Creative Productions



Mr. Robin Heller

Mr. Robin Heller, creator of the Mukluk cartoon, has a wide variety of talents. These abilities range from playing a violin, which he has been doing since he was about twelve years old, to teaching drawing classes at Bucks County Community College.

The name "Creative Productions" is the name of Robin Heller's business. This man draws the cartoon named "Mukluk and Honisukle" which presents a humorous view of life in Alaska. But don't be fooled, Mr. Heller also can also play the violin; in fact, he goes to schools and performs on the violin for kids and also teaches kids how to draw the characters Mukluk and Honisuckle.
When I asked Robin Heller about the profits of this business, he said, " it's supposed to be a profit making business, but sometimes it feels non-profit. I think that's the way it is with free- lancing, you have some years where you make a lot of money and people you know just look at you in awe when you add up how much is that a year? In other years you make very little. Just like the most popular comic strips - the least amount of money cartoonists make will be from the newspapers."
Mr. Heller works in a studio that is located on the entire top floor of his house, but his clientele is located as far away as Fairbanks, Alaska .
The business itself is composed of only Mr. Heller. You might think that this would be fun and that you could just do whatever whenever you wanted to, but for him it does not work that way. He keeps a schedule of what is happening that week and what will be coming the following week. He keeps this schedule in three places to make sure that he will see it at some point and remember what he has going on. He is a very well organized person it seems.
Mr. Heller has had his cartoons published in book form. The process for publication is not as long as you might expect. First he draws the cartoons for the newspaper and then he selects the strips to put in the book. The only original artwork needed to do is for the cover. So he can put together a book within a weeks effort. However, if you are talking about putting a book together from scratch it may take months, and really it has taken months if you add up all the time spent on it. His books are sold when he goes to schools for the programs he does. In Alaska Robin Heller's books can be found in the stores.
To get his comic strip in the newspapers he uses direct mail. He sends around a package to let the editor sample the comic strip and he also explains a little about his background. He will also explain a little of what his comic strip is about since you can't really tell by reading four or five strips. Lastly he sends a response card to them and if they are interested in knowing more then they can respond to him. Newspapers usually like to get about six months worth of cartoons free for a test period so they can decide whether they want to carry it or not. Then, after several months of publishing the strip, the newspaper decides whether they want to carry it or not.
Robin Heller's school presentations began after attending a presentation by a folk singer at his children's school.; he went and saw the program and thought that it looked like a lot of fun. Mr. Heller started doing school programs with his fiddle. Soon a teacher suggested that he do a program with his comic strip because that would probably be a lot of fun for the kids. He continues to do both types of presentations for schools.

Cartoonist Robin Heller