From time-to-time I momentarily take Ink Spill outside The New Yorker cartoon orbit — in this case a brief auto-biographical moment.
As a kid I was deep into Batman and Superman comic books as well as the Dick Tracy newspaper comic strips. While they’ve never been all that obvious an influence on my own drawings in The New Yorker, they’re mixed in the foundation (along with a whole bunch of other comic book & comic strip characters).
This particular volume of Dick Tracy strips hits particularly close to home as it covers the years when I was first introduced to Chester Gould’s world, wrapped around the Sunday editions of New York’s Daily News.
The Complete Dick Tracy, Volume 19: 1959 – 1961, IDW Publishing, will be in book stores October 15th.
There has been a lot of ink spilled about The New Yorker‘s Caption Contest. In this brief interview with the magazine’s Cartoon Editor, we learn that there are sometimes very close calls when it comes to picking a winner.
[Full disclosure: the cartoon is mine; my original caption had nothing to do with bagels]
It being The New Yorker’s 90th anniversary, how fitting that the cover has been revealed for Thomas Vinciguerra’s Cast of Characters: Wolcott Gibbs, E.B. White, James Thurber, and The Golden Age of The New Yorker.
Quite a crew gathered for a book party at the Algonquin Hotel in 1938: seated, left to right, Fritz Foord (who ran Foord’s Sanitarium in Kerhonkson, NY*), Wolcott Gibbs, Frank Case (owner of The Algonquin Hotel) and Dorothy Parker; standing, Alan Campbell (Ms. Parker’s husband), St. Clair McKelway, Russell Maloney and James Thurber.
*according to a Thurber biographer, Harrison Kinney, Thurber heard that “O.Henry had used Foord’s as a drying-out place, and later psychically exhausted colleagues would periodically turn themselves in there, too.”
(W.W. Norton & Co. will publish Mr. Vinciguerra’s book in November of this year).
Note: A Case For Pencils asked me to participate in a survey of tools of the trade. You can see it here.
In honor of today’s big event, I’ve dragged this drawing out of the archives. I believe it’s the only football drawing of mine ever published in The New Yorker. [pub date: October 16, 2006]
I’m pleased to announce that Mad At Something, my biography of the late and very great New Yorker cartoonist, Peter Arno will be published by Regan Arts.
Arno is one of the pillars of The New Yorker‘s earliest days, a group that includes Harold Ross, E.B. White, Katharine White, and James Thurber. Ross, the magazine’s founder and first editor called Arno “our pathfinder artist” and “the greatest artist in the world.” It is indeed the case that Arno’s work for the magazine raised the graphic bar so high that “New Yorker cartoon” became synonymous with excellence in the field.
The idea for an Arno biography began back in 1999 in true cartoonist fashion: as an A-Ha! moment as I was driving in the vicinity of Arno’s home just outside of Manhattan; I realized that he had never been the subject of a biography. Since that moment I’ve spent the past fifteen years researching and writing about his life.
Mad At Something is not just an examination of Arno’s life and work, it is also an exploration of the birth and development of the New Yorker cartoon, as well as the magazine’s fabled art department, and its artists. One of the many wonderful things about being a New Yorker cartoonist is the opportunity it’s afforded me to meet other New Yorker cartoonists. Since beginning the biography I’ve reached out to my colleagues asking them to share their thoughts on Arno’s work. The list includes Arno contemporaries such as William Steig, Syd Hoff, Robert Weber, Frank Modell, Eldon Dedini, Ed Fisher, through post-Arno contributors such as Jack Ziegler, Roz Chast, Peter Steiner, Bruce Eric Kaplan and Edward Sorel. I am especially pleased that the book’s curtain closer is composed of their contributions.
Mad At Something will be published in 2016.