Thursday, June 30, 2011

What Do You Use for Reference?

You can get lost doing reference. Google images can be a time sucker -- a fun time sucker, but, well, nonetheless. You have to be careful with your time. And you also, as a cartoonists, need to be able to draw EVERYTHING.

One of my dear friends was the late, great Tom Gill (1913-2005). If you were a boy who read Western comic books in the 1950s, you knew Tom Gill's work.

Tom, who was raised in Flatbush Brooklyn, NY, drew the popular LONE RANGER and SILVER comic books for Dell/Gold Key in the 1960s. Tom did some other Western books too, including licensed properties like BONANZA. Most of these were produced in his Long Island studio. He was a prolific hard working cartoonist, who also made time to teach.

One day, in the early 2000's, during a visit to his home, we were paging through some of his original LONE RANGER art. I admired the detail: the sagebrush, spurs, horses, Western towns, etc. -- all excellently delineated. I asked him what he used for reference.

"Reference? I didn't have time for reference!" was the answer he growled at me.

Related: Lone Ranger #38 via Pappy's Golden Age Comics Blogzine
Tom Gill's unseen THE ADVENTURES OF BRAINS BENTON comic strip proposal
Tom Gill: A Personal Remembrance

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