Friday, June 30, 2017

Documentary Clip: SHE MAKES COMICS

Here's a clip from SHE MAKES COMICS (2014), a documentary about women in comics. This clip focuses on the rise of comic books, the appeal of strong female characters, and features Jackie Ormes, the first female African-American cartoonist in the comic business. Trina Robbins and Heidi MacDonald also appear.

Gaar Williams Appreciation by Rob Stolzer

Rob Stolzer writes an appreciation of cartoonist Gaar Williams (1880 - 1935) whose masterful ink style still resonates today.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

"How Walt Disney Cartoons Are Made" (1938)

Wallace Carlson of the Bray Studios: "How Animated Cartoons Are Made"

From the silent days. Thanks to Jerry Beck:

Vintage Animation: "In a Cartoon Studio"

Video: Fleischer Studios in the 1930s

The making of a Popeye cartoon from a Paramount "Popular Science" short:

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

SONGS TO GROW ON Illustrations by David Stone Martin

SONGS TO GROW ON, a collection of American folk songs for kids, assembled by Beatrice Landeck, is a great book, full of classics with wonderful illustrations by David Stone Martin. It's copyright 1950 by the Edward B. Marks Music Corporation, William Sloane Associates, Publishers. I came across a well used fourth edition at a charity shop in Vermont.

David Stone Martin (1913 - 1992) took night classes at the Art Institute of Chicago. By the 1950s, he moved to be near New York City and was creating LP album covers for hundreds jazz artists for Mercury, Dial, Disc and other record labels. A lot of these assignments originated from his friend, the record producer Norman Granz. Mr. Martin's illustrations also appeared in the leading magazines of the 1950s and 60s, The Saturday Evening Post and Seventeen Magazine and others. His work can be seen in MOMA, the Smithsonian, the Art Institute of Chicago and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Friday, June 23, 2017

See You Soon

I'm away. See you next week. 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

TAKE A LETTER YOURSELF! Drawings by Frank Modell

Secretaries grab power from their chauvinist bosses in this 1982 jokey paperback with drawings by the great Frank Modell.

This 1982 TAKE A LETTER YOURSELF! book was written as a tongue in cheek guide for female secretaries to turn the tables on the white males in power. It was written by Kathy Matthews and illustrated by the great cartoonist Frank Modell. It's copyright both of them, and was published by Ballantine.

The energy in Mr. Modell's line is what captivated me to buy this book from a second-hand dealer in Bristol, NH. I found the book was on a large shelf on the second floor of a barn full of books.

What I like is that you can see the speed in which Modell is drawing. Sometimes the ink can't catch up! And sometimes you can see some of the light pencil construction lines in the wash drawings.

This is what great cartooning looks like: vital, energetic and fun. These are just a few of the drawings from the book.

  -- Edited from a blog entry of June 22, 2015.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Video: Milton Caniff Tours The Museum of Cartoon Art, Rye Brook, NY (1986)

Via YouTube poster InfraMajin, who comments:

"A short video piece that aired between programming on NYC PBS station, WNET-13, in 1986. The Museum of Cartoon Art was located in the impressive, castle-like William E. Ward House, and was founded and run by cartoonist Mort Walker (Beetle Bailey, Hi & Lois) and his sons.

"... Sadly, the museum closed in 1992, and though its holdings were relocated to Boca Raton, Florida, re-opening (with an expanded collection) there in 1996, as The National Cartoon Museum (and later, The International Museum of Cartoon Art), the newer incarnation also eventually closed its doors in 2002, due to lack of sufficient funding.

"Pretty depressing, considering how much newspaper strips, comic books and cartoon animation have been big portion of our pop culture in the last century or so, and especially now, when nearly all of our biggest, most-popular films these days are based on (or heavily influenced by) comic books.

"Anyway, the video brings back a lot of fond memories, as I visited the Rye Brook location often, between 1984-87. The first Sunday of every month featured guest lectures by famous cartoonists (there was a high population of cartooning pros living in the NY/NJ/CT tri-state area at that time), so I was lucky to see and meet such notables as Caniff, Mort Walker, Jack Davis, Mort Drucker, Wendy & Richard Pini, Rick Veitch & Stephen Bissette, animation great James "Shamus" Culhane and others. The museum was just as fun and interesting as it looks in the video.

Hat tip to Comics Reporter.

Podcast Interview: Arnie Levin on The Virtual Memories Show

Above: Gil Roth, host of The Virtual Memories Show, and New Yorker cartoonist Arnie Levin.

New Yorker cartoonist Arnie Levin is interviewed on the podcast The Virtual Memories Show by host Gil Roth. Go listen.

