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Blaine, MacDonald Blaine (1937 – 2012)

Blaine original cartoon artwork

Blaine was a Canadian political cartoonist who was strongly influenced by the Toronto Star cartoonist Duncan Macpherson. Fellow cartoonist Roy Carless once described Blaine as “probably the most brilliant caricaturist that I ever met. A lot of artists were jealous of him.” Other Blaine admirers included Pierre Trudeau, who wrote to Blaine saying: “I am not sure whether it is more foolhardy for a politician to praise the work of a cartoonist, or to refuse to do so — particularly when the cartoonist holds a black belt in karate. In any case, I freely admit to enjoying your drawings, both the lifelike pencil portraits and the imaginative political caricatures. Keep that pencil sharpened. My fellow politicians and I will keep you well supplied with material.” Trudeau was one of the cartoonist’s favourite subjects and Blaine won a National Newspaper Award by depicting him putting his middle finger into a light socket with one hand and holding an illuminated light bulb with the other. The caption: Finger Power. Blaine’s wife, Ildiko Horvath, said Blaine was “a very hard worker. Sometimes he would get an idea and draw it and later on think of something else. He’d tear it up and start again and he would come home at 10 o’clock or 11 o’clock when he was finally finished.” For his editorial cartooning, Blaine received National Newspaper Awards, a Reuben Award and a Salon of Cartoons Grand Prize.