Who?

As-a-younginBorn in 1968, Graeme MacKay grew up in Dundas, Ontario, Canada. He honed his skills as a junior meat department clerk at a nearby grocery story as a teen in the 1980s and seemed destined to  making a career out of meat wrapping and butchering. In a metaphorical sense, that was indeed the result.

Once he graduated from Parkside High School (demolished in the 2010s to become a cemetery) in Dundas, Graeme attended the University of Ottawa majoring in History and Political Science. There he submitted cartoons, including a comic strip called Alas & Alack, to the student newspaper, The Fulcrum, and became the graphics editor.

Graeme worked in the 90s as a clerk at the Bacon Counter in the Food Halls of Harrod’s Department Store in London.

After a 2 year working tour through Europe and North Africa he returned to Canada in 1994 and submitted cartoons to various newspapers. His work caught the eye of The Hamilton Spectator and in 1997, he was hired as a full-time editorial cartoonist.

Since then, his wit and biting cartoons have graced the pages of his hometown paper. His work regularly appears regionally, in the Niagara peninsula and southern Ontario, through Star-metroland Media, in the Niagara Falls Review, the Welland Tribune, the St. Catharines Standard, the Waterloo Region Record, and Peterborough Examiner

In May 2014, Graeme and other Canadian editorial cartoonists travelled to Cuba

In May 2014, Graeme and other Canadian editorial cartoonists travelled to Cuba

Besides creating five editorial cartoons per week for the Spectator, Graeme’s work is nationally syndicated through Artizans. Through distribution his cartoons appear across the Internet and in newspapers, big and small, throughout Canada, and occasionally in the United States. His illustrations are also commissioned by private individuals, advocacy groups, and corporations.

In the early 2000’s he complemented his editorial cartoon job by illustrating a local cartoon strip called Gridlock.

Between 2008 and 2010, Graeme was President of the Association of Canadian Editorial Cartoonists, and hosted its biennial gathering in Hamilton in September, 2010. He also ran its website and many of the articles he scoured from the Internet relating to editorial cartooning at the time serve as a terrific resource and are now preserved through the Internet Archive. He is a two-time recipient 2006, and 2013, of a UN Citation, The Ranan Lurie Political Cartoon Award.  In 2014, 2018. and 2020, he was recognized among his peers in the Association of Canadian Cartoonists with the George Townsend award, also known as “Townsie” award. He has been twice nominated for a National Newspaper Award in 2020 and 2021.

Keenly interested in history, Graeme has embarked on projects to create caricatures of Canadian Prime Ministers, U.S. Presidents, and British monarchs. He plans on adding more international figures to these galleries and post them to his online stores hosted at Redbubble.com, and TeePublic

Marking the 20th anniversary of his tenure at the Spectator in 2017, he published his first book, You Might Be From Hamilton If… printed by MacIntyre Purcell Publishing Inc.

In 2018, he began a series of cartoon strips called “Young Doug Ford“, which features the Premier of Ontario through the lens of 1970s and 80s youth, a period of time Graeme experienced and uses as a nostalgic setting for satire and amusement. 

The Green Spirits outside Westminster

At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, an editorial cartoon of his went viral while at the same time serving as example of the perils of appropriation of intellectual property in the Internet era. On the other hand, the benefits of social media has led to a fascinating evolution of an illustration that has taken on a life of its own, hitting on a number of issues facing the planet. You can read about the waves cartoon here.

Graeme has lived in Hamilton, Ottawa, Toronto and London UK. He now resides in Hamilton, with his wife Wendi. They have two adult daughters attending university, Gillian and Jacqueline. He can still grill up a pretty fine steak on the barbecue, thanks to his early start in butchering as a youth.

For answers to a whole bunch of questions pertaining to editorial cartooning Graeme accumulated and posted in early 2008 check out this entry.

Click here for a translation of the above text in Ancient Graemelandian.


Please don’t hesitate to contact Graeme MacKay if you require further explanation or comments on a particular cartoon, or editorial cartooning in general. He is a strong advocate of free expression and welcomes critiques from anyone who has a bone to pick regarding any of his cartoons.

Graeme is very active on various social media platforms listed on this page. You can also get in touch with him the old fashioned way:

email
gmackay@thespec.com

Telephone & Office Address
Inactive, and the Spec’s office is now closed. Please use email to get in touch.

 


 

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5 entries.
frank frank from scarbro wrote on November 12, 2023 at 4:48 pm
graeme many thanks for allowing free use of your cartoons i'm using a few to illustrate a long rhyme about land swapping dough foe fully acknowledged of course cheers frank
graeme
many thanks for allowing free use of your cartoons
i'm using a few to illustrate a long rhyme about land swapping dough foe
fully acknowledged of course
cheers
frank... Collapse
Jason Jason wrote on March 29, 2022 at 7:35 pm
Your cartoons made my dark day much brighter. Many thanks!
Your cartoons made my dark day much brighter. Many thanks!... Collapse
Fanstasy nerd blogger Fanstasy nerd blogger from Victoria BC wrote on February 3, 2022 at 8:17 pm
Your cartoons are great. Keep up the amazing art.
Your cartoons are great. Keep up the amazing art.... Collapse
Mary Ciotti Mary Ciotti from Hamilton, Ontario wrote on January 20, 2022 at 9:31 am
Graeme, The "Brain Parts of Hamilton" is wonderful. The white print was difficult to read. Would it be possible to run it again in a larger format? Your take on politics captures a city's annoyance and frustration.
Graeme, The "Brain Parts of Hamilton" is wonderful. The white print was difficult to read. Would it be possible to run it again in a larger format? Your take on politics captures a city's annoyance and frustration.... Collapse
Katie Finneran Slattery Katie Finneran Slattery from USA wrote on January 20, 2022 at 9:30 am
Thank you! The support is much need during this tragic time for the Americans. Unity, peace, love......life. We should strive for all these as we go through our day to day duties. God Bless!
Thank you! The support is much need during this tragic time for the Americans. Unity, peace, love......life. We should strive for all these as we go through our day to day duties. God Bless!... Collapse

 


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