Archive for the ‘illustration’ Category

Monday, March 3rd, 2014

Magazine Cartoons: Jack Davis

Jack Davis Cartoon

A while back, Will Finn, in his excellent blog small room wrote about the decline in drawing quality of Chuck Jones’ later work for the animation art market. He offers an interesting theory that perhaps Jones’ strength lay in his depiction of personality in motion, and when he chose to focus on static images for the limited edition cel market, his work lost its energy. The fickle nature of the creative spirit is better discussed by artists than by archivists, so I’m not going to add to what Will has said. But I’m going to offer an example from the comic world of a similar nature… Jack Davis.

Please note that I’m focusing on Davis at his peak in this post. When Davis was “on” no one could top him for draftsmanship, composition or energy. If you are interested in looking into how his work occasionally runs hot and cold, see David Apatoff’s insightful article, Counting To Nine.

Jack Davis Cartoon

Jack Davis was a cartoonist from a very early age. His first published work appeared in Tip Top Comics in 1936. He was twelve years old at the time. In 1949, he packed up and moved from Atlanta to New York City, where he was hired by EC Comics to draw for The Vault of Horror and Two-Fisted Tales. At EC, Davis met Harvey Kurtzman, who liked his work and used him in Mad magazine. Kurtzman and Davis also worked together on Little Annie Fanny in Playboy.

Jack Davis Cartoon

Davis went on to become one of the most sought-after illustrators and caricaturists in America. His caricatures of public figures appeared on the covers of Time magazine and TV Guide, as well as record covers, movie posters and bubble gum cards. Davis is currently one of the best-known and recognizable cartoonists in the world.

Jack Davis Cartoon

Here is an early Davis story from Mad magazine that shows his immense talents at their absolute best. Every panel of this comic is drop-dead brilliant!

KANE KEEN
Mad Magazine 1953

Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon
Jack Davis Cartoon

Many thanks to the talented cartoonist, Amir Avni for contributing the copy of "Son of Mad" from which this great story was scanned. Also thanks to the stalwart archive supporter Eric Graf for lending us record covers from his extensive collection to digitize.

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

Magazine CartoonsMagazine Cartoons

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

Jack Davis BookJack Davis BookJack Davis: Drawing American Pop Culture: A Career Retrospective is a gigantic career-spanning retrospective, between whose hard covers resides the greatest collection— in terms of both quantity and quality— of Jack Davis’ work ever assembled! It includes work from every stage of his long and varied career. Much of the material has been scanned directly from original art, showing the painterly brush strokes and pen work. Many illustrations are accompanied by preliminary drawings that demonstrate the evolution of Davis’ drawing process. Recommended!

Friday, February 21st, 2014

Illustration: Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine

Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine

Illustration by Harper Goff

Harper Goff in Coronet MagazineHarper Goff in Coronet MagazineHere’s another batch of illustration from late 40s Coronet magazines. This group of images isn’t interesting so much for their style as much as their authenticity. With a clarity of staging reminiscent of production designs for classic motion pictures, these paintings vividly show the value of careful research into period costume, props and decor. The first batch is a history of medicine by Leslie Saalburg. The last is a review of classic children’s literature by Douglass Crockwell. But the most interesting is the middle feature, Carl Sandberg’s "Blood on the Moon" illustrated by Disney imagineer, Harper Goff.

Harper Goff was born in 1911, and studied art at Chouinard Art Institute. He was an accomplished illustrator, working for Colliers, Esquire and Coronet. Goff was employed as a set designer for Warner Bros on classic films like Sergeant York, Casablanca and Captain Blood. He met Walt Disney in a model train store in London, and was invited on the spot to join the Disney staff.

Harper Goff Nautilus

Goff’s first assignment was to storyboard a True Life Adventure story dealing with undersea life, but expanded the idea into a feature film adaptation of Jules Verne’s 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. Goff’s designs for the submarine and its plush interiors were the most striking part of the film, resulting in an Oscar for Art Direction and Special Effects. Goff played banjo in the Disney studio Dixieland jazz band, "The Firehouse Five" and was the designer of the World Showcase at Epcot. He passed away in 1993.

MEDICINE ONE HUNDRED YEARS AGO
by Leslie Saalburg

Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine

SANDBURG’S BLOOD ON THE MOON
By Harper Goff

Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine

A TREASURY OF LITERARY CLASSICS
by Douglass Crockwell

Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine
Harper Goff in Coronet Magazine

Thanks to Rich Borowy for donating these great vintage magazines to Animation Resources.

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

IllustrationIllustration

This posting is part of a series of articles comprising an online exhibit spotlighting Illustration.

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

Illustration: Milo Winter’s Aesop for Children

Milo Winter Aesop's Fables

Today, I am going to introduce you to another great golden age illustrator, Milo Winter. Born in 1888 in Princeton, Illinois, Winter studied at the Chicago Art Institute. He illustrated dozens of books throughout the teens, twenties and thirties. His better known books are the ones for the Windermere series… Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, The Three Musketeers and Alice in Wonderland. Winter also served as the art director of the Childcraft series in the late 40s and early 1950s. But his greatest work was the oversize books he illustrated for Rand McNally from the late teens like the one we are featuring today.

Winter was a master of animal drawing. Check out the amazing depictions in these pages… anatomically accurate to the last detail, yet still full of personality and life. If you like this book, let me know in the comments. I have lots more from this and other Winter books if you are interested.

Milo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's Fables

Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables

Milo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables

Milo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables

Milo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables
Milo Winter Aesop's FablesMilo Winter Aesop's Fables

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

IllustrationIllustration

This posting is part of a series of articles comprising an online exhibit spotlighting Illustration.