WHEN the Rocky Mountain News stopped its presses for the last time in 2009, setting a good many talented people adrift, the newspapers editorial cartoonist was one of the lucky few who managed to land on his feet.
Ed Stein, who drew the cartoons on the Rockys editorial page, and for years had also created a homey and localized one-panel called Denver Square, had something called national syndication in his corner.
In addition to his home base at the News, Steins editorial cartoons appeared in several hundred newspapers across the country.
I saw it coming, he says of the newspapers demise, so I took Denver Square, repurposed it as Freshly Squeezed and syndicated it. So I made the transition economically.
But in terms of inspiration, he admits, not so much.
While his work continued to sell and reach the public, Stein missed the local angle that had always been the heart of his work.
I did editorial cartooning for several years after the Rocky Mountain News went away, he says, but I reached the point where, without having a local audience, my work lacked the kind of zip I wanted it to have.
He also found it difficult to work outside the frenzied newsroom environment he had always loved.
I loved the newsroom, Stein says, and Ill always miss working for a newspaper. Theres nothing like having that platform. The size of readership that it affords is really a wonderful thing for a cartoonist.