I traveled to Istanbul in 1993, an attractive and very blessed trip!
Blessed to be able to interview the great masters of Turkish cartoon who are no longer alive.
Two of the greatest of these cartoonists were Turhan Selçuk and Semih Balcıoğlu.
I am trying to publish for you useful parts of the long interviews I have had with these masters.
Well, I was somewhat familiar with Master Turhan because of the article that Mrs. Irandokht Mohasses (R.I.P.) wrote in Tamasha magazine, but I did not imagine that one day I would see this great Turkish artist up close.
In Istanbul, I learned that Turhan Selçuk was not sociable, and rarely accepted anyone.So I joined Semih Balcıoğlu (a friend for several decades with Turhan) and in fairness, Semih Balcıoğlu did the right thing. And by phone I was able to specify a time to meet at the house of Turhan Selçuk.
Turhan Selçuk lived on the second floor of a very stylish apartment, the whole space of his house was full of many paintings and cartoons, which were often his own works.
But now, in order not to prolong my article, I intend to separate the recommendations of this great artist from the heart of my interview.
"It is natural that all artists are impressed, and the beginning of their work is certainly the result of this," said Turhan. "But these things are raw, the cartoonist's task is to find his own world".
"A world in which he can express his views.Most good cartoonists usually have their own style. Those who have not yet achieved this are more involved in the form and their work reduces the content and Ideas.At the beginning of my career, I did my best to make my drawings have a special character, so when I compare my work, I can not tell the difference between their style (between new and old cartoons), although my works was very full of lines".
"And that upset me. It wasn't until the 1950s that I was influenced by Western cartoonists.I saw that everyone has their own style. So I decided that what I really needed to do was learn how to do it right. I have been working in this field ever since, and of course it took me a long time for my work to be fine and I found my style".
"With all this, I still feel like an amateur, and when I see the cartoons of the day before in the newspaper, I want to find my mistakes, and I often say that I wish I had drawn it like this, and for example, if it was here, it would have been much better".
"The next thing is to study a lot (both written and visual), and do a lot of research.Follow the cartoons of the world closely. Pay special attention to drawing and work and work constantly. Participate in world competitions, because there is a sense of competition".
"And if man is left alone in his environment, he will not make progress, he must work to complete his international level".
Footnote: Well, I think this amount of content is enough for a short interview, I think review the content once again, I think it is very important!
Massoud Shojaei Tabatabai
Click here to see the Cartoons of Master Turhan.