Bell has 24 years of editorial cartooning experience. He started drawing editorial cartoons at the Daily Californian at University of California, Berkeley and sold freelance editorials at age 19 to the Los Angeles Times and San Francisco Chronicle. He also freelanced regularly for the Oakland Tribune and other Bay Area News Group newspapers and is an occasional contributor to The New Yorker Magazine.
Bell most recently was syndicated by the Washington Post Writers Group. He won the 2016 Berryman Award for editorial cartooning and is a two-time runner-up for the Charles M. Schulz Award, a runner-up for the Locher Award and a 2015 recipient of the Robert F. Kennedy Awards for Excellence in Journalism.
Bell’s editorial cartoons address social, political and cultural issues, touching on civil rights, pop culture, politics, family, science fiction, spirituality and philosophy. He also creates two syndicated comic strips, “Candorville” and “Rudy Park,” and is a storyboard artist.
Bell said he wants his editorial cartoons to add to the national discussion and promote “the exchange of inconvenient ideas.” Political cartoons contribute to the visual storytelling of our complex and dynamic culture.
“In 1791, a free black man named Benjamin Banneker wrote to Thomas Jefferson to force him to acknowledge that he and the nation he helped create were falling far short of the principles they professed. We’ve been writing that same letter, addressed to ‘The Conscience of the United States,’ ever since,” said Bell. “Sometimes in prose, sometimes in poetry, sometimes in song or dance, sometimes in film, sometimes in graffiti. And sometimes, in cartoons.
“At times, the letter is about social justice. At others, it’s about economic inequality or about unequal application of law and order, or about our treatment of the environment, or about matters of war and peace, or a thousand other subjects. At times, the letter is one of hope. At other times it’s amusement, or frustration, or indignation or sorrow. But always, the letter is an appeal to fairness, to humanity, to justice, to intellectual honesty, and to the importance of the exchange of inconvenient ideas.
“My goal is to add my signature to that letter, to contribute to the long national discussion, and to make people laugh, cry, or feel enough that they’re willing to entertain or even appreciate ideas they might normally refuse or neglect to consider,” Bell said.
Bell’s cartoons will be sold separately as well as in the political cartoon package, which offers a selection of the best editorial cartoons of the day. Bell joins award-winning cartoonists John Branch, Mike Shelton, David Hitch, Mike Smith, Lee Judge, Jimmy Margulies, Kirk Walters, Brian Duffy, Ed Gamble and Mike Peters. The package offers an exceptional balance of liberal, middle-of-the-road and conservative perspectives.