Recently I had the opportunity to see the great cartoonist Bill Plympton speak in Portland, Oregon. He spoke at the McMenamins "Mission Theater" which is a movie theater / performing space that also serves good beer on tap. The title was "The Life and Art of the King of Animation". Bill Plympton has an independent studio in Oregon City and a website here that I highly recommend you check out. Bill is also on Kickstarter for a new movie called "Revengeance" and he offers some great prize packages if you make a donation including personally illustrated artwork.
Bill had a great talk about why he is still independent and was very positive about other artists and designers in the industry. He also said that he was very popular in Europe and that they could understand that cartoons can also be art for adults and aren't just for kids.
I was also going to buy something and get it autographed by Bill but literally every single person who was present at the auditorium jumped up and got into line at his Merch table and he was having a conversation (and fun) with everyone in line so I had to leave or it would have been a very long night. Likely most of them were artists in Portland and had been waiting a while to see Bill talk. He said that he wished the other crowds he met in the USA were as enthusiastic as Portland.