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Types of cartoons

Updated: Jun 22, 2018

I know you are reading this blog so I can presume your interest in cartoons.

#Cartoons and cartooning have been around for many many decades, and one of the first thing that may come to mind on hearing this term is "Disney" or "Warner Brothers."

But is cartooning just limited to #Disney or Comics? No, right?

Therefore, I thought to write something this time (and not draw). I thought of sharing my idea around cartooning and cartoon types.

As you might have already imagined, there is more than one type of cartoon, so let us list them to keep it simple.

Following are the types of cartoons:

Of course, within each of the above categories, we can have multiple sub-categories.

Following illustration depicts some of these sub-categories.

Types of cartoons
Figure 1

#Editorial cartoons - An editorial toon, also known as a political

The cartoon is a drawing containing a commentary expressing the cartoonist's opinion. The cartoonist who writes and draws such images is known as an editorial cartoonist.

They typically combine artistic skill, hyperbole and satire to question authority and bring attention to corruption, political situation, violence and other social ills or any particular socio-economic situation. 

Political cartoons often face the wrath of criticism or get into controversies as they are dealing with political decisions or political figures or parties. They also pick up with sensitive issues related and many times offends a community or race.

#Gag cartoons - A gag cartoon (also called panel cartoon or gag panel) is most often a single-panel cartoon, usually including a caption beneath the drawing. Some cases, dialogue may appear in speech balloons and at times no caption.

A lot of time, the cartoonist takes pride in having a gag cartoon with no caption but still tickling the funny bone. Gag could be from any domain of the society. It could relate to business or profession or even an event.

As the name implies—"gag" being a show business term for a comedic idea—these cartoons are most often intended to provoke laughter.

#Comic - Comic strips are a type of "cartoon" that publishes in newspapers or magazine or even websites and blogs, but they are usually just called "comic strips".

The significant difference between a comic strip and gag toon is strip cartoons are multi-panel toons while gags are single panel toons.

Also, they often appear as superheroes or in (kids) storybooks.

Whether it is a gag or comic cartoon, it can relate to fantasy cartoons, in which there is an apparent connection with reality. The whole purpose of the toon is to get a laugh.

Animation - An animated cartoon is a film for the cinema, television or any other type of screen, which is made using following drawings.

Animated toons can be created for commercial, educational, and personal purposes. With the use of computers and social media reaching the end consumer in a faster way, the use of animation based toons has increased for advertisements as well.

Also, depending on the publication space the cartoonist may add a dash of variety and can mash up one or more types.

Also, publication and type of audiences will play an essential role in the kind of cartoon used.

Following are some of my favourite cartoonist spanning the type of cartoons:

1. Mario Miranda (gag, editorial) 2. Ronald Searle (gag) 3. R K Laxman (editorial, gag, story) 4. Roz Chast (gag) 5. Chad Crow (editorial) 6. George Booth (gag) 7. Theodor Seuss Geisel [Dr. Seuss] (animation, story) 8. Scott Adams (gag, comic) 9. Herge (comic) 10. Charles Schulz (comic, animation) 11. Sax (gag)

For now, signing off but will be back with some an article on cartoon publication and syndication channels.

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