Monday, July 05, 2010

Free Scott

Monday Cartoon Day.

Walt Scott is a pretty interesting artist. According to a very iformative bio on Alan Holtz' Strippers Guide, he started working after the first world war. In the thirties he joined Walt Disney's crew and worked on several cartoons, including Pinocchio, Dumbo and Bambi. After that he joined the NEA staff in Cleveland, where he had worked before his Disney stint as well. Like the artists at the Associated Press bullpen, he did all sorts of jobs, including pinch-hitting for the political cartoonist and doing al sorts of special features as well is ghosting for NEA strips that had either temporarely or completely lost their artists. As such he worked on the Captain Easy Sunday strip dor a couple of years, until daily artist Leslie Turner took over that job as well. Scott's work for that stip has been called some of the most uninspired hack work ever, but I don't agree. It's hard to be compared to Roy Crane or Leslie Turner, but Scott had a few qualities of his own. He drew pretty women and had a great sense of color, which makes most of the black and white samples I have quite muddy. He also had a flair for design, which is shown in his Captain Easy work as well as in his later strip The Little People. The Little People is his biggest claim to fame, because it ran the longest, but unfortunately as with most design oriented artists, he fell into a rut, making the strip almost unreadable to me. I have many samples and will show them over time, but for their artistic interest only and probably just a few everytime. He drew the tiny pixies all his life and I must have a sample of one of their earlier color incarnations somewhere, but that didn't help him from turning them into it very sickly sweet, almost cynically cute, unpersonal series.

So it was a surprise to me to see some of the politcal cartoons he did in the fifties. Again, the subject often isn't very special (and they may even have been staff-written), but artisticly I find them very interesting. I have only a few selected samples, as I have to run across them to find them.

Two Easy samples:

Aug 22 1948:

Sept 29 1948:

An early sample of The Little People:

Feb 1 1953:

I also have a longer black and white run of Sundays from 1956/7, which I wil show tomorrow.


JohnK said...

I like his Little People work. Good cartooning and compositions.

Richard Ranke said...

My mother's family knew Walt Scott and there is a Walt Scott original painting on my wall-of a scene with the Little People.