I only had time to do some color correction on this weeks's Sunday strip, no time to fix the bleed through from the back side. But I'd rather post now than later, so here ya go (ooo, all the way from 1964, from my earliest era of cutting and saving strips).
This gathering of characters makes for a great display of cartooning.
And Kelly's understanding of bagpipes is displayed in pretty accurate sound effects (SZKWACK PWEERP) as well as Porkypine's recognition of a Dudelsak. In reality spelled slightly differently, the Dudelsack was once the most widespread bagpipe in use in Europe. Becoming almost extinct, the Dudelsack today has many players . . . including Pogo!
This is Kelly still thinking in terms of comic books with their one page wordless gags. The gag, meant for children, is mild and a variation of a Kelly favorite theme — the little guy besting the big one.
Every once in a while Kelly would drop in a wordless filler strip, looking much like his comic book art, and in fact may have been recycled from the idea pile that outlived the Dell comic book. Simplistic stuff, but Kelly makes the art delicious.
This post (and really, posts to come) are dedicated to my good cyber-friend Loren, who, in our correspondence, was instrumental in convincing me to return to regular blogging here on Whirled of Kelly. She is a young art & animation student, whose love of animation finds great inspiration in the art and writing of Kelly.
Her enthusiasm for Kelly's cartooning genius; her appreciation of my curation of this site; her encouragement of the benefit to art students and pros, animation students and pros, and enthusiasts of all kinds has persuaded me to keep up with the hard work of sourcing, scanning, cleaning and curating Kelly's wonderful work.
I've written previously of my (and other people's) recurring night-time dream of wandering into an old bookstore and finding a Pogo book that I had never seen before, though I thought I had completed my collection long ago.
In reality, that dream came true just a few years ago.
I had not made a checklist of Pogo books to check off, but I really thought that I had them all. So when I saw The Pogo Sunday Book on a dusty book shelf, I did an actual double take and poked myself to see if this was one of those dreams.
I don't think the book is all that rare, but I've not seen one before or since the day that I grabbed it up to pay only a few dollars for. It's mostly a reprint of some of the earliest Pogo Sunday strips, heavily edited and in black and white. It was only very recently that I read the intro page by Kelly to realize that the first 10 pages of the book was a 'new' story of 1956 vintage. Looking at it now, I wonder if it was slated to be a story in the Pogo comic books, or 'just' one that Kelly and his assistant George Ward did just for this book.
And it's funny. I haven't had that recurring dream since.
I show the story here for all of you, and especially for Loren!
The back cover portrays the iconic portrait of Pogo
This week we have a bonus of TWO early Sunday strips!
If you are a dedicated Pogophile you have prolly seen these, as they appear in the lovely Fantagraphics reprint series.
But I have a goal of posting as many strips that I can of the Kelly oeuvre in my lifetime, whether they've been seen a lot or not, and people relatively new to Pogo get to see a bunch of this stuff for the very first time! Yay!
This is another Easter Sunday strip that has avoided being posted until now. It's silly and sweet. I do believe that Lulu Red-Ride-An'-Hood is really Li'l Awry who played a big part in the dailies around this time of 1965 —wow— fifty years ago!
I would like to think that Miz Beaver had finally found her feller, but inter-species relationships are difficult to maintain. I love the composition of this panel with its half circle aura and the obtuse poetry, seen (heard) here out of context.
Ya never know what these boys are up to. Even in context, a person sometimes has to wonder what's going on in the Okefenokee. I constantly marvel at Kelly's line and brush work, making things solid, yet light. And again, detail such as the the bird finial is unnecessary, yet delightful.
As has been noted in the comments, a close study of Kelly's artwork is almost a tutorial in cartooning, or at least uber inspirational for cartoonists and animators. As such, we'll also attempt to gather and assemble material detailing Kelly's characters, which were numerous.
These Senator Bulfrog drawings are from 1969, and I don't know if it's a caricature of a specific senator or of the political species itself. Senator Everett Dirksen comes to mind, but he died a couple of months before these usages and didn't specifically resemble Bulfrog, except in ways of bombastic behavior.
Kelly gave Bulfrog a classic treatment with his own sort of flowery word balloons, as politicians tend to inflict upon us.
And it's always lovely to examine Kelly original art . . .
I'm relaunching a feature, starting today, showcasing individual panels and vignettes of Kelly art. These will be fairly large, fairly high-res so as to concentrate purely on the wonderbobbleness of Kelly's delineations. These kind of posts will help to randomly fill the vacuum between regular posts.
Along the way we can peer into the details that we sometimes miss when the dialogue distracts us . . . such as that little bird investigating the lunch basket.
You'll see the art in pretty good detail when you click it.
Sorry I didn't have time to fully clean this tearsheet up from its printing woes, but I got most of it done to be presentable/savable.
I'm very busy with projects, one of which is my KickStarter campaign to print a book of my art. I'm hoping some of you may want a book of my artby pledging for one. But you would have to do so by February 14, when my campaign ends. At that point, if I haven't raised the full amount of my goal to pay for printing, then I get nothing. Right now I need every last pledge I can get. Click here for details of the book, and I hope you join in!
In the meantime, Kelly is still carrying us through Spring Cleaning...
Sorry about missing last week's post. I've been totally tied up with the KickStarter campaign for a book of my artwork. I was hoping some of you might want to pledge a modest amount to get a copy of said book. One of you has. Anyone else interested? More information on the book by clicking here.
I'm feeling sad that our Friend-in-Kelly from Germany, "Hun", has excused himself from being a regular visitor here. Known initially as "Transatlantic Hun", he has loyally aided and abetted our efforts here at Whirled of Kelly, and has been a one-man cheering squad for Kelly and my dedication to Kelly.
I know there are other loyal Friends out there, but many times it's so quiet on comments that I sometimes feel like I'm posting every week just for myself and Hun. I hope I don't lose interest in this blog because of the quietude due to Hun's absence.
My name is Thom Buchanan.
I'm an artist and photographer.
People are my favorite subjects to portray in art and photos. My wife (and studio partner) has called that my 'people skills', as I've been passionately creating portrait studies for many years.
I refer to myself as a pictorialist, a combination of image-making and journalist. Images are my life.
I AM POSTING THESE IMAGES WITH THE NOTION THAT I AM DOING SO WITH A NON-PROFIT AND EDUCATIONAL 'FAIR USE' MOTIVE, REGARDING RESPECTIVE COPYRIGHTS. ANYONE DOWNLOADING AND USING THESE IMAGES FOR ANY COMMERCIAL USE WOULD BE IN VIOLATION OF RESPECTIVE COPYRIGHTS, AND DOES NOT HAVE MY APPROVAL FOR SUCH USE. PLEASE SHARE IN EDUCATION AND DON'T TRY TO MAKE MONEY FROM IT WITHOUT PROPER AUTHORITY.