13 Jun Portrait of the Week | Jason Chatfield and Ginger Meggs | Melbourne Portrait Photography
Jason is a comedian. He’s doing the rounds and has had a few comedy festival shows. Now, if you are wondering about the glamorous life of a comedian, here is a little bit of real world behind the scenes info… Most young comedians have day jobs. I know, hard to believe you just done’ one day decided you are funny and are gleefully employed doing the funnies on stage full time. I love finding out that a young comedian is a full timer but also to find out what they actually do.
Jason answered that he was a cartoonist. A guy with two creative jobs… recipe for financial trouble I was thinking. Then he told me he draws a little comic called Ginger Meggs. Yes, that Ginger Meggs.
His story is amazing, growing up in small town Western Australia, discovering his love of drawing, moving to Perth, being obsesed with cartooning, doing a book review on Ginger Meggs, falling in love with Ginger Meggs, getting fired from multiple jobs because he would spend all night cartooning, discovering the Australian Cartoonist Association, meeting a guy called James Kemsley who happened to be the current Ginger Meggs cartoonist, getting a cartoonist job at a small paper in Fremantle, having Kemsley turn into his mentor and then after many years of friendship, Jason was asked by a sick Kemsley if he would take over the strip. He would provide training in all things including the business side. Jason said yes and unfortunately Kemsley passed away before any training could happen.
Being only 23 and being given a icon to look after would be so daunting. Jason has now been behind Meggsie for 5 years and taken things to a new level with apps, ebooks and modernising the strip. Plus add onto his achievements that he became President of the Australian Cartoonist Association and hosting the Reuben Awards in the USA (the Oscars of cartooning).
He’s doing pretty awesome and a really nice guy too.