Ashleigh Brilliant

Cartoonist, Author

1933 –


Who is Ashleigh Brilliant?

Ashleigh Ellwood Brilliant is an author and syndicated cartoonist born in London, UK, and living in Santa Barbara, California, USA. He is best known for his Pot-Shots, single-panel illustrations with one-line humorous remarks, which began syndication in the United States of America in 1975. Brilliant achieved American citizenship in 1969.

Brilliant attended Hendon School, London, in the 1940s–50s. He graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a PhD in history in 1964 and taught on a "Floating University", an educational cruise ship that traveled around the world in the mid-60s. He later taught at a community college in Bend, Oregon.

During the "Summer of Love" in San Francisco in 1967, Brilliant gave daily lectures near the Haight Street entrance of Golden Gate Park. He released a live album recorded in Golden Gate Park in 1967 on a small Hollywood, California record label, Dorash Enterprises. The album, Ashleigh Brilliant in the Haight-Ashbury, is quite rare today. The material uses familiar public domain songs and melodies and incorporates clever poetic lyrics about marijuana, the Diggers, San Francisco neighborhoods, and his personal experiences, all the while displaying a banter which ebbs and flows with his audience, who respond warmly to the performance and also participate in the songs. He states in the recording that he had been performing in this setting for approximately two hours each day the prior four weeks. He laughs throughout his performance, while the audience joins him in singing along and banging on percussive items. The album ends with a "Haight-Ashbury Farewell".

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Dec 9, 1933
  • United Kingdom
Lived in
  • London

on July 23, 2013


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