Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Interview with Posy Simmonds

From The Big Picture.

Posy Simmonds, The Guardian 2004, Literary Life 2

Born in 1945 in Berkshire, Posy Simmonds drew from an early age. 

After studying at the Sorbonne and Central School - now Central St Martins - respectively, she entered the world of print journalism, working as a cartoonist for several British newspapers from the late 60's onwards. 

Often compared to the likes of Austen, Elliot and, most frequently, Thomas Hardy (upon whose work her own books are closely modelled), Posy is an astute modern satirist, combining words and visuals in her storytelling to mock and condemn the British middle-class.

Left: Sketchbook works of Gemma Bovery taking inspiration from Lady Diana.
Right: Sketchbook works of Cassandra Darke.

Her satiric wit flourished within the pages of The Guardian, with whom she has been affiliated since the early 1970's; after several published strips, the 1999 publication of Gemma Bovery, a reworking of Flaubert’s Madame Bovary, proved testimony to her observational skills. 

Simultaneously, Posy turned her talents to children’s publishing – notably her story of an ordinary, seemingly lazy cat named Fred, who leads an exciting double life.

Sketchbook studies from life.

Posy is an expert observer on the minutiae of everyday life, taking inspiration from passing conversations and phone calls overheard on public transport or in coffee shops. 

We couldn’t wait to catch up with Posy to talk more about her work, inspiration and influences - as well as a bit about her thoughts on the role of comics in society, and her hopes for the future of the industry.

Interview: Matilda Barratt in conversation with Posy Simmonds.

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