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24 Satirical illustrations raising awareness on what’s wrong in the modern society

Modern society is plagued by lots of problems, ranging from technology and a generalized negativity.
Most of the times, illustrators like to depict fun things, but Steve Cutts and John Holcroft gave us a bleakand very real image of our society and its problems.
John Holcroft’s illustrations are inspired by the 50s art and depict the serious problems faced by humanity.He is based in England and everyone can admire his work
Steve Cutts, who is also based in England, creates illustrations focused on modern society’s excesses. Hegets his inspiration from the 30s and 40s cartoons, but he also makes modern comic books. You can seemore of his work at

Both illustrators want to raise awareness on today’s society, filled with serious problems. They put their talent to work in order to create satirical depictions of modern-day realities, sending a strong message to the viewer.

1. This illustration by Steve Cutts depicts the fear we all have of internet. The guy hanging from the comments is the average person, who is afraid of the negative comments they will receive for their post in the comments.Internet feedback is scary!

2. John Holcroft’s illustration shows the end of books. In his grim illustration, the book is a coffin, which is gradually sealed by social media nails, like Facebook & Co. We all know that literature is dead, but when you see it like this, it becomes more obvious.

3. Since the appearance of smartphones, we’ve been using them 24/7, becoming attached to them. As we hide our faces behind our phones, they’ve been gradually representing our identity, but in a fake way.

4. Holcroft is representing the Earth slipping through our fingers in this illustration which draws attention on the climate change and the high level of pollution. As we drain the planet from its resources, we are losing it bit by bit.

5. Pokemon Go allowed the 90s kids to re-live their childhood, but this time, on their smartphones. Joined by today’s teens, millennials embraced this app, completely immersing themselves in their phones. Pokemon Go ended up being a big human trap, as the players ignored the surroundings and got in troubles.

6. The Apple is now filled with wires and batteries. This illustration can be seen in two ways: as an ode to the latest technology or as the decay of natural life.

7. We spend the entire life running after money, but when we eventually get them, we die. We end up in a money trap, which kills us. The illustration depicts the reality of modern day consumerism.

8. Private healthcare is a system that runs on money, as seen in this illustration. Doctors are like robots, which only work if you stuff money in them. The illustration shows the issues of feeding a private system, instead of relying on public healthcare.

9. We rely on social media to feed our ego, as depicted in this illustration. The cereal box is full of likes, which feed the ego, allowing us to live another day. Virtual acceptance is the main source of self validation, especially for young people, who are addicted to social media

10. A child’s freedom depends on the parent’s freedom, but, unfortunately, parents are trapped by the modern society. The pregnant prisoner is a vivid depiction of this reality and shows the issues of the justice system. Another interpretation of this illustration is that a child who comes from such a dark environment is not able to escape their fate of turning into a victim of the said environment.

11. Holcroft captures the gender inequality in this illustration by depicting how women’s flight to success is cut down by their gender, represented by a pink ribbon. We can also see the men flight up, undisturbed by an obstacle.

12. This illustration by Holcroft shows the irony of modern dating, which turned into a light game. The chocolate box shows pretty faces, ready to be picked from their place. The online dating game is all based on physical appearance and the short description of the people, not the real person.

13. This illustration shows how people are the masters of animals, but smartphones are the masters of humans. Smartphones are driving our lives, using likes as treats for humans. The entire scene in this illustration shows just how much social media controls our life, minute by minute.

14. Parenting is one of the hot topics of the day, so it is present in our series of illustrations. Despite we like to think we let our children make their own decisions, parents control their children at every step. In this illustration, the parents hold the child in a leash, controlling their child’s thinking and education.

15. Another social platform which controls our lives is Twitter. In this illustration, it is depicted as the IV keeping a young girl alive. The age of the girl makes us think the new generation is addicted to social media and needs it to survive. The illustration is the core of the modern human’s relation with technology.

16. This can of “modern life” has all the attributes of the modern-day living. It is overrated, under- nourishing, full of disillusions and disappointment. The warning signs on the can also reveal how toxic it is, so not everyone should take this can of condensed life. While the can depicts the realities of our void lives, it also suggests the lack of healthy food in our markets.

17. This brutal illustration shows how branding is modeling our brains. We are constantly violated with tons of messages, which aim to cut deeper into the human brain. The result is we end up brainwashed by marketing, tricked to contribute to consumerism. This explains why many people end up paying more for branded products, despite the fact they are the same as unbranded ones.

18. Speaking of consumerism, the next illustration shows how shopping can turn a person into a plain product. The woman seen shopping in the streets of Paris turned into a product, as she is wearing a bar code. This is the core of consumerism, which turns us into identical creatures. Trends come and go, robbing people of their individuality.

19. This funny illustration reveals the reality of humanity, which is a real plague for the planet. The image shows a doctor giving the diagnosis to planet Earth, who is horrified to learn that she has humans. Indeed, she has the right to be scared, as humans cut down the woods, drain the natural resources and pollute the environment, killing the planet slowly. Humans are creatures to be afraid of, if you are a planet.

20. We all know what an internet troll is: that sneaky individual who always delivers an offensive comment to anything they find online. In this illustration, the troll is seem hiding under a bridge and sporting monster-like features. The bridge is the metaphor for the internet, which enables these trolls to hide – in real life you can’t spot them and most of the times, they are too afraid to bully anyone face to face.

21. This illustration shows the positive side of smartphones, as well as the change of times. Since the appearance of smartphones, which have built-in tools and apps for pretty much anything, a big number of items became useless. For example, calculators, compasses and rulers are now things of the past, because the average smartphone has built-in tools which replace them. The only thing a smartphone can’t replace is a pair of glasses, which are also depicted, as a sign not everything can be replaced by new technology.

22. Holidays changed when the internet made it possible to share our memories on social media. Instead of leaving for a nice trip, one can relax on Facebook. What we don’t know is that social media is full of sharks, which are going to take their share out of us. Another thing we see in this illustration is that oversharing our holidays, we attract a wide range of people with bad intention, from trolls to thieves. The modern escape doesn’t look like an escape anymore.

23. Remember Michael Jackson’s Thriller? Well, the late singer was a visionary, as the images from the video resemble modern-day life. Everywhere you go you can see hoards of zombies, wandering the streets with empty minds, holding their smartphones. Unable to see where they go, they simply walk, completely immersed in the screens.

24. What happens when we are buried in our devices? We live surrounded by smartphones, laptops and television, as well as dozens of other devices. We can see the nature’s beauty on them, but not the real nature, so in this illustration, someone is trying to paint the technology in bright green. Unfortunate, technology can’t replace nature.

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