Our post is on Barry Rickwood, and/or Zmud.

The cover of the publication says it contains cartoons from People magazine.  Inside, we see that it was published by Magazine Promotions Australia of Sydney, and printed by Eastern Suburbs Newspapers, Waterloo.  It was published in 1984.

Just who this person is, or who these persons are is a bit of a mystery.

The Design and Art Australia Online, talks about Barry Rickwood, and says that his active period was from 1986 to 1988.

However, the National Library of Australia, indicates that Barry Rickwood did the text for the book, while Zmud did the actual illustrations. They also go on to say,


Sydney : Magazine Promotions Australia, c1984
[64] p. : col. ill. ; 17 x 25 cm. 


“64 all colour Zmud cartoons from People magazine” — Cover.

And, they go on to list, Up the Cross / John Byrell ; illustrated by Zmud

They also mention an interview with Byrell, in their audio archives.

So, from this I deduce that there was an actual person named ‘Zmud’, who illustrated at least two publications. And that Barry Rickwood did text for cartoons.

However, to further muddy the waters, Ian McCall, of the Australian Cartoon Museumspent quite a bit of time on my behalf, trying to round up information on Zmud/Barry Rickwood. Ian said he had a chance to visit with Barry in the early 1980’s, but could not provide much information on him. Ian found a reference to Barry in the book, “The 102 Collection of Australia’s Leading Cartoonists.” The reference states,

Barry Rickwood came to Australia in 1964 to work in a foundry at Whyalla, South Australia. After countless jobs round the coasts of Australia, he joined News Ltd. In 1979. For the last four years he has worked as a freelance, his work appearing regularly in People, Australasian Post and MAD magazines.

I guess People Magazine was quite a change from the usual post WWII magazines in Australia.

Here is an interesting audio interview with the first ‘cover girl’ for People Magazine.

And a print interview with the same lady.

I actually have two copies of this collection. There must have been some problems in the production end, as one has duplicated pages. Same number of cartoons, just a few extra pages. They have my sympathy, as I have been known to produce a small book of poems with the cover headed north, and the contents headed south.

I will stop here, and just say that the cartoons are fun to look at, and if the authorship is unknown, then that is just another interesting item about this collection.

Before we look at the cartoons, a thought about the times represented by them. There are several which could be set in ‘The Rocks’ section of old Sydney. Many times, what seems to be an historic setting, has current (well as current as the strip date, around 1984) politicians somewhere in the cartoon. Sometimes they have current situations.

There is a recurring big burly blonde guy who floats areound in time. We see him in an historic setting, then in a current setting.

Politicians are often found lurking in corners, or as background characters. There are exceptions, when they are front and center, and not in a very flattering light. The back cover (above) has a bunch standing by the side of the road. Of particular interest is a two faced gent in the back.

Well, on to the cartoons. First the medical profession. Sorry about the first one, I cut off the caption. It reads, You say I’m as sound as the dollar…I’m that bloody crook?.







Occupational hazards. Or not.


Which segues into Bosses in general.


And on into, or back to, early Australia.





Liquid refreshment.




note the politicians in lower left corner.

Athletic activities.


Cultural events.


Summer holidays.


Around the home front.



Not all wives are quite as casual as the one above.  Often, they are depicted as large, and formidable.



But, not all the time.





Let us wrap up with a view of the political landscape.




Well, there we have it.  If anyone has additional information on Barry Rickwood/Zmud, I would appreciate knowing more about him or them.

Thanks for reading this.



About visualhumor

Enjoy viewing and collecting visual humor from around the world.
This entry was posted in Australian Cartoons, French Cartoons, Satire, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Dann Lennard says:

    I work at PEOPLE magazine. Zmud supplied cartoons for us up until 1998 when an editorial shake-up led to him being dropped from the magazine. I never knew his real name, sadly. He also contributed a regular “sexy” weekly strip titled “Bonzarella”. I’ll check up for you with some old staffers and see if I can get a name for you. 🙂

  2. Dann Lennard says:

    I work at PEOPLE magazine. We stopped using Zmud in 1998 after an editorial shake-up. I never knew his real name but I loved his artwork. I’ll ask another old-timer and see if I can dig up a real name for you. Zmud also contributed a weekly “sexy” strip for us for years called BONZARELLA.

  3. Steve Kimber says:

    I was explaining to my wife only the other day just what an intelligent cartoonish ZMUD was.One cartoon depicted a very old lady accompanying her very, very old husband to the doctor who had asked for a stool sample, a urine sample and finally a sperm sample. Her husband was deaf and in frustration she yells at him ” oh f–ck it, just give him your underpants. I would give anything to have a copy of all his cartoons. Maybe it’s finally time for whoever ZMUD was to finally achieve the wonderful notoriety he deserved.

  4. Peter Rickwood says:

    Barry Rickwood and Zmud are the same person. I know this because I am his son 🙂

    It’s the same Barry Rickwood who did Bonzarella, as mentioned by Dann Lennard in the comments.

    • visualhumor says:

      Hi Peter,
      Somehow my earlier reply went off into the bozone. Anyway, thank you for the information. I am certain I am not the only one to wonder about Rickwood/Zmud status. It is a beautiful 24 and sunny outside. Hope your weather is as nice.-Ted

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