The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker, October 14, 2019

The Cover: Ed Steed returns with his second New Yorker cover, and like his first (August 26th of this year) it’s a winner.  Read the magazine’s Q&A with Mr. Steed about his cover here.

The Cartoonists & Cartoons:

A number of drawings of special note in this issue:

A fab mouse drawing (it’s on page 30) by the great Sam Gross.  As noted here recently, Mr. Gross is now in his 50th year of contributing to The New Yorker.

Sara Lautman’s “…accompanied” drawing (p. 43) is a fine fun drawing — delivered in a style unlike any other in the magazine’s stable.

Lars Kenseth’s astronauts drawing (p. 58). I’ll just say it:  Mr. Kenseth’s drawing made me laugh out loud.

Sofia Warren’s Charles Addamsy drawing (p. 63).  A good deal of information to absorb, well-handled.

Glen Baxter’s lion in a museum (p. 48). I’m a sucker for (what seem like) bolt-of-lightning drawings. By that I mean drawings that seem instantaneously transferred to us from the artist without labor (Jack Ziegler was a master of the form). I could be completely wrong: perhaps Mr. Baxter spent hours and days developing this particular cartoon. It’s become a favorite Baxter drawing.

David Borchart’s drawing (p.44) is a fine addition to the magazine’s desert island canon. May desert island drawings never end.

From one who loves castles (and drawing them), nice to see Jeremy Nguyen’s different take (p.25).

A newbie in this issue: Yael Green makes her debut appearance (p.74). Ms. Green is the 23rd new cartoonist brought into the fold this year, and the 49th since Emma Allen became cartoon editor in the Spring of 2017.

The Rea Irvin Talk Masthead Watch: Here’s Mr. Irvin’s entry on the Spill‘s A-Z:

Rea Irvin  Born, San Francisco, 1881; died in the Virgin Islands,1972. Irvin was the cover artist for the New Yorker’s first issue, February 21, 1925. He was the magazine’s first art editor, holding the position from 1925 until 1939 when James Geraghty assumed the title. Irvin became art director and remained in that position until William Shawn succeeded Harold Ross. Irvin’s last original work for the magazine was the magazine’s cover of July 12, 1958. The February 21, 1925 Eustace Tilley cover had been reproduced every year on the magazine’s anniversary until 1994, when R. Crumb’s Tilley-inspired cover appeared. Tilley has since reappeared, with other artists substituting from time-to-time.

The classic Talk masthead by Mr Irvin that ran for 92 consecutive years  is shown above. It was replaced by a redraw (!) in the Spring of 2017. It’s never too late to bring it back.

 

 

Many Many Coffees Ago At The New Yorker; The Tilley Watch Online, Sept. 30 – October 4, 2019

Many Many Coffees Ago At The New Yorker

Here’s a fun photo I came across in the Spill’s archives. Taken in 1987 at The New Yorker‘s long-time offices at 25 West 43rd Street.*

Left to right: Roz Chast, yours truly, Liza Donnelly, Sam Gross, and Mick Stevens. The occasion may have been the art department’s annual holiday party.

*Below:  a Spill map showing The New Yorker‘s various locations in its 94 years.

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The Tilley Watch Online, September 30 – October 4, 2019

An end of the week listing of New Yorker cartoonists who contributed to the Daily Cartoon and/or Daily Shouts

The Daily Cartoon: Brooke Bourgeois, Brendan Loper (two appearances), David Sipress, and Pat Byrnes.

Daily Shouts: Ellis Rosen (with Annelise Capossela), Jeremy Nguyen (with Thatcher Jensen), Julia Wertz, and Amy Hwang.

 

Celebrating Sam Gross’s 50th New Yorker Anniversary

The most recent Sam Gross cartoon in The New Yorker appeared August 5th, 2019.  Mr. Gross’s very first New Yorker cartoon appeared August 23, 1969. Do the math and you’ll find we are in the year, month, and exact day of Mr. Gross’s New Yorker golden anniversary. With today being the date of publication of his debut New Yorker cartoon, I thought I’d check in with Mr. Gross and ask him about that very first sale to the magazine. My call caught him during his morning exercise routine, but he was gracious enough to pause and chat with me for a few minutes.

