Sunday, March 30, 2014

Wily Skill

This strip took even longer than last week's to clean up, with lots of bleed-through from the other side. I'm amazed that it cleaned up as well as it did (with a few flaws left in intentionally). It's also amazing that newsprint survives as well as it does, seeing as how flimsy and porous as it is/was.

Hogarth, the able bodied hornet, is a great little character and he certainly seems dee-licious. That's another lovely Kelly tree, and notice that even though there's very little background in this strip the panels work beautifully because the foreground compositions are so solid. And the word balloons are perfectly integrated, as always.

Basically, an ordinary strip and a work of art!

Happy Sunday, Kelly Sunday!

June 8, 1969

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Mere Striplings

So, we start with a new arc from 1969, the one that pays tribute of sorts to George Herriman's Krazy Kat. I say 'of sorts' because Kelly does it in his own round-about unique way. At that time in 1969, I wonder just how many people knew of Krazy Kat or had fond memories of the strip. I knew of the strip at that time, having collected book reprints, but I didn't know anyone else that had even heard of it.

But here we are, back in the land of great Kelly art. Beauregard is 'animated' nicely. I had to work a longer time than usual editing this strip to clean it up from bleed-through and mis-registration and newspaper defects. The following strips will have much of the same problems, and this arc goes on for quite a few weeks. 

Such a labor of love.

June 1, 1969

As per request, below is the raw scan of the above strip to show some of the deficiencies that I deal with. Looking at it you may not think it was so much. It was mostly the bleed-through that was the most time-consuming to eradicate. And personally, I don't like raw cyans and reds, so I color edit those to my liking. 

And then this story arc consists of a problem of my making — that as a teenager I originally trimmed these pages right up to and over the outer lines of the panels. So I need to amend my sin now by creating a faux margin and ink lines for the outer edges of the panels. All in all it takes a while to make the page presentable (and even then I like to leave a few rough spots here and there so that it still has that newspaper look to it).

raw scan

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

I've Launched a Campaign into the Wild Blue

I love love LOVE this image!

I've launched a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for publishing the premiere issue of Pictorial Arts Journal! The Journal will present beautiful art, including beautiful cartooning, including beautiful Kelly stuff at some point, not unlike Kelly's 100th birthday tribute that I published last August. 

Please take a look at what it's all about by clicking here. I could really use your support to publish an arts journal, edited by an artist who is utterly in love with the arts.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Bread on the Waters

It's hard to know what to say about these strips. We know that Kelly was ill during this time and it wasn't just the art that suffered along with him. Strange storyline and continuity, but at least we get an oddly placed introduction to Churchy's cousin (turtle and parrot are related because they have a beak in common?).

Notice on the November 26 strip that the first two panels had art that is almost healthy, even with the big uncolored section. The rest of the strip is, well, hmm. And November 19, well, bless Kelly's heart.

I don't have all the strips from this period, perhaps because I was busy with the army at the time and perhaps I thought they weren't worth keeping.

But now dammit,  I still say Long Live Kelly!

Next week, we go back to happier times to start an arc that has been seen before on the internet, but not with the resolution and loving edits that I give them.

Happy Sunday, Kelly Sunday!

 November 19, 1972

November 26, 1972

Sunday, March 9, 2014

290 Over Yooty Snoobers

Prior to last week's Sunday post, I have four Sunday strips leading up to it. Here I post the first two, setting up the continuity, for what it's worth. Pretty loosey goosey continuity, I must say.

In an interview, Selby Kelly stated that when he was ill, Walt Kelly drew his characters sort of tiny and scrawny, and with very minimalist backgrounds — as we see here. Looking at these strips I have a feeling that the trees in the opening panels are probably paste-ups from an earlier, healthier, time.

On the next post, we'll see that the odd pirate parrot, that looks a bit like Churchy, is Churchy LaFemme's cousin, Captain Bluebeard, the Professional Parrot Pirate. Something to look forward to.

November 5, 1972

 November 12, 1972

Sunday, March 2, 2014

The Birds and Bees Convention

Well, at this point I'm losing track of continuity. I went into the Army in early 1972, so I'm amazed I have any strips from that year or the next, as I was busy learning to lay waste to people who didn't believe in the western ways of Democracy. I think my mother may have been saving Sunday sections for me, but I'm not even sure of that. Somehow I have a selection from those last two years of Kelly's creation, but evidently not all.

Now this guy, below, is a real oddity. It has two characters that are totally unknown to me. I have a couple of Sunday strips just prior to this one, but I'm hesitant to share them with you, because they're, well, truth to tell—lame. Either Kelly was very sick, or his assistants were not very good. This pirate guy shows up in at least one of them, but with no explanation as to who he is. And that bird with Churchy's visage is just plain creepy. I seem to be missing some strips from a month or two before this, so maybe there will still be an explanation yet to be discovered (Hun, I've tried to access the archives that you've sent me, but they don't seem to cover this time period. Do you have records of this arc, however poor their condition may be?).

This particular strip seems solidly Kelly, whereas the previous two that I have are painful to look at. Do any of you Pogo fans want to see them anyway, out of continuity, or just allow them to hibernate?

December 12, 1972