Archive supporter, Wynn Hamonic shared a real treasure with us today. This is a complete storyboard by Terry-Toons’ most unique animator, Jim Tyer. It’s a great batch of drawings. Terry-Toons art is very scarce, and complete storyboards are even scarcer.
Around 1959 Tyer did storyboards for at least three films in the format of Paul Terry’s early Aesop’s Fables cartoons. The first one, “The Tiger King” (1960) was released, the other two were unproduced. This storyboard, titled “Blood is Thicker Than Water” is particularly interesting because it includes both finished panels and roughed out ones. This gives us a chance to examine Tyer’s working process and see how he planned out his compositions. At Terry-Toons, storyboards were done on full sheets of animation paper and attached to the wall by binder clips. You can see Carlo Vinci and Connie Rasinski pitching a board at Terry-Toons in this photo…
It appears that Tyer swept through the board quickly with blue pencil first, roughing in the basic compositions and poses. Then he (or his assistant) went back and began to tighten up the drawings in black pencil over the top of his roughs.
The cartoon was evidently designed for fairly limited animation. It would even have worked well as an animatic in the style of the earliest Crusader Rabbit cartoons. The story is told primarily in voice over narration- see the breakdown of the VO script at the top. Tyer’s amazing expressions and fun designs make the whole thing work beautifully.
I’d like to thank Wynn Hamonic for giving Animation Resources the opportunity to digitize this important piece of Terry-Toons history for our permanent collection. Enjoy the genius of Jim Tyer!
This posting is part of the online Encyclopedia of Cartooning under the subject heading, Animation.