Darrin Bell navigates issues such as civil rights, pop culture, family, science fiction, scriptural wisdom and nihilist philosophy while often casting subjects in roles that are traditionally denied them.
Bell began his freelance editorial cartooning career in 1995 at age 20. His first sale was to the LA Times, which subsequently assigned him a cartoon every other week. He also sold his cartoons to the San Francisco Chronicle and the former ANG papers, which included the Oakland Tribune.
While he was a political science major at UC Berkeley, Bell became the editorial cartoonist for the Daily Californian. His work won several California Intercollegiate Press Association awards and an SPJ Mark of Excellence Award, and he was a two-time runner-up for the Charles M. Schulz Award as well as a runner-up for the Locher Award.
Muslim students protested Bell’s 9-11 editorial cartoon and brought him to national attention.
“Muslim-Americans were understandably fearful of being profiled and persecuted. When faced with that fear, it’s inevitable that some will grossly misinterpret a cartoon,” he says. “But you can’t let the fear of irrational reactions—or the knowledge that many will say ‘it’s too soon’ for anything other than comforting images—stop you from saying what you believe to be true. I believe it’s never ‘too soon’ for candor.” In 2019, Darrin won the Pulitzer Prize in Editorial Cartooning "for beautiful and daring editorial cartoons that took on issues affecting disenfranchised communities, calling out lies, hypocrisy and fraud in the political turmoil surrounding the Trump administration."
Bell creates two syndicated comic strips, Candorville and Rudy Park, and is a storyboard artist. He lives in Sacramento with his wife and three children.