"Cartooning, illustration and animation legend Arnie Levin joins the show to recount his epic career and life. We talk about Beatnik-era New York, his mother’s decades-long plot to turn him into a New Yorker cartoonist, the value of a good art director, telling the Marines he wanted to be a photographer, his two-minute education in directing animation, what it was like to see his style copied by an artist who was previously copying another artist’s style, the time Allen Ginsberg tried to give him an iguana, and more!"

This is but one of Mr. Roth's podcast interviews with illustrators and cartoonists. Go to the link above and you will see interviews with Seth, Patrick McDonnell, R.O. Blechman, Roz Chast and many others.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

CHEF'S HOLIDAY by Idwal Jones with Illustrations by Roger Duvoisin

I picked up CHEF'S HOLIDAY (published by Longmans, Green and Co., 1952) in Otter Brook Books, a tiny used bookstore by the Maine/New Hampshire border. The bookstore is not on the Web and its free bookmark that they gave me advises to "call for exact location."

CHEF'S HOLIDAY by Idwal Jones is about Mr. Jones, a chef, going on a holiday. Well, duh.

On the cover, the color painting is of Mr. Jones and wine-bearing friend who are fishing for eels. This leads to eel cooking, of course. The cover and interior ink drawings are by Roger Duvoisin (1904-1980), who may be best known for his children's books. He had won his first Caldecott Medal 4 years earlier for his illustrations for WHITE SNOW BRIGHT SNOW, which was written by Alvin Tresselt. (Vintage Kids' Books My Kid Loves has more about WHITE SNOW BRIGHT SNOW here.) I knew Mr. Duvoisin's work from his children's book PETUNIA.

Florian, the friend and guide for the book. As you can see, he loves food.

I love Duvoisin' thick and thin lines. Even non-living things have character, you know?

Above: some of the supporting cast.

A small, half page illustration. Again: simple, almost cartoony -- but the precise, spare drawing evokes a place and a mood succinctly.

Above is the picture that made me buy the book. Those little eels, poking their heads out to check Mssrs. DuPart and Jones were great to see (and, according to Mr. Jones, they really did poke their heads out, looking "like walking sticks"). Why the cover painting excludes the curious eels, I don't know.

These are just a few of the drawings.

This first edition was autographed by Mr. Jones, in French, to Mlle. Dorothy Friedman (sp?), on September 6, 1956.

-- This is an edited version of a blog entry that originally appeared June 9, 2011.

Monday, June 19, 2017

June 17, 2017 Jack Ziegler Memorial at the Society of Illustrators

Back row, L to R: Trevor Hoey, John Donohue, Robert Leighton, Tom Toro, David Borchart, George Booth, Anne Hall Elser, Bill Woodman, John O'Brien, Paul Karasik, Peter Steiner, John Klossner; next row, L to R: Ken Krimstein, Bob Eckstein, Amy Hwang, Roz Chast, Mort Gerberg, Bob Mankoff, Sam Gross, Liza Donnelly, Michael Maslin, Marshall Hopkins, Joe Dator; next row L to R: Peter C. Vey, Mick Stevens, Danny Shanahan, Edward Koren Felipe Galindo, Andrea Arroyo Mike Lynch — at the Society Of Illustrators, NYC.

Jack Ziegler, who created more than 1,600 cartoons for The New Yorker, passed away at the age of 74 in March. His family and cartoonist friends got together on Saturday to remember his life and celebrate his memory. 

We three cartoonists decided to make the roadtrip down from Northern New England. My friend John Klossner driving me and the great cartoonist Bill Woodman down to the Society of Illustrators for a mere 24 hours in NYC. I am exhausted, but glad we were all able to attend. Here are a few photos. Some and from me, and some were nicked from Liza Donnelly and Michael Maslin. 

Mort Gerberg, Bob Mankoff, Ed Koren.

Andrea Arroyo, Felipe Galindo, Liza Donnelly, Michael Maslin.

Roz Chast, George Booth. 

Sam Gross, Bill Woodman, Sam's daughter Michelle, Brian McConnachie.

Manhattan National Cartoonists Society Chapter Get Together June 16, 2017

NYC: Friday night was a terrific time on the Upper West Side. The Manhattan chapter of the National Cartoonists Society was at the apartment of Rube Goldberg's granddaughter. I got to catch up with some many of my friends and talk shop.

A great number of people were there. People who work for The New Yorker, Mad Magazine, GoComics, Papercutz, Barron's, the Society of Illustrators, Mad Magazine, and so many other markets were there.

Rube Goldberg's drawing board:

Friday, June 16, 2017

My Drawing for Team Cul de Sac

Above, my drawing and 3 close ups of same. Drawn for the Richard Thompson Team Cul de Sac fundraiser at Heroescon this weekend.

My thanks to Chris Sparks for the heads up. My pleasure to contribute.

Thursday, June 15, 2017