Friday, April 28, 2023

Ted Richards 1946 - 2023


Underground cartoonist Ted Richards, creator of "Dopin' Dan" comix and a member of the Air Pirates underground comix group which challenged Disney, died on April 21, 2023. The cause was lung cancer according to his daughter, Miranda Lee Richards. 


 From The Daily Cartoonist:

"Ted Richards was one of the funniest and greatest of the 1970s underground cartoonists. 

"His most famous characters were Dopin’ Dan, E. Z. Wolf, and The Forty Year Old Hippie.

"Ted never fit in with the sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll aspect of underground comix; well, maybe the drugs (mostly marijuana). Ted’s comix were funny, some of the funniest of the underground era, with a great comic art style.

"After getting a start in Cincinnati in 1969 Ted migrated to San Francisco hooking up with the hostile, anti-establishment Berkeley Tribe (and meeting Bobby London there). Later in 1970 Ted and Bobby met with Shari Flenniken and the Disney Corp-obsessed Dan O’Neill at the Sky River Festival a bit east of Seattle Washington, and soon after Gary Hallgren. These talents joined to form the famous Air Pirates.

"Throughout the early 1970s, the high times of the comix industry, Ted contributed to a number of anthology comix books as well as his own Dopin’ Dan books. 

"By the late 1970s the 'comix' scene was dying. Ted found a place in Skateboarder Magazine with a Mellow Cat page from 1978 – 1981. From there he segued into computer software designing while still dipping a brush into an ink bottle on occasion."
Memorial services are pending. 


Wednesday, April 26, 2023

From the Dick Buchanan Files: Certified Vintage Gag Cartoons 1940 - 1961

It's another rainy day here in the Northeast, and a gloomy one. Here to lift the darkness, is gag cartoon curator Dick Buchanan, with another twenty lovely moldy old magazine cartoons culled from his massive Cartoon Clip File located in Greenwich Village. Thanks, and take it away, Dick:


  (1940 – 1964)

Working remotely (as always) your friendly crackpot Cartoon Clip File curator has been hard at work exercising his authority under the Old Joke Protection Act of 1953.  Which means more gag cartoons have been designated as Certified Vintage.  Here are a few . . .

1.  TON SMITS.  This Week Magazine  September 22, 1962.

2.  W.F. BROWN.  1000 Jokes Magazine  March – May, 1959.


3.  LESLIE STARKE.  The Saturday Evening Post  October 30, 1954.

4.  JEFF KEATE.  Collier’s  October 5, 1946.

5.  CLYDE LAMB.  American Legion Magazine  September, 1954.

6.  VIRGIL PARTCH.  Collier’s September 15, 1946.

7.  FRED LUNDY.  American Legion Magazine  November, 1963.

8.  MARTHA BLANCHARD.  The Saturday Evening Post  July 31, 1948.

9.  ED NOFZIGER.  American Magazine  September, 1950.

10.  BURR SHAFER.  American Magazine  February, 1951.

11.  DONALD REILLY.  The Saturday Evening Post  September 5, 1964.

12.  AL ROSS.  For Laughing Out Loud  January – March, 1965.

13.  BEN WICKS.  1000 Jokes Magazine  December, 1963-February, 1964.

14.  VAHAN SHIRVANIAN.  This Week Magazine  September 6, 1959.

15.  CHON DAY.  Collier’s  November 30, 1946.

16.  IRWIN CAPLAN.  Collier’s  September 22, 1945.

17.  GARDNER REA.  Collier’s September 15, 1945.

18.  HERB GREEN.  Argosy Magazine  May, 1964.

19.  TOM HENDERSON.  The Saturday Evening Post  September 19, 1953.

20.  GEORGE PAPP.  Collier’s  December 14, 1940.

- Edited from a blog entry originally published April 2, 2021.

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Pop Culture Retro Interview with Legendary Cartoonist Sergio Aragonés

Disney's Ike Eisenmann and author, Jonathan Rosen chat with legendary cartoonist Sergio Aragonés. Sergio discusses learning from Marcel Marceau, how he got his start in MAD Magazine, his popular comic, Groo the Wanderer, and much more!


Sunday, April 23, 2023

Ed Emberley's Home for Sale


The home of children's book author/illustrator Ed Emberley is for sale



Here's Ed's son Michael Facebook posting:

My family home, in Ipswich, MA is currently for sale. My parents lived there continuously for 60 years. I was 2 when we moved, but I remember no other home. Parts of the house date back to about 1650. As I tell my friends in my adopted home in Ireland - it’s more like a character in a story than simply a dwelling.
My father, Ed Emberley, created all of his books in this house. The downstairs front room to the left was his first work space, then he moved upstairs for most of his work. Later using a back room (son Michael's old bedroom) as well , when he started creating digital art. 
Complicated feelings, of fondness, and melancholy. It’s a special place. And such a wonderful location, so close to the river, walk to town, and right on dog walking boulevard.


Friday, April 21, 2023

New England College Will Close Manchester Campus


Lowell Hall in Manchester, NH. This one of the buildings that comprise the Manchester campus of the New England College, where the New Hampshire Institute of Art and Design is located. I have been teaching college comics/illustration classes on an adjunct basis since 2019.

New England College will move its Manchester, NH art school, the New Hampshire Institute of Art and Design, to its home campus in Henniker, NH effective next month. The announcement was made on social media a week ago. I found out a day later through a colleague.

The New Hampshire Institute of Art and Design was bought by New England College just before I was asked to join its Comic Arts program as adjunct faculty in 2019. 

While I have been asked back to teach for Fall 2024, which I like to do, the commute is an hour more. So ... I don't know if I'll be coming back.

Regardless, it's been a great time. In the past four years, I've created a number of courses, including their History of Comics class, as well as the History of Political Cartoons, and I have retooled the History of Illustration. 

My one great concern when I was asked to do this was, Will I like the students? I don't know what a 20 year old is like! But they are all talented and nice people. And I was able to ask some of my colleagues and friends to come along and Zoom with us, live, to talk about their work in comics, political cartoons and illustration. This included wonderful professional cartoonists, best selling YA authors/artists, Pulitzer Prize and RFK, Jr. Prize winning political cartoonists, and art directors. I am thankful for their participation and sharing of their valuable time.

Thursday, April 20, 2023


Hello Dollinks! Here are a few hi res scans from the tiny KATZENJAMMER KIDS paperback collection of Sunday strips by Joe Musial. It's copyright 1970 by King Features.

THE KATZENJAMMER KIDS were created by Rudolph Dirks who, at William Randolph Hearst's request, nicked them from the German cartoon MAX AND MORITZ. 

"The strip relates in the frenzied style the war-to-the-death carried on by Hans and Fritz against any form of authority, whether parental, educational, or governmental."

I had this paperback when I was a kid and studied it. It was lost and so, last week, I bought a copy off of eBay. Such wonderful manic writing and terrific cartooning by Musial. Reading it now for the first time since I was nine years old, I was surprised at how many of the gags I remembered. 

Obviously, these are great fun (if not politically correct) to read out loud. 

That last panel, where Hans and Fritz kiss with a "smak!!" is funny and chilling and perverse at the same time.


- Edited from an original blog entry of February 26, 2019.

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Maurice Horn 1931 - 2022


Just reported via The Daily Cartoonist: comics historian Maurice Horn passed away on December 30, 2022. He was 91. 


Maurice Horn is a French-American comics historian, author, and editor, considered to be one of the first serious academics to study comics. He is the editor of The World Encyclopedia of Comics, The World Encyclopedia of Cartoons, and 100 Years of American Newspaper Comics.

He was born in France. Horn was a writer in the 1950s, then emigrated to the United States, looking for more lucrative work.


Returning frequently to France, he was a member of the 1960s groups Club Bande Dessinée and SOCERLID ("Société civile d’études et de recherché des littératures dessinées"), which championed the idea of comics as "the ninth art" and worthy of academic study.[2] Horn was instrumental in organizing three important exhibitions of comics art in the late 1960s and early 1970s:[2]

Horn's two-volume The World Encyclopedia of Comics, first published in 1976, focused on American and European comics (although not exclusively), with extensive biographical notes and publication histories.[5] It was one of the first and most comprehensive resources of its kind,[6] and spawned seven volumes. A complete edition was published in 1997 (and updated again in 1999), and included the work of fifteen contributors.[7]

The Daily Cartoonist:

It was Maurice Horn’s massive World Encyclopedia of Comics in 1976 that put his name front and center.

Though not without some controversy since he, as editor, changed some accounts to suit his debatable interpretations of characters without advising or informing the contributors who wrote the original entries.

And, as the first of its kind, there were the inevitable errors.

But even so it was a monumental leap forward in the publishing of comics history.

From Kim A. Munson’s How the French Kickstarted the Acceptance of Comics as an Art Form in the US: the Books and Exhibitions of Maurice Horn:

After the NYCC exhibition, Horn shifted his focus to writing, editing and publishing. In 1974, he began production on The World Encyclopedia of Comics, which became a bestseller and the book he is most known for. The July 1976 hardcover first edition is 790 pages with 850 illustrations, and contains over 1,200 entries, contributed by historians from the Philippines, US, Italy, Germany, Spain, UK, Canada, France, Japan, Yugoslavia, and Australia. According to WorldCat, Chelsea House (New York) published 69 editions of the encyclopedia between 1976 and 1999. Horn told me that this number represents over 200,000 copies sold worldwide. The World Encyclopedia was substantially updated in 1997.

Horn told me that the encyclopedia made so much money from its royalties that he bought an apartment at One Fifth Avenue, an Art Deco landmark, built in 1927 by Harvey Wiley Corbett, which he eventually sold. On publication, The World Encyclopedia got good reviews as a literary work in The New York Times, The New York Times Book Review, and The Chicago Daily News. As for its practical use, the reviews were mixed; the book became both an indispensable reference and a source of frustration as knowledgeable fans and historians identified inaccuracies in many of the entries. Some people expecting a reference work to have a more neutral voice objected to the strong criticism put forth by a few of the contributors. However we look at it now, The World Encyclopedia was a major undertaking and the first work of its kind.


Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Cartoonists' Exchange Character Creator and Laugh Finder

Here is the "Comic Character Creator" from the Cartoonists' Exchange in Pleasant Hill, Ohio. It's Exclusive, Original and "It's Fun!"

This is just a fraction of the instructional materials produced by the Cartoonists' Exchange, one of the then-many cartooning correspondence schools around during the 20th century.

It's obvious that you spin the thing a certain number of times. There are 16 variations for each facial component (head, nose, ears, etc.). There must be a booklet that tells you what each element is. (Is head #2 football-shaped? Are ears #16 big and floppy? Are eyes #8 cross-eyed? And what is EX. 1 and EX. 2 and so on? ) This booklet is, unfortunately, missing.

One of my favorite items is the 1937 Cartoonists' Exchange Laugh Finder. Here's my copy of it:


This is an oversized (11" x 16") idea generator for those times when you need help. It opens up to a giant 22" x 32! I first blogged about this lovely item back in 2002 when I was the Andertoons guest blogger for a week, but the photos have been trashed. So, here it is again, with the photos restored:
OK, as you know, a question cartoonists are often asked is, "Where do you get your ideas?" This fellow:

Esquire cartoonist Dan A. Runyan figured out a way to answer that question and make a buck doing it. He developed the "Laugh Finder." The "Laugh Finder" is a Depression-era "computer" for aspiring cartoonists I recently came across on eBay.

From the cover: 

"The Laugh Finder is a collection of the fundamental sources of humor that keep repeating themselves in cartoons.... With this comprehensive collection of cartoon fundamentals, the variety of combinations you can create from them is almost infinite. You simply spin for your combinations." 

Who needs to write gags? Who could resist?

It opens up like this ...

... revealing long lists of characters, places, accessories -- and the spinner that you use to put all the elements together:

So, by following the directions, I have all the elements I need! Hmm. I spin the dial to get my characters (dinosaur, party guest), an accessory (door) and a "basics of humor" situation (embarrassment):

So much fun!
A few related links showcasing Cartoonists' Exchange publications:

The Pocket Cartoon Course from Mike Lynch Cartoons

Lou Brooks' Museum of Forgotten Art Supplies

-- This has been an edited edition of a 9/2/08 blog entry

Monday, April 17, 2023

Ed Koren 1935 - 2023



New Yorker cartoonist Ed Koren passed away at the age of 87 on Friday, April 14th in his home in Brookfield, VT.  Curtis Koren, his wife, said the cause was lung cancer. 

Mr. Koren's fantastic, furry creatures of an indeterminate species, spoofed human behavior in The New Yorker for six decades. Over 1,100 of his cartoons were published in The New Yorker.


The New York Times:

"With Charles Addams, James Thurber and Saul Steinberg, Mr. Koren was one of the most popular cartoonists in The New Yorker’s long love affair with humor. To connoisseurs, his bristling pen-and-ink characters, with or without captions, were instantly recognizable — nonconfrontational humans and a blend of fanged crocodile and antlered reindeer who poked fun at a society preoccupied with fitness fads (bike-riding), electronic gadgets (cellphones) and pop psychology."





New Yorker cartoon editor Emma Allen:

"In May, 1962, The New Yorker made the excellent choice to accept its very first Koren cartoon: a bedraggled writer, laboring at a typewriter, wearing a sweatshirt emblazoned with the word 'SHAKESPEARE.' Despite the success that followed—when 'Star Wars' came out, the Washington Post likened its alien cantina drinkers to 'an Edward Koren cartoon . . . sprung to life'—one sensed that Ed returned to the drawing board prepared to go twelve rounds with the Muses. Send a kind word, and he’d likely respond with something like 'The pencil is encouraged and will now run on the paper until it has accomplished its always uncertain path.' It’s terrible to think that the pencil is now laid down."

Michael Maslin interviewed Ed Koren upon the occasion of his sixty years as a New Yorker contributor:

MM: Here’re two quotes from you, from very different times, that fit in here. One’s from 1983, and the other much later, 2010. but I feel they’re related: 

You said you “develop cartoons by instinct,” and in the other you asked: “How do you seize the moment.”  Cartoonists have some kind of instinct to recognize at that very moment that we should grab something.  

EK: And to structure them so that the timing is just right. The caption for one thing, or setting up a situation. For instance, an idea came to me the other day, and I thought that could be funny, but I have to figure out how to do it. How to really make it funny, and not mundane. What physical moment should it be put in? And how the caption should work: frontwards, backwards? The most important surprise line in front, the back, the middle? On and on and on and on — the decisions. But once you get a start, it’s kind of easier to try and figure it out that way, kind of knowing where you want to go, but you’re not quite sure how. And so working these out is exactly what you’re talking about. It’s all very personal —  what you think is the most effective way of conveying what you want to convey. 


Dick Buchanan shares a couple of Ed Koren cartoons that are rarely seen:

"As we know, many New Yorker cartoonists, at one time or another, would stop by the offices of 1000 Jokes Magazine and sell them cartoons which had fallen through the cracks of the major magazines. Edward Koren was no exception.  Thought you might be able to use these from 1964 which appeared in For Laughing Out Loud and 1000 Jokes Magazine."

Thanks, Dick. Here they are:


From his biography at his site:

"Edward Koren has long been associated with the The New Yorker magazine, where he has published over 1000 cartoons, as well as numerous covers and illustrations. He has also contributed to many other publications, including The New York Times, Newsweek, Time, G.Q., Esquire, Sports Illustrated, Vogue, Fortune, Vanity Fair, The Nation and The Boston Globe. His illustrated books include 'How to Eat Like a Child,' 'Teenage Romance' and 'Do I Have to Say Hello' (all by Delia Ephron), 'A Dog’s Life' by Peter Mayle, 'Pet Peeves' by George Plimpton, and 'The New Legal Seafoods Cookbook' by Roger Berkowitz and Jane Doerfer. 'Thelonius Monster’s Sky-High Fly Pie' was published in 2006, 'Oops' by Alan Katz in 2008, 'How to Clean Your Room' in 2010 and 'Poems I Wrote When No One Was Looking' by Alan Katz in 2011. He has also written and illustrated books for children, 'Behind the Wheel,' and 'Very Hairy Harry.' He has also published six collections of cartoons which first appeared in The New Yorker, the most recent being 'The Hard Work of Simple Living.'"

In addition to his books and gallery shows, Mr. Koren was also a volunteer firefighter for the Brookfield Volunteer Fire Department, where he once served as captain

 From his Wikipedia:

"Koren received a Doctor of Humane Letters Degree from Union College, and received a John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship in Fine Arts in 1970. He received the Vermont Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts in 2007. Koren was appointed Vermont's second Cartoonist Laureate in 2014, serving in the position until 2017."


Daily Cartoonist

Vermont’s Seven Days