When I asked him if he recalled the moment when he learned he’d sold to the magazine, he replied, as I knew he would, “Of course I do.” I haven’t met a cartoonist yet who doesn’t remember their first OK (“OK” is New Yorker cartoon lingo for a sold cartoon); in this cartoon world, that moment is a life-changer.  Before telling me of his first OK, he said that he’d actually been selling ideas to The New Yorker for Charles Addams since about 1963. He also sold an idea for Otto Soglow, of Little King fame, but mostly the ideas were for Addams.

And now the story:

It begins with a lunch that included the renowned French artist J.J. Sempe. Mr. Sempe, not yet a New Yorker contributor, had come to town to do a piece on behalf of L’Express.  While in the city, Mr. Sempe was asked to lunch with James Geraghty, then The New Yorker‘s art editor. Mr. Geraghty was interested in having Mr. Sempe submit work to The New Yorker. Originally, Mr. Geraghty’s art assistant, Barbara Nicholls, was to accompany them to lunch as the interpreter, but she had to cancel. In her stead Mr. Geraghty asked the multi-lingual cartoonist Peter Porges to come along. Mr. Porges told Mr. Geraghty he would only go if his friend, Mr. Gross could accompany him.

And so, at lunch, Mr. Gross found himself seated to the left of Mr. Geraghty. Mr. Geraghty asked Mr. Porges to ask Sempe if he would submit work to The New Yorker.  Sempe, through Mr. Porges, replied “he says he’s too busy — has too much work to do.”  Mr. Geraghty then asked Mr. Porges to ask Sempe “if he would consider submitting rejects.”  To which Sempe replied, through Mr. Porges, “What are rejects.”

Shortly, after sipping some wine, Mr. Geraghty leaned over to Mr. Gross (also drinking wine) and said, “Instead of buying the idea [of a recent submission by Mr. Gross] we’re going to buy the whole drawing.” And Mr. Gross replied, “That’s great, thanks.”  Mr. Gross went on to say, “And then, after Geraghty had had another glass of wine, and I had had another glass of wine, he leaned over and said, ‘Oh, and we’re going to buy another one too.'” 

Above: The first Sam Gross New Yorker cartoon

Mr. Gross had heard from Mr. Porges that Mr. Geraghty would “drive cartoonists crazy” with editorial changes to cartoons. Back at the New Yorker’s art department following lunch, Mr. Geraghty handed Mr. Gross the rough drawings of the two bought cartoons [most cartoonists submit “rough” drawings.  If bought, the cartoonist will then do a “finish” — the drawing that will be published].  Mr. Gross tells us what happened next:

“So with that particular drawing [the first published cartoon], he gave me the drawing, and I stood there with it, and said,I’m not going, Mr. Geraghty until you specifically tell me what you want in the drawing.’ So he said, ‘put the kid here, dispense with the awning’ and he was very specific on what I had to do.  Afterwards, with all the other drawings I sold, I never had any problem with him. Every time I sold something he told me exactly what he wanted.” 

I said to Mr. Gross, “That’s a big deal, selling two your first time.” to which Mr. Gross replied, “I can credit the wine for it.”

So here’s to one of The New Yorker‘s cartoon giants. It is quite a feat to sell just one drawing to The New Yorker.  To continue on for fifty years (and counting) is another kind of feat. Mr. Gross is one of a select group of cartoonists with a thumbprint style — i.e., no one else has drawn like him, and he draws like no one else (true, as well, of George Booth, also celebrating his New Yorker golden anniversary this year). Feeling in a oh-what-the-hell Grossian spirit, I’ll say too that no other cartoonist even comes close to thinking like him.

 

Further reading:

For an extended interview with Mr. Gross I highly recommend Richard Gehr’s I Only Read It For The Cartoons, published in 2014, by New Harvest. Mr. Gross is one of a dozen New Yorker cartoonists interviewed.

If you want to listen to Sam Gross being interviewed, there’s this wonderful podcast from Gil Roth’s Virtual Memories Show.

All of Mr. Gross’s cartoon anthologies are must-haves in any cartoon library.  A quartet of them are shown:

An Elephant Is Soft And Mushy (Dodd, Mead & Co. , 1980)

More Gross (Congdon & Weed, 1982)

I Am Blind And My Dog Is Dead (Dodd, Mead & Co., 1977.  Reissued by Harry N. Abrams, 2007)

No More Mr. Nice Guy (Perigee, 1987)

 

 

 

Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon; Strand Event Of Interest; A Daily Shouts With Emily Flake; Ryan Flanders’ TCJ Friday Links; Anthologies For The Waning Dog Days Of Summer

 

Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Peter Kuper gives us three reasons Trump wants to buy Greenland.

