I usually shy away from political flavored illustration work, but when this offer to do a MAD Magazine-style "fold-in" newspaper cover came along, I couldn't resist.
Back in 2006 right-wing Senator Rick Santorum was campaigning his way through the small towns and farming communities of central Pennsylvania, while giving less attention to the East side (Philadelphia) and the West side (Pittsburgh) of the Keystone State.
This cover of the Pittsburgh City Paper hypothesized that it's because Pennsylvania is both a "red state" (in the middle) and a "blue state" (at it's urban edges). To show this, I was hired to create an illustration of Santorum and a couple of his fictional small-town supporters which, when folded as directed, will disappear leaving only a blue map of the state.
This was a follow up to the Grand Theft Auto spoof I did for the City Paper the previous Winter, which had its own unique twist. And like that cover, I only had a couple of days to get this one right. I accepted the job on a Friday and the final art was sent off the following Monday after an early morning hailstorm of revisions.
Soon after I received an "unfolded" thank you from City Paper Art Director Lisa Cunningham, regarding the difficulty of putting this together on such short notice. You're welcome!
And just in case you've never seen one of the old MAD fold-ins, I'll leave you with one by the great Al Jaffe.