By Robert C. Harvey
This paintings examines the sketch all through its heritage for the weather that make cartoons essentially the most attractive of the preferred arts. The cartoon used to be created through rival newspapers as a tool of their movement battles. It quick tested itself as not just a good equipment, but in addition as an establishment that quickly unfold to newspapers world-wide. This old research unfolds the background of the funnies and divulges the delicate artwork of ways the strips mix notice and images to make their influence. The e-book additionally reveals new details and weighs the impression of syndication upon the medium. Milestones within the artwork of cartooning featured contain: Mutt and Jeff, Dick Tracy, Tarzan, Flash Gordon, Popeye, Krazy Kat, and others. more moderen classics also are integrated, corresponding to Peanuts, Tumbleweeds, Doonesbury and Calvin and Hobbes.
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Extra resources for The Art of the Funnies: An Aesthetic History (Studies in Popular Culture (Paperback))
Mutt pursued every conceivable occupation and avocation in quest of a bigger bankroll; and in every endeavor, he was frustrated by Jeff's inability to concentrate on the main chance. But as a comic strip rather than a cultural and lexical phenomenon, Mutt and Jeff enjoys another distinction: it established the appearance of the medium, its daily format. Moreover, in the process of consolidating the art form, Mutt and Jeff employed many devices—such as continuous daytoday narrative and political satire—that we normally associate with periods much later in the history of the newspaper comic strip. The author of this prototypical enterprise, Harry Conway "Bud" Fisher, was likewise something of an exemplar: in the conduct of his professional life, he set precedents that would affect the lives of other cartoonists for decades. Figure 19. Fisher drew himself and his star players for the American Magazine in about 1916. Page 36 Figure 20. A. Mutt's first appearance, November 15, 1907. Fisher did not invent the "strip" format for the daily comic strip. Other cartoonists before him had strung their comic pictures together in single file across a daily newspaper page before Mutt and Jeff first appeared on November 15, 1907. But these were isolated instances. Moreover, Fisher was not even the first to deploy the form on a regular daily basis. That distinction belongs to Clare Briggs. Briggs, a cartoonist on the staff of the Chicago American, inaugurated a sixdaysaweek strip late in 1903 at the instigation of his editor, Moses Koenigsberg. known as A. Piker Clerk, the BriggsKoenigsberg concoction dealt with horse racing and betting. It was intended to stimulate sales of the Final Sports edition of the paper by serializing the gambling exploits of the title character: A. Piker Clerk placed a wager one day, and the outcome was reported in the next day's strip—so that to find out whether Clerk won, readers had to buy the next day's paper. The scheme worked; newsstand sales went up. But daily publication of the strip was discontinued after a fairly short run because William Randolph Hearst, publisher of the Chicago American, thought the strip was too vulgar. 1 In contrast to these earlier efforts, Mutt and Jeff endured. And because it lasted—because it kept coming back, day after day after day, seven days a week—it was the first successful daily comic strip. As Coulton Waugh observed, the Columbus Principle obtains: the Vikings may have been the first Europeans to tread the beaches in the Western hemisphere, but Christopher Columbus inspired others with his visit and thereby earned his niche in history. 2 And Mutt and Jeff did the same: its regular appearance and its continued popularity invited imitation, thus establishing the daily "strip" form for a certain kind of newspaper cartoon. Until Mutt and Jeff set the fashion, newspaper cartoons usually reached readers in one of two forms: on Sunday, in colored pages of tiered panels in sequence (like Winsor McCay's famed Little Nemo in Slumberland, a feature intended chiefly for children); on weekdays, in collections of comic drawings grouped almost haphazardly within the ruled border of a large singleframe panel (directed mostly to adult readers).