Friday, March 22, 2019

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Bill Peet's Magazine Gag Cartoons

Bill Peet was a long-time Disney artist, not only working on all of the major animated releases from Snow White to 101 Dalmatians, but also contributing immensely to the choices of these projects, as well as to the writing. He was a major force at Disney, and Walt Disney himself trusted Peet's opinions.

I had no idea that he tried his hand at gag cartooning as well. Here are a few from his wonderful Caldecott Award-winning autobiography BILL PEET AN AUTOBIOGRAPHY.

He sent his gag cartoons to the top markets of the day: Collier's, True, the Post and The New Yorker. They were all rejected. From The New Yorker he received this note:

"Your humor is too undisciplined, but we would like to see more of your drawings."

Bill writes in his book:

"That small glimmer of hope wasn't nearly enough to spur me on. Doing cartoons week after week, even if I sold them all, would be frustrating work."

Bill would go on, after Disney, to focus on children's books, creating thirty-six books. A lot of them were based on stories he would make up to tell his own kids.

Here's some of his gag cartoons that were never bought. I thought they were great. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Video: Matt Wuerker

Matt Wuerker, political cartoonist for Politico, talks about how you don't have to be a great artist to be a great cartoonist, as well as creating Trump's skin tone color in this short video titled "Dream Jobs: Political Cartoonist."

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Dick Buchanan: Some Favorite Magazine Gag Cartoons 1940-60s

There's a saying around here that most people are crazy. There's good crazy and bad crazy. And the nice thing is that most people I know are the good kinda crazy. Case in point is my friend Dick Buchanan, who has amassed an XXXL clip file of golden age gag cartoons. Not only that, but he shares them with the world. Thank you, you lovely, crazy Dick Buchanan, for diving into your files in your Greenwich Village apartment so many times and coming up with these pretty-much-unseen-since-publication single panel cartoons. These are, as you will see, crazy good.

Here's the first time I showcased some of Dick's collection, three years ago now:


Dick Buchanan was kind enough to pass along some favorite old magazine gag cartoons. I agree with Dick that these cartoons, most of them unseen for over fifty years, deserve an encore. Here's Dick:

"As an aspiring cartoonist long ago, I kept a file of cartoons clipped from every magazine I could find. I still have I still use it for reference and amusement. I am happy to share it's contents. I have forwarded a few samples. There are more."

Gahan Wilson, one of his early cartoons from Collier's, June 24, 1955:

George Booth, The Saturday Evening Post, October 17, 1953:

John Gallagher:

Hank Ketcham in an early 1950's Saturday Evening Post:

Clyde Lamb, American Legion Magazine, October 1952:

Mel Lazarus (not "Mell" yet), in the Saturday Evening Post, January 20, 1951 -- still 6 years away from Miss Peach:

Virgil Partch, Collier's, 1940s:

Rowland Wilson, in that same Saturday Evening Post issue (October 17, 1953) as George Booth (see above):

Henry Syverson. In 1963, even the furniture was funny. From Look Magazine, December 3, 1963:

Jack Tippitt, Look Magazine, July 22, 1958. Two-time NCS Gag Cartoonist of the Year (1963 & 1966):

Thanks, Dick, for sharing these great gag cartoons!

Monday, March 18, 2019

Tom K. Ryan 1926 - 2019

T.K. Ryan, creator of King Features' long-running TUMBLEWEEDS comic strip passed away March 12, 2019. He drew the strip for 42 years, from 1965 to 2007.

Details are scant at this time.

From his Lambiek page:

Born in Anderson, Indiana, Tom K. Ryan attended both Notre Dame University and the University of Cincinnati. He started his career as a commercial artist, designing football helmets, but also drawing editorial and sports cartoons for local newspapers. Out of boredom, he started reading Western Literature. This resulted in the creation of an innovative newspaper strip called 'Tumbleweeds', which combined the Old West with a hip, modern approach.

Originally syndicated by Lew Little Syndicate, it first appeared in 1965, and was then distributed to over 300 newspapers by King Features until Ryan's retirement from the strip in December 2007. The strip has been collected in many paperbacks, and has even been made into a musical, that was performed in Las Vegas in 1983. 'Tumbleweeds' has inspired many comic artists, including Jim Davis, creator of 'Garfield', who assisted Ryan from 1969 until 1978.


King Features tributes him on Facebook

The T.K. Ryan page at the Farley Funeral Home in Venice, FL. 

The official Tumbleweeds site 

The Daily Cartoonist obituary

Friday, March 15, 2019

Video: Roz Chast on "Going Into Town" Graphic Novel

New Yorker cartoonist Roz Chast talks about her new graphic novel with Bill Hayes at The Strand in NYC. This was recorded on March 6, 2019. 

New Yorker cartoonist and NYT bestselling author Roz Chast, native Brooklynite-turned-suburban commuter deemed the quintessential New Yorker, has always been intensely alive to the glorious spectacle that is Manhattan--the daily clash of sidewalk racers and dawdlers, the fascinating range of dress codes, and the priceless, nutty outbursts of souls from all walks of life. For Chast, adjusting to life outside the city was surreal (you can own trees!? you have to drive!?), but she recognized that the reverse was true for her kids. On trips into town, they would marvel at the strange visual world of Manhattan--its blackened sidewalk gum wads, "those West Side Story--things" (fire escapes)--its crazily honeycombed systems and grids. Told through Chast's singularly zany, laugh-out-loud, touching, and true cartoons, Going into Town is part New York stories (the "overheard and overseen" of the island borough), part personal and practical guide to walking, talking, renting, and venting--an irresistible, one-of-a-kind love letter to the city.

Thursday, March 14, 2019

TV Series PILOT -Drawing Inspiration- Leigh Rubin of Rubes Cartoons and Ryan Johnson of NewRuleFX

Want to know more about how a cartoonist cartoons? Here's Leigh Rubin, of the comic panel "Rubes," to tell you what he does:

Renowned artist Leigh Rubin, an internationally syndicated cartoonist and special effects wizard Ryan Johnson from NewRuleFX join forces to create a TV series that explores the where creativity comes from and what inspires the creative passion. In this pilot episode of the Drawing Inspiration series, the two take you behind the scenes at special effects prop shop and out to the Central Coast to see a lot of bovine-inspired art! Leigh commissions Ryan to build a full scale cow inspired by one of Leigh's popular cartoon characters. Drawing Inspiration is a co-production of New Rule Productions, Inc. and Leigh Rubin Cartoonist.