Tuesday, October 10, 2017

From the Dick Buchanan Files: Orlando Busino Gag Cartoons 1956 - 1966

My friend Dick Buchanan not only reminds me that it's Orlando Busino's birthday on October 10th, but he also shares fifteen of Orlando's magazine cartoons. Happy birthday, Orlando!

Orlando Busino was raised in Binghamton, NY. He was still in elementary school when he sold his first cartoon to the New York Daily Mirror. He was also a frequent cartoon contest winner in the "Open Road for Boys" magazine. In high school, he created a superhero comic for the school paper, "Bulldog, with Central, the Wonder Dog." He served at the Albrook Air Force Station in Panama after being drafted. And he contributed to the army newspaper during his twenty months there.

Returning home, he went to Binghamton University, which was then called Triple Cities College, and then moved out of state to complete his schooling at the University of Iowa. He drew cartoons for both college newspapers. Upon graduation in 1952, he moved to New York City. He was able to secure a job in the advertising department of MacMillan Publishing, and at night, attended the Cartoonists and Illustrators School. After about a year, Orlando sold his first cartoon to The Saturday Evening Post. This was just the beginning of his highly successful freelance cartoonist career.

He worked with George Gladir on the Archie series of humor titles in the 1960s: "Archie's Madhouse" and "Tales Calculated to Drive You Bats." I think his cover to the third issue (above) is one of the best comic book covers of all time.

Orlando has been drawing "Gus," a comic about a large, shaggy dog for Boys' Life Magazine since 1970. There are two book collections from 1980 and 1981 respectively: "Good Boy! And Other Animal Cartoons" and "Oh, Gus!" Gus was featured on the Boys' Life cover in 1981.

A three-time winner of the National Cartoonists Society Magazine Gag Cartoonist of the Year, Orlando was also honored by the National Cartoonists Society Connecticut Chapter in 2008.

Here's Dick with an intro to his collection of Busino favorites:

Orlando Busino is often described as “a cartoonist’s cartoonist” which is only to say he’s one superb artist. He is a three-time National Cartoonists Society’s Magazine Gag Cartoonist of the Year in 1965, 1967 and 1968.

He mentored many cartoonists, among them Bob Weber. Weber, in his 1980 NCS Album thumbnail bio, took time to credit his one time neighbor Busino as a “tremendous benefit” to his career. (There is no truth to the rumor that Orlando still has Weber’s lawnmower he borrowed)

In the spirit with which they were created, here are a few Orlando Busino gag cartoons from the mid-1950’s to the mid-1960’s.  A couple of these are among my all-time favorites.

 1.  COLLIER’S January 20, 1956

2. SATURDAY EVENING POST January 29, 1966

3.  1000 JOKES MAGAZINE.  June-August, 1957

  4. FOR LAUGHING OUT LOUD. July-September, 1957

5. SATURDAY EVENING POST.  February, 26, 1966

6.  BOYS’ LIFE.  June, 1960



9.  1000 JOKES MAGAZINE.  September-November, 1964

10.  BOYS’ LIFE. August, 1965

11.  SATURDAY EVENING POST. September 22, 1962

12.  BOYS’ LIFE.  June, 1960

13.  FOR LAUGHING OUT LOUD. July-September, 1957

14.  BOYS’ LIFE.  August, 1965 

15.  SATURDAY EVENING POST.  January 29, 1966

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