Three Rivers Festival's Junk Food Alley and Elephant Ears Cartoon

It's that time of the year again in Fort Wayne Indiana. The middle of July brings all kinds of people downtown to celebrate the Three Rivers Festival. Concerts, competitions, amusement rides and of course, the famous Junk Food Alley!

Although, I think that they may no longer call it Junk Food Alley because of the negative connotations associated with the term, "junk food".

Maybe they need a new, politically correct name such as, Marginally Nutritious Sustenance Corridor. Man, I missed my calling! I really should've gone into marketing.

Anyhow, of my favorite marginally nutritious treats has to be the classic elephant ear. If you've never had one, give it a try. Just be sure to bring a permission slip from your cardiologist! I hope you enjoy my elephant ear cartoon that first appeared in Fort Wayne Magazine a few years ago.

Three Rivers Festival Elephant Ears Cartoon

Ho Ho Ho! It's A Cartoon About Downtown Fort Wayne Christmas Past.

Wolf and Dessauer Christmas Window Cartoon

It's said that writers write what they know. Well, the same can be said for cartoonists. Cartoonists cartoon what they know. I know about downtown Fort Wayne because I spent countless hours there for different reasons, at different times in my life. 

One of the most memorable times was that period of time in the '60s (when I was minus ten years old). Seriously, that period of time was magical. The big department stores, restaurants, specialty, shoe, music and almost any kind of business you can think of. I've often said Fort Wayne was like a miniature New York.

Many times throughout my childhood, my mom would round up my sister and me, to walk to the corner and hop on the bus to travel downtown. Getting off at the corner of Calhoun and Wayne, one of our first stops would be to go into Murphy's to grab lunch or a box of delicious doughnuts. Next, we'd go across the street to the department store called Stillman's. There, we could get on the elevator to go to one of probably four or five different floors to shop. I can almost still hear the elevator operator announcing, "Second floor: Ladies ready-to-wear! Bath linens! Small appliances!"  

Of course, that floor didn't interest me. I was thinking, "show me the toys"! Especially, if it was around Christmas. That was the time of the year that Fort Wayne pulled out all the stops. All the windows were decorated and the arch over the main corner of Calhoun and Wayne held a gigantic Christmas tree with over-sized ornaments that were just a strong wind away from being "exhibit A" in damaged car roof lawsuit. In the air, there were Christmas carols that played from who knows where and at this corner, when a bell sounded, it meant that pedestrians were free to cross in any direction, including diagonally. 

But perhaps, the biggest deal was the show window at Wolf and Dessauer (we called it "W&D's" for short). There, right before your eyes, was Santa's workshop, Christmas trains, woodland creatures, you name it, if it was magical, it was in those windows! 

Many of the Fort Wayne Baby Boomers remember these times and are more than ready to talk your leg off about them. Hence, this cartoon that appeared in the December 2009 issue of Fort Wayne Magazine.

Click to see more holiday cartoons.



A Public Radio Station Interview With Me About My Cartooning.

Last February, I was honored to be asked to do an interview about my cartooning with Fort Wayne's own Julia Meek at 89.1 WBOI, our Northeastern Indiana Public Radio Station.


I'm not a veteran at doing these kinds of things, so as you might imagine, I was a bit apprehensive. But, as it turns out, it really was quite enjoyable. Julia is such a smart, funny and kind interviewer, that the time just seemed to whisk by. She asked really great questions that showed that she'd put a lot of thought into it. It also helps that she's an artist, as well as being fantastic in many other muse-driven activities.

In a few days, I'm scheduled to do a television interview. This time for a show called arts IN focus on PBS 39 WFWA. Why all the attention from public broadcast media? My theory is that PBS and NPR only program shows that appeal to a smarter demographic.

And obviously, they've researched me and my work and have found that I'm quite intelejunt.


Looking for professional, legal and copyright protected Business Cartoons to make your business presentation stand out?

For just a small fee, businesses such as yours, can use professionally created cartoons to add humor and foster a good feeling among your team, clients, customers or audience. For many years, successful businesses have used cartoons in customer newsletters, emails, powerpoint presentations, advertising and gifts. 


Cartoons have a way of connecting to your intended audience with a simple concept that makes them laugh and feel understood. (Think of service technicians, the world over, who have the famous "You want it when?!?" cartoon posted at a prominent place in their place of business.) Now, what if you were a service oriented magazine, with these service workers as your subscribers? And what if you were the first to publish that cartoon? Can you see how the service technicians could feel favorably about a magazine that understands them enough to publish a cartoon about the subject on unreasonable service turn-around time? It's funny and it relates to them!

Cartoons can also add a small oasis of levity to materials that can be pretty "dry". There's a reason that top-notched publications use cartoons to break up columns and columns of facts, figures and data. Just ask The Wall Street Journal, Barron's or Harvard Business Review. They have all used cartoons, successfully for years. You can use the same cartoons used in these publications or even commission new custom cartoons for your individual purposes. It's only $20 to automatically download a cartoon for e-purposes. Or contact me for print use or to ask about custom cartoons.





Cartoon Sketch Not Chosen For Fort Wayne Monthly

cows at johnny appleseed festival

First of all, these sketches I post aren't meant to be a slam against Fort Wayne Monthly Magazine. They are a DREAM to work with and are always supportive of my cartoon ideas. It's just that every month, I submit three Fort Wayne-specific sketches and only one can be chosen to be finalized into a finished version that eventually gets published in the intended issue. 

It works that way in much of the publishing world. You submit a number of sketches to the magazine's editor or sometimes the art director. They have a meeting with others around the magazine and (hopefully) choose one to eventually print.

I wouldn't post sketches that I send to other magazines, because if Magazine A doesn't select anything, a similar Magazine B might be interested. But not if it has already been plastered all over the internet on somebody's blog.

In the case of Fort Wayne Monthly, there is no other magazine that would be interested in publishing cartoons about Fort Wayne. So they either sit on my hard drive or I post them here. Some might say, why not just generalize the cartoon by taking the Fort Wayne elements out of the joke? To them I say, THAT SOUNDS LIKE A LOT OF WORK!!! You know, these naps of mine aren't going to take themselves!

So, here goes. This sketch was drawn a few months ago in anticipation of the September issue. Anybody who knows about Fort Wayne in September, knows that the Johnny Appleseed Festival is a big deal. Food, music, art, crafts, and all kinds of historical stuff about our heritage. Oh yes, and the bees! But, I already did a cartoon a long time ago about the bees at the festival, so this this one is about the hay bales arranged throughout the festival grounds.  


Celebrate National Dog Day, A Day Late With A Business Outsourcing Cartoon

Well here I am, a day late and a doggy short. Is that the old phrase? No, I didn't think so, but YOU try to come up with an opening line for a blog post. Anyways, in honor of our illustrious furry friends, I've decided to post one of my dog cartoons, hopefully for your enjoyment. Feel free to show it to Fido or Fidette. You'll know they like it if you get right up in their face and start saying their name while talking in baby talk. If they start licking your face, they like the cartoon. Unless you just ate a bologna sandwich, which could mean they are motivated by something else entirely.   

But show it to them anyway. He or she might enjoy seeing this business cartoon featuring a K9 in a starring role. Do you know what it must take for a cartoon dog like this to work his or her way up the corporate ladder to finally become a CED (Chief Executive Dog)? Probably they would need to start off in the mailroom, trying to hold back from their natural impulse of barking at the mail carrier. That must be r-r-r-rough.

Maybe next, they would be promoted to a customer service phone job, where they would salivate every time the phone rang. Or possibly they work their way up through a position in Human Resources, which when you think about the name of the department, is kind of biased towards humans and not doggies. 

Well this dog certainly is enjoying his place at the head of the board room table and is really tickled when one of the board members brings up the idea of outsourcing. Check out the cartoon and you'll see why. Thanks and happy National Dog Day, yesterday!

If you would like to use this cartoon in your powerpoint,  presentation, email or other electronic media, just click on the cartoon and you'll find yourself on the cartoon page where you can download it for $20.  Want to use it in print form for newsletters, magazines or books? Click CONTACT at the top of the page and we'll figure out a fair price for your specific needs.


Grab The Popcorn, It's Time For A Business Cartoon Video.

Here it is. Back by popular demand! My Smeltzer Cartoons "Business Cartoon Slideshow Presentation" on Youtube! You're Welcome!

Actually, I'm embedding this video on my new fancy-schmancy  blog, because I've redesigned my website and my old website page that was home to the video before, is no longer there. Go ahead and check- I'll wait. Hmmmmmm...hmmmmmm...hmmmmmm (fingers tapping on the desk) Hmmmmmmm....hmmmm...hmmm (whistling theme to The Munsters). Okay, are you back? See, I told you it wasn't there.

It's here and it's available for your viewing pleasure. All one minute and 19 seconds of it. So, grab the popcorn and those snow cap candy deals and sit back as you lose yourself in the whimsical world of Steve Smeltzer's cast of wise-crackin' business characters. (I wonder if anybody's actually reading this?) You want cartoons of business people giving presentations? You got it! You want cartoons about non-productive employees? You got it! You want anthropomorphic animals in business suits? You got it? You want.....well you get the idea.

One mouse click and you'll see the funniest business cartoons you'll see at that same exact moment, anywhere else. At Smeltzer Cartoons, I take your busy schedule into consideration and have painstakingly designed the video to play with one mouse click. (Or maybe that was Youtube, that did that...I'll check into that). Irregardlessly regardless, you'll notice that the cartoons seamlessly move from one to the other and all you need to do is sit back and read the captions underneath the funny pictures. Those of you who have not taken the Evelyn Wood Speed Reading Course may want to make use of the pause button on the lower left of the video player.

Seriously, now. If you want to use one of these cartoons in your business powerpoint presentation, email, social media, etc., find it here 

Click on the cartoon and it will take you to a shopping cart, where you can pay by credit card. It's safe and simple. And it's only $20 to download. 

If you want to use it print media (magazine, newsletter, book, greeting card, etc.), contact me here and we'll work out a price.