Saturday, March 26, 2011
Labels: Herriman's LA Examiner Cartoons
Friday, March 25, 2011
Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: William M. Goodes
|Professor Bughunter, probable one-shot, 3/23/02|
William M. Goodes
Artist and Illustrator Dies at His Home in Roxborough
William M. Goodes, an artist, whose original ideas and skill in sketching won him wide fame as a comic illustrator and cartoonist, died yesterday after a week's illness of uremia at his home in Roxborough.
He was born sixty-three years ago in Portage County, Ohio, while his parents, who were Philadelphians, were living there. They returned to this city with William when he was two years old. Mr. Goodes began his career as a lithographer, and while following that line took courses in the Academy of Fine Arts. Soon after he was placed in charge of the art department of the John D. Avil Company. While connected with the Historical Publishing Company he illustrated the Henry M. Stanley book, "African Jungles." He also illustrated Bill Nye's last work, "Comic History of England." For a time he was associated with George V. Hobart when the playwright was writing comic sketches.
For twenty years he contributed the comic sketches for Lippincott's Magazine. Other publications to which Mr. Goodes was a frequent contributor included Puck, Judge, Harpers' Round Table, Texas Siftings and the Century. He followed his profession until his last illness.
Mr. Goodes when a young man was a member of "the State Fencibles" and served with that command in the Pittsburgh riots. He is survived by a widow, Mrs. Margaret E. Goodes; a son, Edward A. Goodes, and a brother, Thomas A. Goodes.
Labels: Ink-Slinger Profiles
Thursday, March 24, 2011
Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Robert E. Brook
According to Edan Hughes' Artists in California, 1786-1940, Brook was a resident of Los Angeles from 1900 to 1906, and exhibited in the Los Angeles Press Artists Association in 1906. The Los Angeles Herald reported, on December 12, that the exhibition would be at the Alexandria Hotel parlors on December 18, 19 and 20. The artists included Arthur Dodge, E.E. McDowell, George A. Grant, A.L. Ewing, Clarence Pugsley, J. Coxen, Oscar M. Bryan, H.J. Turner, R.C. Springer, George Herriman, E.O. Sayer, Jr., A.S. Wheeler, Henry Ivene Hawxhurst, L.T. Johnston, R.P. Strathearn, J.D. Johnson, R. Gale and George Baker.
Brook was on the move in California and Hawaii then headed east, and settled in Baltimore. On February 5, 1911, the Baltimore American reported the exhibition of cartoons at the Charcoal Club.
Exhibition of Cartoons
Work of Thorndike and Brook at Charcoal Club.
The first of a series of exhibition of cartoons by artists was opened in the rooms of the Charcoal Club last night. The opening exhibition is devoted to the works of Mr. Willis H. Thorndike, whose cartoons have appeared daily in The American for some years, and those of Mr. R. Brook, of the Star. The exhibitions will continue all this week….
Gold-Art Specialty Co., Baltimore, [10358
Officer Crust: by R. Brook. [Grotesque statuette of policeman with hands clasped, leaning forward laughing.] © 1 с June 5. 1912; G 41005.
Brook's passing was reported in the American on September 12, 1918:
Death Ends Career of Robert E. Brook
Was Creator of Officer Crust In The American—His Cartoons Pleased Thousands.
After a prolonged illness of nervous trouble, Robert E. Brook, creator of Officer Crust and a number of other cartoons which appeared in The American and The Star, died Tuesday [September 10] at Spring Grove State Hospital, Catonsville. Several months ago he suffered a breakdown. He received treatment at the Phipps clinic and later went to Spring Grove. He was born at Tucson, Ariz., and is a son of Harry Brook, an Englishman, who is at present editorial writer on the Los Angeles (Cal.) Times.
