Persuasive Art highlights the efforts of editorial cartoonists as they communicate their views. We look at dozens of cartoons every day from around the world and then invite a cartoonist to answer three questions about the creative process: what sparked the idea for this cartoon, how the concept evolved, and why it worked.

-- Howard Finberg & Sara Quinn

How did your idea begin? What sparked the idea?

I was trying really hard not to do a "weather" cartoon, which in editorial cartoonist parlance is a pejorative term. But the incessant rain of the last few weeks [Matt lives in the Northeast] was too depressing to ignore, and with the simultaneous confluence of dishonesty among leaders and icons, the message being that success is predicated upon lying, I couldn't ignore the miserable parallel.

A project in conjunction with the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists

Did the original concept change as you developed it?

Yes. It started off as a sort of weather forecast graphic which left me feeling a little flat. I didn't think the idea was strong enough, so I decided I needed to do a really grey, wet-looking illustration in order to evoke the dank mood of the last few weeks and salvage any hope of the cartoon working.

From your point of view, what works best about this cartoon?

I think it makes the best of an OK idea and I probably wouldn't change anything. The best part is, the cartoon was drawn on a Friday for publication on Sunday, and it rained all weekend (plus the culture of deceit didn't go anywhere either), so it held up pretty well.

About the creator:
Name: Matt Davies
Publication:The Journal News (Westchester, N.Y.)
Brief bio information:. 36 years old. Born in London, England;  editorial cartoonist at The Journal News since 1993; syndicated since 1994, currently with Tribune Media Services.
Link to paper’s website or personal website: