Stephen Kroninger
Election 2016

news item: Pope suggests Trump 'is not Christian'

news item: If Republicans block Obama's Supreme Court nomination, he wins anyway

news item: Race Goes to South Carolina


news item: Bush campaigns with mom in New Hampshire

Ted Cruz

Marco Rubio
I've been posting these recent images to my Facebook page and Tumblr. My wife believes I should seek a wider forum. I was inspired to do these by the great New York Times columnist Charles M. Blow who has been posting his unfiltered views of the election via Facebook videos. I thought, "that's a very good idea." Rubio was the first. I did this one the morning after his disatrous debate in New Hampshire and the others just seemed to have flowed from there.
Bernie Sanders

2776: Comedy Album!

Patton Oswalt, Aubrey Plaza, Eugene Mirman, Ira Glass, Will Forte, Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, Aimee Mann and 80 other comics, musicians and actors join forces for the new album 2776. 26 visual artists from around the world have created unique covers for each of the tracks on the album. 2776 is available on iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and CDBaby.
It's all to benefit the charity One Kid One World, which builds schools in impoverished parts of Kenya and El Salvador.
SEE! More art from a wide variety of artists and illustrators

New York Dolls

New York Dolls.

Johnny Thunders

David Johansen

Jerry Nolan

Sylvain Sylvain

Arthur "Killer" Kane

 I first heard New York Dolls when I was fifteen or sixteen years old. A girl in one of my high school art classes bought their first album based on the cover photo (above). She was a Bowie fan and thought the Dolls would be something similar. They weren't. She hated them and passed the record on to me. The Dolls have been a favorite of mine ever since.
reference photos

more reference photos. all photos © Dennis Recla and collected at Johnny Thunders Cyber Lounge

A few of the many Dolls videos on Youtube that were also used as reference.

Also of great assistance was Bob Gruen's book New York Dolls: Photographs
 I like to work to music. Here's a partial list of what I was listening to for this piece. New York Dolls (debut album, Too Much too Soon, From Paris With Love, A Hard Night's Day, Lipstick Killers, Songs the Dolls Taught Us...) Johnny Thunders (LAMF, So Alone, DTK, Max's, In Cold Blood, Copy Cats, Que Sera Sera...) David Johansen (David Johansen Group Live, Live it Up, solo albums...) Sylvain Sylvain (solo albums) Jerry Nolan (Take a Chance With Me/Pretty Baby--single).
 If you were to have just one Dolls cd in your collection it's A Hard Night's Day, a collection of demos from 1973. If you're looking for two I recommend From Paris With Love. In fact, get both. You'll thank me later.

Anelle Miller

 It was Anelle Miller's birthday the other day. I was going to bake her a cake until I remembered that I don't know the first thing about baking a cake. I made her this collage instead. I thought I'd share it with her many admirers on Drawger. Happy Birthday, Anelle!
4 Quarterbacks

Russell Wilson---Seattle Seahawks
 Please forgiv my indulgence in posting this so close to my previous one. These won't be quite so relevant after Sunday when only two of these quarterbacks will remain standing and headed for the Super Bowl in the Meadowlands.
 I'm not sure what inspired me to creat these four collage of the remaining four quartrbacks in the NFL playoffs. I had the tv on this weekend while working on another project and somehow the idea popped into my head that I'd like to make a collage of Seattle's Russell Wilson. As I began working on that I thought I might continue on do the winning QBs of the three other games as well. I had to wait on each. As I was working I was reminded of my high school days and how I probably saved myself from being tortured by the student athletes as friends later related horror stiries of their run ins with the "jocks." I used to attend the High School football games to hang out with friends on a friday night. The team was the Parkland Trojans. One Sunday I was sitting in my room and decided to make a cartoon the school mascot tearing apart or beating up on the next opponent's school mascot. One of the football players was in my art class.I gave him the drawing. He liked it and was quite effusive in his praise. Each week I'd draw him another. One week I skipped. He came up to me and asked for the drawing. I told him I didn't do one for this week. He seemed downcast. Unthreatingly, he seemed sincerely disappointed, He told me he was hanging them up in the locker room and the team was using them in their preparation for that week's contest. From then on I never missed a week. It wasn't until years later after hearing artist friends relate their tragic tales of run-ins with the jocks that those drawings must of acted as some sort of unwitting protection money. I never had my head bashed into a locker, never pantsed and was treated with nothing but respect from the athletically inclined members of the student body.

Tom Brady---New England Patriots

Peyton Manning---Denver Broncos

Colin Kaepernick---San Francisco 49ers

 There's much excitement in the Kroninger household for the return of SHERLOCK on PBS, January 19. Back in November, our daughter Rachel asked me to create a collage caricature of its star Benedict Cumberbatch as one of her Hanukkah gifts. I finally finished the piece earlier this month.
 The kids, both of them, have been Sherlock Holmes fans for many years going back to their having read the Sir Arthur Conan Doyle stories to the 1980s BBC series featuring Jeremy Brett1980s BBC series with Jeremy Brett to Peter Cushing in The Hound of the Baskervilles to Billy Wilder' The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes and beyond. In eighth grade they were cast as Holmes (Rachel) and Watson (Hannah) for the school play. They're currently reading Maria Konnikova's Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes. Yeah, There's much excitement in the Kroninger household for the third season of SHERLOCK on PBS.

