Archive for the ‘illustration’ Category

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

Illustration: Willy Pogany’s Mother Goose

Willy Pogany's Mother Goose

One of my favorite blogs is David Apatoff’s Illustration Art. David is one of the best writers on the subject of art that I’ve read online. He’s unique because he thinks like an artist and he’s concise, two characteristics that are rare when it comes to art criticism in the blogosphere.

The other day, David posted about one of my favorite illustrators, Willy Pogany. (Read his post HERE.) You might recall that we featured Pogany on the Animation Resources site last Summer… (Willy Pogany’s Drawing Lessons) The post on Illustration Art discusses how much better Pogany’s work was when it was less embellished and more direct. I couldn’t agree more. I would add that it’s even better when it doesn’t take itself quite so seriously. A perfect example of Pogany at his absolute peak is a book that just happens to be my favorite illustrated children’s book, Willy Pogany’s Mother Goose.

Pogany's Mother GoosePogany's Mother GooseI’m afraid that viewing this book on the web puts you at a distinct disadvantage. This is one of those books that expresses itself beyond just the images. The size and weight of the book, the feel of the paper, the proportion of text blocks and margins, and the counterpoint in the layout of opposing pages all contribute to the powerful impression this book makes on the reader. The best way I can describe the feeling of reading this book is that each turn of the page is like revealing a new surprise.

From a design standpoint this book was revolutionary, because in 1928 when it was first published, the norm for illustrated books was to have uniform text blocks filling the bulk of the pages with an occasional hand tipped and tissue protected color plate. Pogany breaks all those conventions and makes every single page a fully illuminated illustration. I think it could be argued that this is one of the very first modern children’s books. The watercolors are rendered quickly in a deceptively simple style, but they’re packed with a million clever design ideas and tremendous spontaneity.

I’m afraid this is one book that I can’t afford a clean first edition copy of. The copy I scanned was battered and worn. I’ve done extensive Photoshopping to remove smudges and creases from the many decades of abuse by tiny fingers, and I’ve done my best to maintain the relative scale and basic compositions of the page spreads. I hope you enjoy this book as much as I do.

Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose
Willy Pogany's Mother Goose

One last image (racially insensitive)

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

IllustrationIllustration

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

Wednesday, July 27th, 2016

Magazine Cartoons: Jack Davis (1924-2016)

Jack Davis Cartoon

Comics lost one of its greatest caricaturists and draftsmen today… Jack Davis.

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, July 1st, 2016

Illustration: Mary Blair’s Little Verses

Mary Blair Little Verses

Mary Blair has become well known in the past few years for her concept work on Disney’s classic animated features of the forties and fifties, but two of her masterpieces remain unavailable for viewing… one is the set of murals she designed at the entrance to Tomorrowland in Disneyland, which were covered up several years ago by a Star Wars-esque plastic wall covering that was supposed to look futuristic… and the other masterpiece is her Golden Book titled, "Little Verses", which has been out of print for over 40 years.

Originally serialized in the children’s magazine, "Highlights" in the early fifties, these paintings were issued as an oversized Golden Book in the early 60s. This particular Golden Book is one of the most sought after titles by collectors. Rita Street was kind enough to loan a copy to be be digitized for the Archive’s image database. I’ve done a little Photoshopping to remove the text, so you can see the paintings unobstructed.

Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger
Mary Blair Little Verses
Click to see larger

Thanks for reading. Please tell your friends about great posts like this at Animation Resources.

Stephen Worth
Director
Animation Resources

IllustrationIllustration

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