Brook's father drifted out to the great West in the early eighties and started a newspaper in Tombstone, Ariz., which he called the Epitaph. In spite of its name, it was a very live sheet. Young Brook was nursed by an Indian squaw, who carried him around in a blanket. At an early age he was taken to Los Angeles, Cal., and placed in school much to his disgust but after a brief sojourn in the halal of knowledge he started his active career as a bill peddler for a tea house. Then he became a helper in a candy factory. His first job on a newspaper was with the Los Angeles Herald, where he worked in the pressroom, the mailing department, stereotyping-room, the business office and, finally, in the art department as a helper, where he was put to making layouts for half-tones and the drawings of simple line pictures.
As he grew older he drifted away from the newspaper game and took a fling at the theater. For a time he was property man at the Los Angeles Opera House. Then he went on the road and became a regular stroller. Later he joined the staff of the Los Angeles Times, where he drew sport cartoons, layouts and news sketches. He left the Times very abruptly one morning at the lament suggestion of the managing editor, and after drifting about hit San Francisco and landed with the art department of The Chronicle. After leaving The Chronicle he went back to the show business as assistant property man at the Grand Opera House in Frisco. Next he struck out for Honolulu with a stock company, returning to Frisco in time for the great fire. From Frisco he went back to Los Angeles and helped build up the Press Club. Then for a time he went on a farm, learning how to raise oranges.
It was about this time he received a position with the Washington Times. His next venture was in New York in 1907, the year of the panic, but as there was very little doing he turned Southward to Philadelphia and got a berth under Pop Scholl [probably actually Paschall -- Allan] on the North American. From that paper he went with the Philadelphia Telegraph as sport cartoonist and from there to his last position with The Baltimore American and The Star. It was while working for these papers that he evolved his most popular comic strip character, Officer Crust.
Brook was a natural-born cartoonist and his advice to those aspiring to comic drawing was, "Natural ability is the most essential thing, but it must be backed up with a barrel full of experiences. Experience is the best teacher but the rates are scandalously high. Natural ability is the foundation of success in any profession. A man may be able to make a screaming caricature, but unless he is a natural story-teller he will fail as a stripper."
Brook seldom talked unless he had something to say. During his career with The American he made many friends in this city, especially among the business men who furnished him with quips for his cartoon characters.
He is survived by his father and mother, a widow (Mrs. Ora Brook, who before her marriage was a Miss Dooley of [illegible] Reisterstown road), three daughters (Katharine, Ora and Margaret Brook) and two brothers and four sisters. The funeral took place yesterday. Burial was in Western Cemetery [Baltimore].
Labels: Ink-Slinger Profiles
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Obscurity of the Day: How a Man Proposes
Take How a Man Proposes, for example. Cartoonist E.A. Bushnell penned this series with no thought in his mind about licensing possibilities or how he'd come up with a gag that worked for his feature every day for the next umpteen years. No, he just thought of a cute idea, drew as many episodes of it as he could think up, and consigned it to history. Newspaper readers in the boonies (where NEA, the syndicate responsible, was king) opened their papers on August 6 1907 not knowing what particular cartoon entertainments they might find that day, and what they did find was the first installment of this series, which then ran seven times over the span of the next three weeks, ending on the 22nd. No fuss that the delightful little series was over, just the anticipation for what might come next.
Thanks to Cole Johnson for the scans.
Obviously no longer, because just like the funnies you described, we have been lost so much of our regional culture that we're all squeezed into that cookie cutter mold, amush in a mass media murk of mediocrity.
In the 1880 census Bushnell was the youngest of three children born to Wells and Emma. The family lived in Warren, Ohio at 65 Prospect Street. Around 1899 Bushnell married Alice.
In 1900 the couple lived in Cincinnati, Ohio at 321 Pike Street. He was an artist for a newspaper. The book, Artists in Ohio, 1787-1900: A Biographical Dictionary (Kent State University Press, 2000) noted Bushnell's impact on page 135:
Editorial cartoonist, active in Cincinnati (Hamilton) during the early 1900s.
Born in Ohio in July, 1872, he played an important role in the Cincinnati
Post's successful campaign against George B. ("Boss") Cox and his political
"Timeline: A Publication of the Ohio Historical Society: Volume 4" (Ohio Historical Society, 1987) said this about Bushnell's cartoons:
...Foremost in these efforts were the biting cartoons drawn by Elmer A.
