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Originally this term referred to the full-scale preliminary sketch made for a painting. This outline, usually done in chalk or charcoal, was then transferred onto the easel-painting or fresco. Today, a cartoon is a humorous drawing or parody of people or events. It can be a series of drawings that tells a story, as in a strip cartoon.

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Anthony Trollope
by Sir Leslie Ward
study for drawing published in Vanity Fair 5 April 1873
NPG 3915

Harry Gordon Selfridge Sr
by Powys Evans
circa 1930
NPG 5806

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