And the winners of our cartoon caption contest are …

A couple of weeks back we ran our first cartoon caption contest on Post University’s blog. We challenged you to come up with the best caption for one of my original cartoons. Here it is, for a refresher.

Cartoon contest

Well, the entries are in and deadline is up. We received almost 200 submissions. I’ve poured over them all, and have come to a decision. But before I spill the beans, I thought I’d give you a glimpse inside what went into my very sophisticated judging process.

And you thought cartooning was easy! Well, I have to tell you, this was a tough choice, but a lot of fun. As a cartoonist, you sometimes get blinders on and forget how many directions a drawing can take you. So how did I ultimately pick the winners?

First, here’s what didn’t work: Lots of captions were just too long. Almost always, the shorter the caption, the better. Second, commonality. There were handfuls of entries that pretty much said, “Remind me to buy more Post-its.” One of the hardest things in cartooning is to write a good caption, and then ignore that nagging feeling that it’s been done before. If you think it has, it probably has.

Third, there were captions that clearly weren’t coming out of the guy’s mouth. Sorry, the guy was the one who was speaking. And fourth, there were a couple of submissions that were oh-so-close, except for a word or two.

I really liked “The many faces of OCD” but I would have loved it more as “OCD has many faces.” And, “Please tell me you have pants on?” would’ve been right up there had the woman been speaking, and had there been a period at the end of the sentence instead of a question mark.

I’ve always believed the best cartoons are ones you finish in your head. The best captions don’t spell out the joke, but lead you to spell it out in your head. So, without further ado, here are the winners.

Grand prize winner: Ray Odiorne, with “All my clothes are in the wash”

First place winner: Barb White, with “Mom just doesn’t get the whole IM thing”

“All my clothes are in the wash” and “Mom just doesn’t get the whole IM thing” fit the bill perfectly and were in a photo finish ’til the end. Ultimately, I believed, “All my clothes are in the wash” was just a little more universal, considering there might be a handful of people, like some mothers, who won’t know what IM means.

So there you have it. This was fun. I hope I get to do it again.

Editor’s note: We’ve reached out to our winners to square up on their winnings. Ray is taking home:

  • A numbered, original 8.5″ x 11″ print of the cartoon with his winning caption, autographed by Dave
  • Custom T-shirt printed with the cartoon and his winning caption
  • A $25 Amazon gift card

Barb comes away with

  • An autographed copy of Dave’s latest book, “Weird Things in Small Boxes,” a collection of the best “Loose Parts” cartoons published in the past two years
  • $10 Amazon gift card

We’ll share their reaction to finding out they won. Stay tuned!

Creative Commons License
Post University cartoon by Dave Blazek is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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