 After seeing Sherlock Holmes completed our other daughter, Hannah, said, "Now you have to do John!" Dr. John Watson is portrayed by Martin Freeman in the current series.

Colbert & Stewart

Stephen Colbert and John Stewart for THE BAFFLER, art directed by Patrick Flynn. I've been working with Patrick since the beginning of time and it's always been a great pleasure. Patrick was among the first art directors to publish one of my collages and for that I am forever grateful. He's also been a great friend over the years, not only to myself but to the vast network of artists he's worked with, supported, encouraged and published over the years. The list of those is a veritable Hall of Fame of contemporary illustration in itself and it just keeps on growing. Many of those got their start with him.

I like my own caricatures unadorned, sans visual props. In this case the Baffler wanted Stewart and Colbert to be depicted as circus clowns, to which I dutifully obliged, but my heart belongs to the pure caricature. There is no preconception as to how the final piece wil look, no sketches. I begin slicing up bits of magazines and repostioning the pieces, the shapes, until a likeness appears. Years ago I was working with Andrea Dunham, now an art director at PEOPLE, on caricatures of John Travolta and Uma Thurma from PULP FICTION (to let you know how long ago it was). While moving pieces around I couldn't decide if it was finished or not. Andrea looked over my shoulder and said, "you don't even know when you're good" meaning I was finished. Now whenever I ask myself if a piece is finished I hear Andrea's voice and those words in my head. It was no different with Colbert and Stewart.  After completing the cut-outs the heads are then scanned into photoshop where the rest of the composition is completed.
  These are the finished pieces as published.


  The politics as circus metaphor has been around a long time. I would guess that's it's pretty unlikely that an election cycle goes by at any time anywhere in the world without someone employing it. Here's a favorite by Erich Schilling from a 1927 edition of Simplicissimus. Unfortunately, Schilling changed his views about Hitler after the Nazis gained power in the thirties. He became a fervent supporter of the new regime and continued to work for Simplicissimus after it became a National Socialist propaganda organ. Schilling committed suicide in his Munich studio when the Third Reich collapsed in 1945. 

My Kim Jong-il

 For Andree Kahlmorgan at TIME magazine
Bob Newman's Top 5

 CoverJunkie is a site dedicated to celebrating magazine covers. They recently began a new series entitled "great art directors about their favorite covers." It asks a prominent art director to name five favorite covers from their career as well as five favorite covers they "wish they'd designed themselves." Robert Newman is first up. I was thrilled to see that he selected a cover we'd done together back in '93 as his personal number one favorite. Bob has always been incredibly supportive of my work going back to my earliest days as an illustrator. The key to Bob is that he has complete faith in the illustrators and photographers he hires. He designs with an encouraging hand rather than an iron fist. He's also incredibly knowlegable about the history of magazine, book and newspaper design. The results speak for themselves. I know that I may have had a very different career had we never met.

Original Art: Rudy's mouth in this image is actually Whitney Houston's.
Mark Twain
 Not to be left out of the fun, a recent Mark Twain for a children's magazine.
Obama & Google
 For Deanna Lowe at FORTUNE. Deanna was great to work with and this was truly a collaboration.

In the beginning was the caricature. This is a cut-out----scissors, museum board and glue. The rest of the peice was done in photo-shop. I knew Obama was to be in love and the mouth wouldn't fly in the long run but at this point I just wanted to have the likeness approved. The mouth is from a photo of a woman lying on her side. The top "lip" is her arm, the lower "lip" her abdomen where her arm was resting. The middle part is the space in between. It's one piece.

 An early take. The turnaround on this was quick. Deana felt the President should be showing more love than depicted here.

The follow-up piece that became the final. It took repeated listenings to "Tammy" to set the right mood.

Too much love.

Utne: Bill O'Reilly
 This is the cover for the current issue of Utne Reader. Art directed by Stephanie Glaros. I enjoyed the back and forth over the phone. The above doodles were done during our first conversation. Below is the finish.

 Whenever I use a full on image of the sole of a shoe I've got this drawing by George Grosz in mind. I've referenced it from time to time over the years. I love the disconnected ankle feel of the foot as it seems to wobble freely at the end of the man's leg. One can almost hear it flop as it hits the pavement with the next step. I keep a separate file containing only photos of shoe soles with this drawing as the inspiration.

MJ Drawger Show/Japan
from the current issue of Japan's ILLUSTRATION magazine: "Once the news of Michael Jackson's death was announced, the illustrations show of him got started. It is like the guerilla exhibit of Michael spreading in a really fast pace. Stephen Kroninger is behind this Drawger show of Jackson illustation. Now there are more than 80 illustrators participating.

One of the participating artists Kyle T. Webster said, "If you are an illustrator, you must have drawn Michael Jackson at least once."

Michael is the king of illustration as well."

a very special thanks to Yuko Shimizu for scanning the page, sending me the page and for providing the english translation.

I originally thought the Michael Jackson Drawger Show would top out at about twenty images. The hundred and twentieth image was posted today.

The Michael Jackson Drawger Show
Observer Culture
This is the back page of the current edition of the New York Observer. The art director is Nancy Butkus.

 From the Brian Wilson school of illustration, this was done in modules and then pieced together. The turnaround was quick. One day. Fortunately, Nancy trusted me to make it up. It's for a story on the ALL POINTS WEST FESTIVAL on Liberty Island.

 The first image was Ian McCulloch of Echo and the Bunnymen.

THe second was Jay-Z. These are all cut-outs. I prefer doing caricatures as cut-outs and not in photo-shop.

The Lady in the Harbor.

Piece it together in photo-shop and just add water.

More Observer Caricatures
Peter Kaplan, former editor of The New York Observer. I like to work to music. This was done to Cecilia Bartoli's 1992 Mozart Arias cd.

I'm including this photo of Peter since i'm assuming that most of you have no idea what he looks like. Although some of you may recall him from Drew Friedman's brilliant caricature.
 Walt Whitman.

 The Observer shut down the calendar so these are the last two. Nice ending on Walt Whitman though. It was a fun gig and Nancy Butkus is a joy to work with.

More Observer Caricatures
Liza Minnelli---It's Italian, blame it on Poppa, what can I do? I often like to art to the sounds of the musician being depicted. This was done to Liza's recording of Cole Porter's "Looking At You" played over and over and over.

Full Disclosure: I attended a performance by Liza Minnelli at the Allentown Fairgrounds the night President Nixon announced his resignation. What good is sitting alone in your room?

David Byrne. I've been a huge fan of Byrne's work for many years. I have all of the Talking Heads albums, FEAR OF MUSIC being the my favorite but they've all gotten plenty of spins over the years. His collaboration with Brian Eno, MY LIFE IN THE BUSH OF GHOSTS was very influential in the development of my work. I'm also grateful to Byrne for taking a chance on me early in my career. He and Frank Olinsky of Manhattan Design selected me to illustrate PSYCHO KILLER for the book WHAT THE SONGS LOOK LIKE: CONTEMPORARY ARTISTS INTERPRET TALKING HEADS SONGS. The book included work by Robert Rauschenberg, Gary Panter, Sue Coe, Jim Nutt, Keith Haring, Jenny Holzer, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Roz Chast, Barbara Kruger, Tadanoori Yokoo, Edward Ruscha, Victor Moscoso, William Wegamn among many others. Pretty heady stuff for a green kid pretty much fresh from the sticks. I've also followed Byrne's post-heads career as well. He's created a fantastic and inspiring body of work. This piece was done to Byrne and Eno's latest collaboration EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENS WILL HAPPEN TODAY.
The President of the United States.

Alec Baldwin

Latest Observer Caricatures
 Recent caricatures for the New York Observer Calendar. the art director is Nancy Butkus. Nancy genenrally sends me a few names and allows me to chose who I want to do for the week. These are cut-outs, meaning scissors, magazines and glue. Up top is the Easter Bunny.

Donna Karan

Gwyneth Paltrow practicing Yoga
Rachel Maddow

NY Observer Caricatures
I don't consider myself a natural caricaturist like Philip Burke, Steve Brodner, David Levine, Miguel Covarrubias etc. I have to work at it. Collage is the perfect medium for me. If a likeness doesn't come on the first pass I can keep cutting and moving things around until I get close. In that way, collage is something akin to painting in oils. Recently I began creating weekly caricatures for the calendar section of the New York Observer with Art Director Nancy Butkus. Here are the latest.
John Updike
Tinsley Mortimer: I have no idea who this woman is. From what I could gather in researching her photo, she's a rich girl who goes out and gets photographed a lot. I could be wrong and someone out there may have more info.
Britney Spears Circus Tour
Sir Paul McCartney
Recent Caricatures for The New York Observer
Bruce Springsteen
 A few more caricatures for Nancy Butkus at the Observer. These are all scissors, magazines and glue. No photoshopping.
Martin Scorsese
Jay McInerney
Anna Wintour
Liz Smith
Billy Joel
Patti Smith for the New York Observer
This was for Nancy Butkus at the New York Observer. Patti Smith. Made this while listening to a lot of Patti Smith music. I hope the final image reflects that.
Two Caricatures for the New York Observer
Joan Rivers
 For Nancy Butkus at The New York Observer. These were for the Calendar section. Joan Rivers and Salvador Dali. I generally prefer to do caricatures as cut-outs and not digitally. It allows for more playfulness. Nancy's been great to work with.
Salvador Dali and chicken
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