Archive for the ‘Comics’
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I was writing about my MAD mood recently, and it prompted me to buy my sons MAD’s Greatest Artists:The Completely MAD Don Martin which he promptly fell in love with (who wouldn’t?). Which, in turn, prompted me to remember fondly this unique spot (called “A Day in the Life”) my agency did for VH1 in 1990 that Don illustrated.”A Day in the Life”
VH-1: Video Hits One
Written by Bill Burnett
Illustrated by Don Martin
Animation production by JJ Sedelmaier for The Ink Tank
Sound design and agency production by Tom Pomposello
Executive Producers: Alan Goodman & Fred Seibert
Agency: Fred/Alan, Inc., NY
I’ve been in a MAD frame of mind recently because of our friend, producer David Levin, who introduced us all to the magazine’s inner workings on Pulp Secret last year, and brought by a couple of his MADdest friends (editors actually) to talk a few weeks ago. Meeting them put me into the frame of mind to read David Hadju’s The Ten-Cent Plague about the repressive moment in the 1950s when states across America actually tried to censor books (in this case, comic books).
So much of it revolved around the mythology of EC comics’ and MAD’s publisher William Gaines that I started routing around for something to read on the history of MAD. Unfortunately no one’s seen fit to research anything resembling an objective view, so I settled for this 1972 virtually authorized biography. Which made me try and find one of his obituaries that so influenced me on the eve of my joining Hanna-Barbera and the cartoon business full time in June 1992.
Why such an influence? I was new to the cartoon business, never having had anything to do with making anything with characters or stories (I’d produced quite a few animated commercials), and I was scared to death because I had no idea what to do. Then I read one of Gaines’ mythologizing quotes and I started to feel like, even if I couldn’t begin to be the kind of eccentric character he was, maybe I’d have a chance.
“My staff and contributors create the magazine,” Gaines said. “What I create is the atmosphere.”
Ed Ludvigsen & Brian Belanger came by on Friday to introduce themselves. Ed’s an art director for an online agency in Westchester, New York, and Brian’s a comic book artist and writer in Manchester, New Hampshire. They pitched us their project Skullduggery.
Thanks to Brian for kind permission to post his artwork.
If ever a book title caught its subject well, it’s Artist in Motion, by the incredible Steve Rude. I was lucky enough to spend some time on projects with Steve back in the day (I was trying to develop Mike Baron & Steve’s Nexus as an animated feature film at Hanna-Barbera) and never have I been with an artist more dedicated to the forward trajectory of his art, and all art that he loves and respects. You’ll get a great sense of that enthusisam in this art book, which surveys 20 years of his career in comics and painting. Steve’s one of those rare artists that’s worth listening to as well as looking at, so don’t just skip by the text. You’ll get a chance to learn some of what he taught me.
You’ll be able to catch Steve in person at this year’s major comic cons, including New York in April.