Observer’s cartoonist- Shane Daniel

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One of Shane's favorite cartoons that he has drawn for the newspaper
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By Charminae George

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Around midday most days, Shane is seen with a coffee mug in one hand. It contains a cup of tea or coffee, and he sips at it as he ponders his next cartoon idea.

Since 1994, Shane Daniels has been the one drawing the cartoons in the Daily Observer, hence the reason why Paul Quinn, one of the hosts of Observer’s Voice of the People, refers to him as ‘the veteran’.    

Before featuring his artistic skills in the newspaper, Shane’s overall art journey, like Walt Disney, started with a mouse. It was a drawing of a mouse sitting on a bed that earned him encouragement and a chuckle from his mother to continue drawing cartoons.

Of the many pieces that Shane has drawn over the years, one of his favourites features former Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer squatting in his office chair. The caption below it read, “Dem say me a squat, but squatters have rights.”

The inspiration for this cartoon, Shane shares, “This was done at a time when UPP’s position as government was uncertain, and they were awaiting the results of the three seats. [Then] ALP said Baldwin was squatting in the Prime Minister’s office.”

Inspiration for all of his cartoons come from various sources. Sayings like ‘putting the cart before the horse’, and Pinocchio’s well-known trait, his nose – commonly used as an indication of a lie – are foundations for good cartoons. This is in addition to personal inspiration, of course.

Like everything in life, Shane wants his cartoons to serve a particular purpose.

“The chief purpose of the cartoons is to entertain, and be a source of humour. Sometimes, they serve to educate the public or raise a level of awareness on an issue,” he said.

Before every cartoon becomes a cartoon, there is of course a process. First, Shane reads the newspaper to find the most topical issue. It must be one that allows for a humorous spin. The next step is to visualise how the drawing will look, and determine if reference images are needed. Last, but not least, the final step involves putting pencil to paper and ‘poof’ a masterpiece appears.

In closing, to those who enjoy Shane’s cartoons, he says, “Thanks for your show of love and support over the years. It is quite motivating.”

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