Rod Emmerson did his homework before he took up his job as cartoonist with the New Zealand Heraldin 2003.
Kiwis and Australians can be like blood brothers, but he says the New Zealand population is more diverse and that means he has to keep a watch on his own preconceptions. He learned that early on with a controversial cartoon about Maoris and violence against children, during a legislative push against smacking.
It caused an uproar, to the point where it became a problem for the paper. But as it turned out the furore was resolved in his favour. An influential Maori elder stepped in and said Emmerson’s work may have prevented a child being assaulted and that it opened up a valuable debate.
Journos and media execs have been crisscrossing the Tasman for years. Kiwi cartoonists including The Sydney Morning Herald’s Alan Moir are household names. But Emmerson is a rare beast – an Aussie cartoonist who has moved here.
He had worked out of provincial Rockhampton drawing for APN daily papers in Queensland while selling images to non-competing titles in Australia, the US and Europe. He was poached by APN’s New Zealand Herald.
Read the full article at Mediaweek