July 29th, 2016

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Video Store: DOWNLOAD 1950s CEREAL COMMERCIALS Designed By Ed Benedict!

Every other month, members of Animation Resources are given access to an exclusive Members Only Reference Pack. In March 2015, they were able to download this commercial demo reel full of great cereal commercials from the 1950s. Our Reference Packs change every two months, so if you weren’t a member back then, you missed out on it. But you can still buy a copy of this great video in our E-Book and Video Store. Our downloadable DVD quality video files are specially selected from the collection of Animation Resources, and we also offer PDF e-books that are packed with high resolution images on a variety of educational subjects. If you aren’t a member yet, please consider JOINING ANIMATION RESOURCES. It’s well worth it.


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Cereal Commercial Reel

Cereal Commercial Reel
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Paul Fennell Studios (ca. early 1950s)

Paul Fennell was a pioneer of animated advertising. As early as 1939 he was animating the Kelloggs elves- Snap, Crackle and Pop, and continued to direct commercials starring the trio through the 1950s. In addition, this reel of animated cereal commercials features Cheerios spots with brilliant layouts by Ed Benedict. The design and clever limited animation of these commercials foreshadow the style of Hanna-Barbera’s early television series.

REFPACK003: CEREAL COMMERCIALS
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M4V Video File / 13:01
262 MB Download


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Cereal Commercial Reel
Cereal Commercial Reel
Cereal Commercial Reel
Cereal Commercial Reel
Cereal Commercial Reel


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Sample RefPack


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Posted by Stephen Worth @ 3:55 pm

July 29th, 2016

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Comic Strips: Jimmy Swinnerton

Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy

Today, in David Apatoff’s great blog Illustration Art I read the amazing life story of pioneer newspaper cartoonist Jimmy Swinnerton. David’s article is titled, Jimmy Swinnerton At The Dawn of Comic Strips, and it’s well worth reading.

David’s vivid history lesson inspired me to dig into our collection and post some more examples of Swinnerton’s pioneering genius. These images were donated by Jonathan Barli of Digital Funnies. Jonathan contributed thousands of high resolution scans of rare newspaper comics two years ago, and we are just now finishing up processing the images for inclusion in our database.

As I always say when I post newspaper comics… if you’re one of those folks who don’t click on the images because you don’t think it’s worth the time it takes to read… YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’RE MISSING!

Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy

Here are some magazine illustrations by Swinnerton from the late 20s…

Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy
Jimmy Swinnerton Little Jimmy

Many thanks to Jonathan Barli and David Apatoff for their great work!

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

Newspaper ComicsNewspaper Comics
This posting is part of the online Encyclopedia of Cartooning under the subject heading, Newspaper Comics.

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Posted by admin @ 1:49 pm

July 28th, 2016

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Theory: Olaf Gulbransson And The Magic of Drawing

Magic Poster

The average person who looks at a drawing doesn’t see the thought process that goes into creating it. He just sees the image. If you don’t understand the principles that go into organizing a piece of art, the act of drawing appears to be magic. That’s why moronic displays like this continue to amaze non-artists…

Any artist knows what’s going on here. The performer has simply memorized a formula that he’s playing back along with plenty of empty flourishes and simulated drama. No thought process is going on. It’s just spitting out a predetermined image in a way that impresses people who have no clue about how real paintings are created. It’s just a simple magic trick, and it’s only amazing if you don’t know how the trick is done.

Stage magic is an art form, not unlike drawing and painting in some ways. The difference between mediocre magicians and great ones isn’t the cleverness of their “tricks”… it’s the quality of their application of the fundamental techniques of magic. These principles are organized to create a convincing illusion. Here is a wonderful example of that concept in action, by the brilliant magician, Teller…

Teller’s partner, Penn Jilette narrates the fundamental principles of magic that Teller is employing to create a magical illusion of normalcy. The average person viewing these actions on the street might not see anything out of the ordinary; but when we know what’s going on, it becomes amazing. Knowing how the trick works makes the magic more amazing, not less. That’s REAL magic.

