Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Sketches from CARTOONING FOR EVERYBODY by Lawrence Lariar


Here are some sketches from CARTOONING FOR EVERYBODY by Lawrence Lariar, copyright 1941 by Crown Publishing.

Above: Lawrence Lariar self portrait.

Lawrence Lariar was a cartoonist, a cartoon editor for PARADE and LIBERTY, a novelist and one of the most prolific authors of "How to Cartoon" books. He edited the long-running BEST CARTOONS OF series of books from 1942 to 1971. He died in 1981.

If you are building a shelf of books about cartooning, it's inevitable you'll run into a Lariar book. Thanks to him, we have many gag cartoonists' work between hardcovers that may have otherwise turned into dust after being published in the throwaway magazine medium.

Here are some sketches by Lariar, and a couple of colleagues. Unlike his other, later books, Lariar emphasizes the value of sketching and doodling for a number of pages. The nice thing about these sketches is that they look as vibrant and full of life as ever. He's right: sketching from life helps you cartoon.

Above: a page from illustrator and cartoonist Greg D'Allessio's sketchbook. (He was married to cartoonist Hilda Terry for 55 years.)

Above: spots by John Groth (1902-88). I love how loose he works. Loose and confident.

"John Groth made a career as a painter and illustrator by focusing on sports and war. He captured the action-packed scenes by witnessing the events first-hand and sketching his experiences. Groth used a style technique called 'speed line,' in which he sketched his subjects using rough, unperfected lines and filled the lines in with watercolors. Upon describing his technique, Ernest Hemingway, whom Groth spent time with during World War II, wrote, “None of us understood the sort of shorthand he sketched in. the men would look at the sketches and see just a lot of lines. It was a great pleasure to find what fine drawings they were when we got to see them.”

"He also was a artist-correspondent during the Korean and Vietnam wars. Groth was also the Art Director for Esquire magazine."

 Above two pages again by John Groth "with no preliminary pencil understructure."

Above: cartoonist Jack Kabat with some freehand fanciful doodles.

Above: a sketch from Lariar's sketchbook that he sold to the New Yorker as a spot drawing.

Above and below: some more finished sketches of middle-aged women and kids. "Study these doodles and originate a few."

My thanks to my friend, the one and only Don Orehek, for passing along this great book. Thanks, Don!



The New Yorker: Bill Griffith on his mother's affair with Lawrence Lariar, which became the subject of his graphic memoir, “Invisible Ink: My Mother’s Love Affair with a Famous Cartoonist.” 


-- Edited from a previous blog entry dated August 22, 2011. 

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