Based in: Brisbane, QLD, Australia
About Swamp: Swamp is an international, award winning comic strip created by Queensland's Gary Clark.
Set in a marsh, it is a funny down-to-earth look at a simple society bewildered by an increasingly complex world. The strip is home to a collection of misfit characters; Ding the duck who after 4,592 flying lessons still can't fly; Wart and Mort the whimsical, wise cracking frogs; Cheese and Chives the easy living, contented dump rats; Old Man Croc with lots of attitude but no teeth and his pesky Nit Picker Bird companion, among others. These leading players spend their lives surfing the sludge pipe, dodging the dump and surviving the toxic waste while giving unlikely photo opportunities to the hapless tourists on the Swamp Tours Boat. Their spin on life is sometimes slapstick, sometimes sophisticated, but always has a refreshing optimism that has endeared them to millions of readers.
Biography: Queensland cartoonist Gary Clark could only dream when his humorous comic strip Swamp was first published in 1981 that decades later it would be reaching over three and a half million Australians every day. It is published in capital city dailies, regional daily and Sunday newspapers and magazines across the country, but that's only half the story as it has also steadily grown in popularity on both sides of the globe..
Brisbane born Gary spent his childhood playing in the creeks and ponds near his suburban home.
His childhood adventures in and around this muddy playground full of wildlife, sights and smells was to become the inspiration for his cartoon strip SWAMP.
Inspired to draw as a child by sitting on his father's lap and watching him sketch, Gary was about 4 years old when his father's drawing of aircraft and hangers also began his interest in aircraft and aviation. This led him to become a licensed pilot and also to create Ding the flying-student duck.
Gary developed his cartoon skills in Primary and High School drawing cartoons to amuse friends. After completing high School Gary entered Art School and commenced a three year course in commercial illustration. Although cartooning was not taught at Art school Gary turned every possible assignment into a cartooning assignment and soon gained the reputation of being the resident cartoonist. It was during these years that he was inspired to one day create a cartoon strip and pursue this as a full time career. After graduation Gary worked as an artist in the advertising industry working. In 1974 during a lunch break while working as a layout artist, he developed the beginnings of a cartoon strip based on happy childhood memories of marshy places and wildlife - though several years went by before it was developed enough to sell.
Gary broke into full time cartooning in 1978 for a national trucking magazine, resulting in two comic editions of his "Trucktoons" successfully published. However, it was in 1981 that his wife of one year sold "The Swamp" strip to its first newspaper.
Today Swamp continues appears in many capital city daily and Sunday newspapers throughout Australia and Scandinavia .and In addition to the cartoon strip, 24 Swamp Cartoon Albums have been published. Swamp cartoons are also regularly published in educational textbooks and in a wide variety of Government , Industry and conservation publications.
His wife, Yvonne, and son, Scott, continue to provide much of the support and inspiration that makes Swamp what it is.
11 ACA Best Comic Strip Stanley Awards,
12 Coffs Harbour Rotary cartoon awards ( 4 Winner and 8 Merit )
Do you have any merchandise for sale? Books and merchandise of all types are available through my website's Store.
Professional Associations you are a Member of? I am a Member of the Australian Cartoonists' Association (ACA)
Do you do commission work? Selectively. Swamp is my full time occupation and keeping ahead of deadlines doesn’t leave time to do much else. But when an interesting commission comes my way I am happy to consider it. I recently created storyboards and key drawings for animations for a recent Cinema released Documentary about the impact of legislation on the Australian Fishing Industry.
The Documentary is called “Drawing The Line.”
Any other info you want to share? I’m currently working on a series of Swamp digital albums for release initially ipad and iphone then Anroid. Release date is Mid December 2013.