The art of illustrating headlines

Anna Goodson

We’ve all seen illustrations that deliver the news in a way that a headline can’t.

Though headlines might grab our attention with the latest financial crisis, the threat of war, news on climate change, technology challenging privacy, immigration, jobs, or the economy, staying current by reading the news isn’t enough.

Like you, our illustrators read the news, though for them news and world events become a starting point for a creative process.  After brainstorming, sketching and playing with all sorts of ideas, they distill their visual message until it hits the mark.

To me, there isn’t much that rivals a targeted illustration on a social issue. Take a look at Leonard Beard’s illustration on senior unemployment showing a grey-haired employee–who’s just been let go–standing precariously close to the edge of a diving board. He’s holding a cardboard box with the contents of his desk inside.

Or Joe Magee’s illustration of a kid on a bike with an algorithm superimposed on his face for an article in The Boston Globe on what impact facial recognition will have on privacy.

How about Sébastien Thibault’s illustration for Politico of a bank customer and bank employee playing a game of tug-of-war with a password on a keyboard and computer screen questioning how safe your bank data is?

Hanna Melin’s, “Volkswagon” of an executive opening a drawer with a human head inside about corporate corruption and scandal touches a deep chord. Or Alexis Bukowski’s sardonic comment on Angela Merkel waving good-bye behind a fence of stars and stripes with the EU flag flying in the background for the Spanish-language humanities newspaper, La Maleta de Portbou (The suitcase of Portbou).

Andrea Ucini’s illustration on climate change of a man dressed in raincoat, rain boots and carrying an umbrella on a clear day reminds us of how unpredictable weather has become.

Jennifer Tapias Derch’s poignant illustration about artists who receive recognition only after death for Gráffica magazine of red flowers pushing up out of a skull poses the question: “Can we do more to support artists?”

Images like these make us think; expose corruption, motivate us to question standard explanations and to investigate issues that matter to us.

We ask why children are being trained to be soldiers? Will the EU survive? Will the planet survive?  Will there be jobs for the next generation? Will our privacy be lost? Will corporate corruption go on unchecked? Can we avoid war?

We bring the news to you in our own quirky, insightful and inspired way.

We make more than just headlines here at Anna Goodson Illustration Agency, we make sense of headlines.