Russmo’s one of those rare breeds who values his privacy; hence, he makes use of a pen name and doesn’t share every moment of his life via Facebook and Twitter.
Still, if you drop him a legitimate personal email, he’ll most likely share his real name with you.
Russmo started his cartoon career in Arizona in the late 1980’s.
These talents which were quickly put to good use by the publishers of the Mogollon Advisor and Backbone newspapers.
Ironically, one of Russmo’s first assignments as a young reporter was to interview an Arizona congressman (soon to be senator) named John McCain.
Within months McCain was one of the first targets of Russmo’s cartoons.
Later, as requests mounted for publication in other rural publications, Russmo started a small independent self-syndication service.
A few kindly readers even sent death threats.
The two-party “tunnel vision” continues today as Democrats and Republicans alike fail to recognize that the political spectrum is not a straight line.
Some of us simply don’t like big government–whether it comes from the left or right.
And that definitely includes Russmo.
In 2003, after the War on Terrorism got into full swing, Russmo did something that was unheard of at the time: Provided all his cartoons online completely free in an open source format.
While the big syndicates were busy sending lawyers after anyone who used one of their cartoons, low resolution–or web versions–of Russmo cartoons were available to anyone with the click of a button.
Meanwhile Russmo earned his living selling high-res copies to print publishers who elected to pay for print-quality originals.
In 2007 Russmo’s cartooning career came to an abrupt halt when he was almost killed in a plane crash.
The long road of recovery meant years of physical therapy, follow-up surgeries and pain managment… and little time for cartooning.
During this time an archive or Russmo cartoons was still maintained at Russmo.com. And requests for high-res art of some of the more “timeless” cartoons continued month after month.
Only a handful of new cartoons were completed during these “dark” years; however, in 2016 Russmo began cartooning again.
For now the goal is one cartoon a week. It’s a modest goal, but realistic when considering cartooning is now just an unpaid hobby for Russmo.
But things change. If the cartoons prove popular again, Russmo promises an increase in posts!