Saturday, May 23, 2009

Proud to be a 'StarTexan'

A recent email from a faithful follower included this:

"I really like the StarText memories. . .but did you have a chance to mention StarTexans? I loved that term."

As a matter of fact, so do I.

"StarTexan" was coined to describe a subscriber to StarText. Credit for the idea goes to Bev Kurtin, a prolific columnist and contributor in her own right. It soon became a mainstay of our marketing programs and even graced a number of T-shirts.

While the word itself was good, it really needed a picture to go with it. A mascot, if you will. And so was born ... the Starmadillo! I ask you, what could be more Texan?

The assignment to create the Starmadillo was handed to J.D. Crowe, who arrived at the Star-Telegram in 1982 fresh out of Eastern Kentucky University. J.D. had his own unique style and what he created fit perfectly with what we had in mind. So much so we prevailed on J.D. to create a whole series of images featuring the Starmadillo in a variety of poses. Who knew an armadillo could be so loveable and appealing?

In the years since, J.D. has become a celebrated editorial cartoonist, going from the Star-Telegram to the West Coast and the San Diego Union-Tribune. J.D. currently toils for the Press-Register in Mobile, Alabama, where according to the bio he posted on his website -- "J.D. lives high on the feral hog in Fairhope, Alabama with his wife Lori, their daughter Bronwen, dogs Barkley and Chocolate, and Corduroy the cat."

Learn more about J.D. and his most recent book, Smell the Love, at his website:

And here's a pix of the artist hismelf, who I'm happy to report hasn't changed a bit, including his unique slant on life and world affairs. By the way J.D., whatever happened to the little mouse who always made the scene in your drawings?