The audience is as much responsible for the effectiveness of the illusion as the performer. A skilled magician leads the viewer through a series of actions which set up a certain expectation. When something completely different happens, it seems like magic. But without the expectation, the magic would dissolve into simple random occurrences. In this next clip, Penn & Teller reveal all their secrets and still manage to create a mystifying illusion. We can see how it’s being done with our own eyes, but Penn & Teller’s compelling direction of the action and our own expectations are so strong, we’re still surprised.

It isn’t the trick… it’s the skill with which the fundamental principles are applied to create an illusion. Truly great drawing is like that.

Olaf Gulbransson

I’m going to introduce you to one of the most magical cartoonists who ever lived. Odds are, you’ve never heard of him. His name was Olaf Gulbransson, and he was a cartoonist for the German satirical magazine Simplicissimus between the early years of the 20th century and the second World War. I’ll have more biographical information on him in a later post. But today, I want to get straight to showing you his amazing drawings.

Gulbransson’s sketches are simple line drawings… but they are deceptively simple. The images have been refined down to a few quick lines, but their simplicity and directness masks a depth of thought and planning that is almost superhuman. Here are a few sketches from Gulbransson’s Spruche und Wahrheiten (Sayings and Truisms) from 1939.

Olaf Gulbransson

Olaf Gulbransson

In art, he who is not the best is nothing.

In the cartoon above, notice how a single line defines the right cuff, elbow, arm, shoulderblade and fabric tension. It is very difficult to depict a strong pose from the rear- especially when draped in a long heavy coat. But Gulbransson pulls it off dramatically in a few sweeping lines.

Olaf Gulbransson

The full belly does not recognize the empty belly.

He is a master of exaggeration and caricature.

Olaf Gulbransson

More die in the bottle than the war.

Notice how he depicts the weight of the bodies lying on the ground, along with the pull and drape of the clothing covering them. The characters are grouped into a visual hierarchy, directing the eye from the foreground up to the drunks inside the stein at the top. Even though the shapes are open and plain, the volumetric structure is clearly defined. Some artists would render an image like this out with hatching, shading and lots of detail, but Gulbransson pulls it off with a remarkable economy of line.

Olaf Gulbransson

There’s no fool like an old fool.

A single line defines a silhouette, frames a character and leads the eye through the composition. The specific attitude of the characters and the stark contrast between their sizes enhances the irony of the caption.

Olaf Gulbransson

The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

Look at all those appealing organic shapes! Again, the contrast in scale puts across the humor in the caption.

Olaf Gulbransson

In the home, usually the chicken crows and the rooster clucks.

Complementary lines of action, solid drawing, specific attitudes, strong poses, beautiful negative spaces, clear silhouettes…

Olaf Gulbransson

The lazy and the idle are like brothers.

…rhythmic line, texture, personality…

Olaf Gulbransson

A man is judged by his actions.

…clear staging, line of action, flowing shapes…

Olaf Gulbransson

When we bathe, we’re all equal.

…keen observation of real life, contrasts…

Olaf Gulbransson

The bloom must fade in time, but in the mind, the fruit never withers.

…and sophisticated interaction defining the relationship between characters. Gulbransson could do it all- sometimes he did it all in a single brilliant drawing like this one!

Olaf Gulbransson

Man thinks. God leads.

His compositions are powerful and unique…

Olaf Gulbransson

All’s well that ends well.

…and he has a clear point of view. Who else would depict life’s end with an angel lifting a baby off a chamber pot?!

mess of characters

The average person loves detail and complexity. It makes them feel like they’re getting their “money’s worth” from a drawing. But to me, putting everything across with simplicity is even more amazing. The artist can’t hide behind details piled upon details, shading and cross hatching. His idea is presented naked and clear for the world to see. It’s like Penn & Teller doing the cups and balls with transparent cups. Real magic.

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

TheoryTheory

This posting is part of a series of articles comprising an online exhibit entitled Theory.
Magazine CartoonsMagazine Cartoons

This posting is part of the online Encyclopedia of Cartooning under the subject heading, Magazine Cartoons.

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Posted by Stephen Worth @ 3:20 pm