Thursday, December 31, 2009

Sunday, December 27, 2009

On the First, Second and Third Day

The Twelve Days of Christmas are traditionally the festive days beginning on Christmas Day and ending on January 5, the day before the Feast of the Epiphany. The song, of course, demonstrates that gift giving can be a continuous activity during this time.

Thirty-eight years ago today, this daily appeared in the paper and really stood out as pretty unusual for Pogo at that time. I was a month away from shipping out to boot camp, and yet there I was, still clipping daily Pogos for posterity. Looking at this and the next few clippings in their original printed size, I'm surprised how small they are, and how hard to see the details, even looming in close.

Kelly put such loving detail into each panel that I'm pleased I can now scan these at much larger size and scrutinize them as they deserve to be seen.

Come back over the next few days to see this played out in its entirety.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Adventures of Peter Wheat

We Walt Kelly fans received a wonderful Christmas present from fellow Kelly fan OtherEric. He recently took ownership of issue #33 of The Adventures of Peter Wheat and immediately freed it from that devilish encapsulating slab that has insidiously infiltrated the industry of imagination. And OtherEric very generously offered to let me premier his scans here (with my quick processing), before he posted them to join other great scans of his at Thanks OtherEric and Happy Holidays to you!

This 16 page promotional comic features characters created by Walt Kelly. This was a very successful promotion for the Peter Wheat Bread and Bakers Associates. The book was printed by the main headquarters and than sold to regional bakeries or stores who than had their names imprinted on the book. The book was published from 1948 until 1956. There are 66 known issues as well as several fun books in the series. The fun books contained puzzles and coloring pages. Walt Kelly set the tone for the promo and then worked on the first 35 issues. He also did several other giveaways and games for the company. (quoting Diamond Galleries)

Adventures of Peter Wheat - 2

Adventures of Peter Wheat - 3

Adventures of Peter Wheat - 4

A rare treat is this look at an original wrapper for Peter Wheat bread, with drawings of Peter Wheat that must be unique for using Walt Kelly art on point of sale packaging:

Thanks again, from all of us Walt Kelly fans, to OtherEric for this great Christmas present!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Day in the Morning

Reindeers is Mythological Beasts

So, this is the following Sunday strip after the previous post's strip, and again is one of my favorites, just for the coloring, if nothing else. It's dark and rich and really cool for the red moon rising that changes phase, position and coloring.

And as pointed out two posts ago, it has a slight connection to a generation before, because of the architecture of the house being quite similar to the shoe house lines (disregarding the shoe) of the Mother Goose cover. Yeah yeah I know, big deal—but really, either Kelly was looking at that cover, or he had that house imprinted on his mind.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Up, Dasher! Up, Prasher! Up, Vassar an' Vixen!

All year I've been looking forward to posting this Sunday page, one of my favorites of all time. It's a Christmas present to us all, so I thought Christmas Eve was the best time to present it.

And below is the original art, as hand-water-colored by Kelly himself.

Merry Christmas to you all —
Let nothing you dismay!

Christmas with Mother Goose

This cover, which is so perfectly in tune with the story from the last post, appeared some 52 issues later down the line from that story.

But better late than never, it's a beaut of a cover.

And it ties in to the post after next, which will be from an entire generation later.

Christmas in the Shoe

From Christmas with Mother Goose (Four Color series) #201, a pretty straight Christmas message: 'Have you thought of the poor this year?'

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Mry Xms

Yet another personal Christmas card of Kelly's, internationally festive for 1960. Grundoon almost finds his words.

Love and Joy Come to You

Another Kelly Khristmas Kard, this from 1955:

Magical and Musical

Just a few more of the magical musical celebrations of the daily formats, here one from 1958.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Visit from St. Nicholas

There's been a lot of versions of this weathered old poem, but this is (I think) a genuinely funny take on it. This was published at the height (or depths) of the Cold War, but you'll love this, little Posie of Pinsk.

Visit from St. Nicholas - 2

Monday, December 21, 2009

Fly, O, fly Through the Stars

Once again, Kelly's own carol, frolicking and rollicking:

With Decorous Abandon

An unusual appearance of Kelly's critters cavorting on a cover. Newsweek Magazine in the 50s, that is.

And an inside job too: