Is it Friday again? Wow! The days are just flying by! Today, Remembering Cartoonist John Callahan on his Birthday, (February 5, 1951 – July 24, 2010). You probably know that John Callahan held little sacred in his artistic work. His black comedy generally dealt with the shocking, the obscene, and the generally taboo. His drawing style may have been a little on the crude side, but that could be forgiven, due to the fact that he was a quadriplegic, who had just some small ability to move one arm to draw with. After a tragic car accident, Callahan was rendered a quadriplegic at the age of twenty-one. At first bitter about this turn in his life, he decided to vent his feelings through his art. His collections of cartoons including Digesting the Child Within; Do What He Says, He's Crazy, Do Not Disturb Any Further, as well as a children's book(free of his typically dark humor) The King of Things and the Cranberry Clown.
John unfortunately passed in 2010 due to complications of quadriplegia and respiratory problems. He was 59 years old..
A biographical film, Don't Worry, He Won't Get Far on Foot, starring Joaquin Phoenix, Rooney Mara, Jack Black, and Jonah Hill and directed by Gus Van Sant, and based on Callahan's memoir of the same name, was released in 2018.
We had the chance to visit John in his Portland, Oregon home and make this portrait, for My Artist Within Project. A truly funny guy!
Happy Birthday John!
art © John Callahan