Watton cartoonists draw up charity boost

In days gone by drawing a comical caricature of the teacher might well have earned pupils a couple of whacks of the cane but the cheeky artistic endeavours of three Watton youngsters have earned them nothing but praise from their teachers.

In days gone by drawing a comical caricature of the teacher might well have earned pupils a couple of whacks of the cane but the cheeky artistic endeavours of three Watton youngsters have earned them nothing but praise from their teachers.

The drawing skills of Perry Gutteridge, James Bray and Todd Pitcher have not only added a little colour to life at Watton Junior School but the boys are also helping children less well off than themselves into the bargain.

The 10-year-olds are doing a roaring trade selling drawings of their classmates and teachers inspired by the hit American cartoon South Park.

The caricatures, which are drawn to commission, sell for between 30p and 70p a time and all profits are given to the children's charity Barnardos.


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When the youngsters initially put the idea for their business to head teacher Pat Whitty he immediately encouraged them and requested a business plan before allowing them to trade on school property to raise charity funds.

He said: “One of the things that we are encouraged to do as a school is get the children involved in enterprise and these three are applying what they have learned.

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“The children here are very good at raising money for charity and this is a good example of that.

“The drawings have gone down very well and the children love them.

“The boy's class teacher even has the picture they did of her on her classroom door.”

For the talented trio creating the images is a labour of love and with demand increasing by the day they are spend most of their evenings putting pen to paper.

Perry said: “We all think we are good at drawing so we thought we would put it to good use.

“It is all done in a South Park style and people think they are really great

“We either just a likeness of the person or we can put a background on which shows a scene about something they do.”

Depending on what is required the drawings can take anywhere between 15 minutes and three quarters of an hour.

Perry's mum, Susan Gutteridge, said: “I am amazed at how quickly they do it.

“They are very popular and he is always coming home with his pockets weighed down with change from having sold out.

“I don't know where he gets is artistic ability from, it is certainly not me, but he really enjoys it and spend every evening doing it.”

And though it is early days for the fledgling business all three already have their sights firmly set on a career in animation.

James, the group's appointed treasurer who keeps a critical eye on the finances, said: “All three of us are hoping to become animators and we all work on making our own characters up in our spare time.

“All of us see things as we are going around and think to ourselves that that would be a really good character.”

With all the boy's signing their drawings Todd said he hoped they might be worth far more than 30p in the future as the first published work world renowned cartoonists.

But for now the trio have their sights set on a far more achievable goal.

They hope their enterprise will net them at least £100 for Barnardos before they have satisfied demand and trade at school dries up.

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