Jack Cassaday Cartoonist Cartoonist John R. Jack Cassady - Toonmaker.com

Learn to draw cartoons with the legendary cartoonist
John R. "Jack" Cassady...

Message from Jack…

I’ve always loved cartooning and nearly everything involved with it. It’s great fun!  I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t enjoy drawing or looking at cartoons, it was like magic. As a child, I quickly found that my drawings could attract attention, entertain friends and family.  It gave me good feelings when relatives and friends enjoyed my drawings.  However, teachers frequently sent me to the Principal’s office for disrupting classes. Those experiences eventually led to an appreciation for teaching. Throughout my life cartooning has steadfastly provided me with enjoyment and a unique way of communicating and entertaining.  Today it’s part of my personality and something I’m compelled to do. 


Years ago when people asked me, “How can they learn cartooning?” the question initially caught me off guard.  It was something I’ve always done.  However, after great consideration, intensive research and consultation with wizards and other professional cartoonists, I developed a stock answer.  It involved three possible solutions.  First, one could enroll in one of our nation’s fine institutions of higher education specializing in cartoon art courses.  Next, one might become an assistant and/or understudy to a professional cartoonist whose work they admire.  Finally, one could make a personal and time consuming commitment to, as they say, “learn it on their own…”
Thanks to modern technology and communications, this section of my website offers an alternative method for learning cartooning.  Now you can learn cartooning with me by enrolling in a ToonMaker.com cartooning course. 


Some of the benefits of this approach are that it combines a little of all three solutions mentioned earlier, it’s comparatively inexpensive,  it allows study from home or work,  it’s individualized and conducted at a relaxed pace.  No matter what your ultimate goal in cartooning is, you’ll find its great fun getting there with ToonMaker.com courses.

Program Overview

This program was designed to take advantage of benefits offered by personal computer technology.  In other words, you must be able to send and receive email, and as a minimum, be able to open image files.  If you have access to a scanner, that method might be used in lieu of the US Mail at times to send completed assignments to ToonMaker.com for evaluation.  You must also have a valid mailing address.

The ToonMaker.com cartooning courses are divided into a specific number of lessons.  Each lesson has a number of performance or behavioral objectives to be accomplished by the student. 

When all lessons have been successfully accomplished and goals addressed, the course is complete. Students are then ready to proceed to another course or level.  Courses are classified into three levels of difficulty, basic, intermediate and advanced.  Course costs and lengths are determined by the level and number of lessons.  For example, a basic level course consisting of twelve lessons might be finished by a student at the rate of one lesson per month over a year.   While the course could take up to a year to complete, it’s possible for some students, working at their own pace, to finish all lessons in less time.  The cost or tuition for a course like that would be $300.U.S.  Other variable personal costs associated with the program are for equipment, materials, postage and mailers, optional books, copies, etc. depending on the student’s needs and desires.  Please see Tuition, Fees and Payment.

How to Start

Interested in getting started?  First, consider your art experience and background.  Imagine what level you might enter the program. Then review and note the course offerings that match your interests. As you come up with logical questions, review the FAQ section of the website.  Many times answers to your questions will be found here.  Once you’ve taken these preliminary steps, contact Jack through email.  He’ll guide you through the process to become enrolled as an official ToonMaker.com cartooning student. Every applicant is unique. When the level you’ll enter the program is decided, full payment for your course will need to be made in order to become officially enrolled.


A logical question asked is, “At what level will I be able to start?”  The answer is,  it depends on one’s experience.  In other words, if one has absolutely no art background or experience, he or she would start at the most basic level and progress upwards in terms of difficulty and challenge.  However, a person with art and design background experience would receive advanced placement.  Advanced placement is determined by an informal interview and portfolio review process.  There is a slight one time fee for this process.

Tuition, Fees and Payment

The portfolio review process fee is a one time cost normally incurred by applicants desiring to be considered for advanced placement.  The fee for this service is $35. plus postage or shipping, if required. 

Tuition is the total course cost and must be paid in advance in order to be officially enrolled.  It is calculated by the number of lessons times the rate for the level.  The rates for the different levels are: Basic courses (Level 1)= $25., Intermediate courses (Level 2)= $35., and finally Advanced courses (Level 3)= $50. 

Normally, the number of lessons will range from ten to twelve per course. For example, a basic level 1 course consisting of 12 lessons would be $300.00, while an intermediate level 2 course consisting of 10 lessons would be $350.00 etc.  Normally one course is taken at a time in a building block approach. 

Payment may be made by using the Pay Pal on this site.

Face to face or on site instruction with Jack is possible for ToonMaker.com students. Jack periodically teaches a week long class at the world renown John C. Campbell Folk School nestled in the beautiful mountains of western NC. Individuals who have already completed a Basic Cartooning Class with Jack at the John C. Campbell Folk School are automatically entitled to advanced placement in the ToonMaker.com Cartooning Program.  Students desiring to start their ToonMaker.com Cartooning Program by first attending the Folk School class in NC should contact Jack for more information. 

For upcoming classes at the John C. Campbell Folk School,
see Jack's
teaching schedule here.

Showcase of ToonMaker.com Cartoonist’s Work

Periodically samples of ToonMaker.com student work will be selected by Jack and displayed on “Just For Fun” Gallery page of this website.  Tell the world to be on the lookout for your cartoon art!


Course Descriptions

Basic Courses (Level 1)

Courses (click link for detailed description):

Intermediate Courses (Level 2)


Advanced Courses (Level 3)



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