Shanghai Tango is a mysterious comic illustrator whose real identity is still unknown. Despite his anonymity, his work has been going viral on the net. He draws minimalist black and white illustrations that are simply a delight to look at. His style is reminiscent of the old school cartoons that used to appear on Sunday papers.
Tango’s illustrations are a refreshing change to eyes tired of lolcats and badly photoshopped images. Drawn in stark black and white, the viewer is forced to appreciate the idea behind his work, and not the work itself. It’s a no frills extravaganza of witty illustrations where a cat can turn into the number five, a couple of penguins turn into a pair of eyes, a dog drools over its own x-ray, and shadows turn into something else.
It doesn’t exactly sound funny when I write it down like that, you’ll just have to trust my word for it that Shanghai Tango can turn these otherwise simple concepts into something hilarious.
One thing I’ve noticed is that he doesn’t exactly make something funny – he just has the gift of seeing the potential hilarity in everyday situations. A guy just standing there with his hands in his pockets and a dog peeing on a wall isn’t exactly something to smile about, but Shanghai Tango can turn this seemingly ordinary event into something that will bring a smile to his viewer’s face.
Shanghai Tango is his handle on Tumblr where he posts his work. Thus far, he has well over a hundred comic illustrations posted in his Tumblr account.
Check out his Tumblr.