Mr. Kuper has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2011.

Visit his website here.

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Strand Event Of Interest

On September 16th the Strand will host a panel discussion centered on Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival.  All the info here.

Drawing Power contributors include New Yorker artists Aline Kominsky-Crumb and Liana Finck.

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A Daily Shouts With Emily Flake

Yesterday’s Daily Shouts by David Bradley Isenberg and Emily Flake: “Possible Explanations For Why Your Subway Car Is Empty”

Ms. Flake has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2008.  Visit her website here.

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Ryan Flander’s TCJ Friday Links

Mr. Flanders’ Friday gathering of comics (and comix) related links. Included here on the Spill as it offers a ton of non-Tilley avenues to explore, if that’s your thing. There’s one New Yorker mention this week (the magazine’s Peanuts article, “How ‘Peanuts’ Created A Space For Thinking”). 

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Anthologies For The Waning Dog Days Of Summer

Some wonderful dog-centric books selected from the Spill‘s library.

Thurber’s Dogs (Simon & Schuster, 1955)

The New Yorker Book of Dog Cartoons (Knopf, 1992)

The Big Book New Yorker Book of Dogs (Random House, 2012)

Dogs by Henry Morgan & George Booth (Houghton Mifflin, 1976)

Dogs Dogs Dogs edited by Sam Gross (Harpercollins, 1985).

 

The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker (Double) Issue Of August 5 & 12, 2019; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

The Cover: Lotsa ice cream on Olimpia Zagnoli’s second New Yorker cover. I’m immediately reminded of any number of early Vogue covers.  Read the Cover Story here.

The Cartoonists:

…a newbie: Lisa Rothstein is the 22nd new cartoonist added to the magazine’s stable this year, and the 48th new cartoonist added since cartoon editor Emma Allen’s tenure began in May 2017.

The Cartoons: quite the surprise seeing a cartoon (on p.61) by the late great Jack Ziegler.  It got me to wondering if perhaps The New Yorker might set up a special online section for the contributors who left us with a lot of work still in the bank (or, as originally designated, “on the bank” — that is,  work bought, but not yet published). When William Steig passed away there was a rumor that hundreds of his drawings (and some covers) were still on the bank. One wonders about the on the bank work of Charles Barsotti, as well as Mr. Ziegler, Leo Cullum, and Michael Crawford, to name but a few dear departed colleagues. Wouldn’t it be great to see this work gathered online.  

Also of interest in this double issue: a cartoon by the one-and-only Sam Gross, who celebrates his 50th year at The New Yorker in August. His first New Yorker drawing appeared in the issue of August 23, 1969 (the Spill will further note the occasion on August 23, 2019).

Speaking of Jack Ziegler, Ed Steed’s squid drawing (p. 37) calls to mind Mr. Ziegler’s classic squid drawing from the issue of September 16, 1996 (it was also used as the cover drawing, and title of Ziegler’s 2004 food cartoon anthology). A quick search for squid cartoons in the Cartoon Bank’s database brought up just two other squid drawings: this one by Danny Shanahan, and this one by Farley Katz).

Also of note:

… J.A.K.’s drawing (p.21) — my fave Jason Adam Katzenstein drawing of all time (so far)

…Chris Ware’s 8 page “Mr. Ware” (he talks about it here).

… Sizing of drawings this issue: most seem right on the money (examples: Sam Gross’s, Zach Kanin’s, Roz Chast’s, Lars Kenseth’s).

…:A goodly number of non-human centric drawings this issue: cockroaches (McNair), the aforementioned squid by Mr. Steed, a bull (McNamee), a parrot (Gross), a blender (Chast), hugging dogs (Rothstein), rocks (Hwang), shishto peppers (Kenseth).

Rea Irvin: Mr. Irvin’s iconic Talk masthead (it appeared for 92 years) disappeared in the Spring of 2017 (read about it here) — replaced by — gasp! — a redraw (not redrawn by Mr. Irvin, who passed away in 1972). Will the original ever return? Here it is until then:

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Brendan Loper, who began contributing to The New Yorker in 2016, on opinions/films.