I’m going to try to stay away from writing about media outside of the Kansas City area, but I will sometimes. This is one of those times. And so is my next post.
Erik Shveima is an LA resident, an avid reader (and subscriber!) of the Los Angeles Times, and a cartoonist, whose been drawing his own interpretations of the Times front page since January. It’s some pretty cool stuff, and the Times’ readers’ representative had a Q&A with Shveima in July.
His affinity for newspapers comes through when he speaks.
I love this quaint, old-timey news and coupon delivery system, and although I do get much of my news online like everybody else, I still enjoy the newspaper as a physical object—the smell of it, the weight of it, the inky residue left on your hands from holding it. It’s a small pleasure, but it’s the small pleasures you’ll miss the most when they’re no longer available to you. The many recent reports about the decline of American newspaper readership have got me thinking that my morning paper’s days may be numbered.
I worry that the time is not all that far off when the daily newspaper will have officially outlived its usefulness to enough of the country that it will make better financial sense for the parent companies to stop the presses forever. It feels like that sad day might very well happen in my lifetime; I imagine that my daughter will grow up knowing the newspaper only as an historical fact, like 8-track tapes.
But why does he draw? It’s his homage to newspapers. He says he can’t save newspapers.
I can, however, honor them in the manner that artists throughout history have honored those they love, admire, or are totally indifferent about but whom they are paid to honor. I’ve decided to devote a year to making the daily paper my muse