Galway Cartoon Festival Interview: Kathryn Lamb

This month Galway Cartoon Festival talks to cartoonist Kathryn Lamb Name: Kathryn Lamb Where are you from? I was born in Bahrain (my father was a Middle East expert in the Foreign Office), and I grew up in Abu Dhabi and Kuwait. My father is Welsh, from Swansea. When did you become interested in drawing cartoons? I remember drawing in chalk on the pavement (back in home leave in England) when I was about six, getting in trouble, and having to wash it off. Who are your big influences? I copied characters from the Peanuts strip by Charles Schultz. I adored Ronald Searle’s drawings. Also Arthur Rackham’s illustrations and those by Tove Jansson in the Moomintroll books. Where were you first published? I I drew cartoons for the Cherwell newspaper while reading English at Oxford, and had my first cartoon published in Private Eye in May 1979. What’s your favourite cartoon (single panel or strip)? I love Ronald Searle’s series of ‘Revolting Cats’ drawings – the one that stood out for me was captioned ‘Particularly Revolting Cat Startled by a Gesture of Affection’. What materials do you use? I use Staedtler fine liners, an A5 pad (although currently using the lovely book of paper from the Galway Cartoon Festival!), and occasionally a set of unremarkable colouring pencils. I work on my lap, which is not recommended for posture, but fitted in well with family life (single parent of six children – now grown up). On a scale from 1-10, where 1 is the thing you hang wet clothes on and 10 is the thing Gandalf rode in on, how are you at drawing horses? I’d give myself a strong 4 (one point for each leg). Did you scribble in the margins of your books in school? Not just in the margins but all over the books. And on one unforgettable occasion, all over the walls of the male teachers’ cloakroom. I left the school shortly after this. Do you have any advice for aspiring cartoonists? Don’t give up! Where can we find you online? My work can be viewed online at the Chris Beetles Gallery. [Galway Cartoon Festival kicks off tomorrow in Galway City, Inis Oírr and online. See full programme of exhibitions and events here!]

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