|Lat in Berita Harian newspaper.|
After finished school, he moved to Kuala Lumpur to find a job. He applied a job as a cartoonist at Berita Harian. After that, he was told that there was no position for him at that time. Suddenly, the paper's editor, Abdul Samad Ismail offered him the post of a crime reporter. At that time, Lat's father had fallen seriously ill and could not work; Lat had to become the breadwinner of his family. Aside from taking the job, he continued contributing cartoons to other publications.Lat was later transferred to Berita's parent publication, New Straits Times. Moving throughout the city to report on crimes gave Lat opportunities to observe and interact with the myriads of lives in the urban landscape, enabling him to gather material for his cartoons and increasing his understanding of the world. Nevertheless, he felt he lacked the persistently inquisitive nature needed to succeed as a crime reporter Lat became convinced that he was a failure at his job, and his despondency led him to tender his resignation. Samad, believing Lat had a bright future with the press, furiously rejected the letter.
|Scenes of the Malaysian Life (his works)|
Lat Changed career
After that, Lat changed his career to the Asia Magazine on 10 February 1974. Asia Magazine, a periodical based in Hong Kong, published his cartoons about Bersunat—a circumcision ceremony all Malaysian boys of the Islamic faith have to undergo.The cartoons impressed Tan Sri Lee Siew Yee, editor-in-chief of the New Straits Times. His first task in the company is document Malaysian culture in a series of cartoons titled Scenes of Malaysian Life. The newspaper also sent him to study for four months at St Martin's School of Art in London,where he was introduced to English editorial cartoons and newspapers. Returning to Malaysia full of fascination with his experience, Lat transformed Scenes of Malaysian Life into a series of editorial cartoons. His approach proved popular, and at the end of 1975 he was appointed full-time cartoonist with total freedom in his work. By 2009, the book has been reprinted 16 timesand published in several other countries in various languages, including Portuguese, French, and Japanese. The success of The Kampung Boy established Lat as the "most renowned cartoonist in Malaysia.
|The Kampung Boy shows about Lat's childhood.|
In 1978, his works had been compiled and sold to the public. In 1979, Berita Publishing Sendirian Berhad published Lat's The Kampung Boy, an autobiographical cartoon account of his youth. His book become popular and the people love it. Plus, 60000 to 70000 of the copies were sold at that time within four months the book were released.