Bushnell, who looked to Thomas Nast as his inspiration. Nast, cartoonist
for Harper's Weekly, had helped topple New York City's Boss Tweed.
Bushnell caricatured Cox as everything from a corpulent magnate to a
roaring sea serpent.
According to the 1910 census, Bushnell had moved to Memphis, Tennessee, at 520 Vance Avenue. He gave his occupation as commercial artist for a newspaper. On the move again, Bushnell was a newspaper artist in Cleveland, Ohio, where the couple lived at 987 East 105th Street, as recorded in the 1920 census.
Ten years later he continued his profession in Cincinnati, Ohio, at 970 Locust Street. He was recognized in the book, Ohio Art and Artists (1932); Edna Maria Clark wrote:
A cartoonist with a wide reputation is E.A. Bushnell, who was for fifteen
years or more on the Cincinnati Post. The Cincinnati Times-Star published
his cartoons for a year or two, until his work was distributed through a
Cleveland syndicate. Florida claimed him next, and now he is retired to
free-lancing in Cincinnati. He is a very wonderful draughtsman; his cartoons
sparkle with originality and brilliancy.
The Williams' Cincinnati Directory 1936-37 listed the Bushnell's at 8 Westminster Flats. Bushnell passed away on January 27, 1939. News of his death was published in The New York Times on the 28th.
Elmer A. Bushnell
Cartoonist Formerly on Globe and Journal in New York
Cincinnati, Jan. 27 (AP)—Elmer A. Bushnell, who created Doc, a
short-eared, long-legged dog, for his cartoons a decade ago, died today
of pneumonia. He was 67 years old.
Mr. Bushnell at one time worked for The New York Globe and The New
York Journal. His widow survives.
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Obscurity of the Day: A Few Dialogues in a Minor Key
The feature, which lasted only a month, was a potpourri of gag cartoons and jokes. The writer, Charles W. Taylor, was a humorist of small note who, based on these examples, never thought up a joke he couldn't obfuscate into a few paragraphs of drivel. The cartoonist was Louis Dalrymple, one of the less gifted members of the Puck crew of the 1890s. He was destined to go insane and die in 1905.
A Few Dialogues in a Minor Key ran from January 18 to February 22 1903 in the Tribune. Thanks to Cole Johnson for the scans!
My assumption was that they played the Star Spangled Banner at the end of a performance back then, and everyone took that as their cue to vamoose. But can anyone explain what the joke is in the one about the sailor sliding down the flagstaff? That one had me scratching my head.
Monday, March 21, 2011
Obscurity of the Day: Stanley Steamer
In 1965 John Somerville took a different tack in Stanley Steamer. He chose to portray robots as cute and cuddly, and featured a happy-go-lucky little steam-powered robot in the starring role of his strip. Stanley is the creation of Mr. Fink, a sour little genius who has no end of trouble getting his robots to perform the way he wants them to.
The strip really had a lot going for it, and I'm surprised it wasn't a hit. It was syndicated by impresario Lew Little, whose stock-in-trade at the time was to pick up a strip that he liked, sell it to a few papers, and then shop it around to the major syndicates as a success story already in progress. At the same time as he was shepherding Stanley Steamer, he was doing the same with Tumbleweeds and Wee Pals, so he definitely had an eye for picking winners.
Unfortunately Stanley Steamer doesn't seem to have caught the fancy of any of the major players, and the strip, which began on November 29 1965, made it into 1966 but no farther. I don't have an end date for the strip; my latest samples are from April, but it was advertised in the 1966 E&P Syndicate Directory, so I'm assuming it lasted at least into the summer months, if not longer.
Edit: The Philadelphia Evening Bulletin ran it to the end, on November 19 1966. Thanks to the tag team of Mark and Cole Johnson for dredging that out of the memory banks and checking the microfilm!
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics
Labels: Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics
Kevin "the Bold" Kress