Archive for the ‘design’ Category

Monday, June 30th, 2014

Magazine Cartoons: The Father of the Disney Style- T. S. Sullivant

T S Sullivant

T S SullivantT S SullivantT. S. Sullivant is one of the most important cartoonists in the history of the medium. He pioneered many of the elements of anthropomorphism that we now take for granted. The general public may not be familiar with his name, but animators sure appreciate his work. (See Eddie Fitzgerald’s first article on Sullivant and his second. Also see, Andreas Deja’s blog… T.S. Sullivant Part One and Part Two) The influence of Sullivant’s animals (along with the work of Heinrich Kley…) can be seen in many of the Disney features.

Sullivant was born in 1854, and didn’t begin cartooning professionally until the age of 32. His cartoons appeared in Life and Puck during the 1890s, and in Judge around the turn of the century. William Randolph Hearst signed him to an exclusive contract in 1904, and his mastheads populated by cartoony animals appeared on the top of the Hearst comics pages until 1907. Sullivant returned to Life magazine in 1911, and remained there until his death in 1926.

Sullivant’s pen and ink style doesn’t really suit itself for reproduction on a computer screen, but I have made large versions available of all of these images. Just click on the picture to see it larger.

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Monday, March 24th, 2014

Animation: John Sutherland’s Rhapsody of Steel

John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel

Today we scanned a read-along storybook adaptation of John Sutherland’s industrial film, Rhapsody of Steel (1959). Sutherland’s studio was very influential in the mid-1950s, employing some of the best designers in the business. This film is no exception. Legendary stylists Eyvind Earle (Sleeping Beauty, Pigs is Pigs) and Maurice Noble (Duck Dodgers, How The Grinch Stole Christmas) collaborated on Rhapsody of Steel, and you can see evidence of both their hands everywhere in these pages. (Earle in the landscapes and textures, Noble in the bold primary and secondary colors…)

Time Magazine said of this film…

Rhapsody of Steel, a 23-minute animated cartoon that cost $300,000, is one of those rare industrial films with enough specific quality and general interest to play the commercial circuits. In the next few months it will be shown as an added attraction in several thousand U.S. movie houses. Made by former Disney Staffer John Sutherland, Rhapsody sets out to tell a sort of child’s history of steel from the first meteor that ever hit the earth to the first manned rocket that leaves it, and most of the time Moviemaker Sutherland proves a slick entertainer and a painless pedagogue. Unhappily, the music of Oscar-Winning Dmitri Tiomkin, who is probably the world’s loudest composer, bangs away on the sound track like a trip hammer. But the picture’s pace is brisk, its tricks of animation are better than cute, and the plug, when the sponsor slips it in on the final frame, is modestly understated: “A presentation of U.S. Steel.”

I have included a Quicktime of Rhapsody of Steel at the bottom of this post, and you can find many other John Sutherland fIlms at Archive.org. This book suffers from little tiny pictures and oceans of white space, so I’ve enlarged a bunch of the pictures so you can see them better.

John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
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John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
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John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel
John Sutherland Rhapsody of Steel

Courtesy of Animation Resources supporter, Kevin Kidney, here
is a video of the film for you to view…

Rhapsody of Steel (Sutherland/1959)
(Quicktime 7 / 22 minutes / 50.5 megs)

Here’s a great post by Michael Sporn on Eyvind Earle.

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

Animated CartoonsAnimated Cartoons

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