: Chris Ware, Charles Burns, Seth, Chester Brown, Anouk Ricard, Peter Birkemoe, Adrian Tomine. (photo: Nathalie Atkinson)


    1. Correlation ≠ causation.

      A perfectly plausible hypothesis one could draw from this photo is that congenitally myopic children who have trouble seeing the chalk board in school are more likely to hone their doodling skills.

      1. But they need to stop drawing while resting their foreheads on their other hand.  It’s wearing them smooth.

  1. They look like a flock of starlings; ready to take flight at the first sudden movement or loud noise.

  2. I think the abundance of bulging foreheads is interesting and possibly significant. I seem to remember in an old phrenology book that said this was a sign of greater than average intellectual capacity…and knowing 50% of the comics that the artists represented here I gotta say that Chris Ware and Charles Burns are the king of the forehead bulgers = smarty pants.

    No body snarking — I’m serious !

    1. Ware looks like a forehead alien from Star Trek. I’d always assumed that if he happened to drop in Chicago Comics when I was there that he’d sort of fade into the background, but he’s actually weirder-looking in person than he draws himself. (So is Chester Brown, for that matter.)

    2. According to Dr. Galls Phrenology a bulging forehead is a sign for “Reiselust/Ortsinn” (wanderlust, travel desire) or “Witz” (humor).

  3. Taken at the Korean Village resto on Bloor W.; amazing service!….he said, apropos of not much at all…

    1.  Chris, Seth, and Charles look like triplets, Chester looks like their eccentric older brother, and the guy in the back looks worried that he’s gonna look like them in 10 years.

  4. You know how it can be difficult to forget Tom Cruise’s scientology baggage and just enjoy watching his movies? I think I’ve got that problem now with Chester Brown after reading Paying For It.

    1.  A lot of people got that mental picture of him after the Yummy Fur arc (The Playboy, I think) in which he depicted his unusual masturbation method.

  5. I’m amazed with how thin they all are.  I thought that drawing cartoons for a living would have them put on some weight over time.

  6. Used to see Seth and many of the others at Jet Fuel in Cabbage Town all the time … this picture makes me feel so old!  These were the young turks of the freak/alt comics world not that long ago.

  7. Here’s a little slideshow of pics from the discussion these heroes had at the Bloor Cinema the same evening this photo was taken.

    Such a wonderful evening it was!

  8. It’s actually pretty hard to assemble a weirder bunch…Chris Ware is strange…Seth and Chester are super nice both both terribly weird…and Birkmoe isn’t weird he’s just socially awkward and bad with people…

    1.  He, Seth, and Chester Brown used to be like the Three Musketeers of autobiographical cartoons–at one point Matt was even living in Toronto and the three would hang out regularly–but I get the feeling that Matt has withdrawn quite a lot in recent years; his output has slowed down to about nothing.

  9. I should amend my gossipy comments above by saying that, with the exception of Anouk Ricard and Peter Birkemoe, whose work I’m simply unfamiliar with, I admire the work of the men above hugely.

  10. I think at least one person alluded to this in the midst of the high school yearbook critiques, but this is an astonishing collection of very talented people.

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