18 December 2018

Puppets Watch Puppets?

Continuing from this morning's post, we follow Pinocchio, as rendered by Ellis Holly Chambers, while he's off to visit a puppet show...

Sadly, we have no record of who is writing this tale. The C. Collodi credit that appeared in the first chapter is the original author of Pinocchio. Who adapted this tale...? Perhaps someday time traveling art aficionados will uncover such information, but we must remain ignorant for now.

Happily, the tale continues, and that we can follow along with...

Next - the 13 page final chapter - Adventures In Boobie Land!

page art by Ellis Chambers for World's Greatest Stories #2 (1949)

EC's World's Greatest Story

Regular readers know we've got a fondness for Ellis Chambers around here (and over at The 1940s Funny Animalphabet). Usually his tales are short bursts of glorious craziness, but on at least one occasion he drew a full length tale - 28 pages, illustrating an adaptation of Pinocchio for World's Greatest Stories #2:

While still maintaining a bit of his usual visual flair, Chambers keeps things much more tightly controlled for telling a more coherent tale.  (That he was able to do so may come as a small shock to some)

 Let's take a look at the opening of the tale, shall we?

What does he see?
Well, you probably have a fair clue already, but join us later today for Pinocchio Visits A Puppet Show.

Toy Boy Bonus:
How to make your own Pinocchio puppet -

page art by Ellis Holly Chambers for World's Greatest Stories #2 (1949)

17 December 2018

Blue Monday Calendar 2018 Week 51

I find the face to be a special delight in Gil Elvgren's painting for this week, Moonlight And Roses (Miss Sinclair 1965) from 1963. (You'll have to work out that contradiction for yourselves)

Only one yet remains...

art by Gil Elvgren (1963)

16 December 2018

Brother Theodore Warned Us

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town!

Are you prepared?

page art by Geof Darrow for Hellboy Christmas Special (1977)

Virgil In Blue

To wrap up this week's look back at the artwork of Virgil Finlay, let's take a look at some of his more 'adult oriented' imagery in our 'back room' - The Other Voice Of ODD!

Step on back to peruse the full post.

artwork by Virgil Finlay

14 December 2018

Tomorrow - In The Beginning

Those old timers among you who are familiar with Tommy Tomorrow likely know him as basically a space cop with the Planeteers. But back in the beginning, Tommy Tomorrow wasn't really a person at all. He was more of a template - a projection of the man of the future through which we could view his world. He was a potential character, waiting for someone to become him when the present became the future. That didn't last too long before he transitioned to a more typical character, but it was - for me - an intriguing approach.

What brings us to Tomorrow's yesterday today is our ongoing look at the artwork of Virgil Finlay. Back in 1947, Finlay illustrated Tommy's first two adventures in Real Fact Comics #s 6 & 8. Both were short 4-pagers, something of an expansion from the Just Imagine tales we saw yesterday.

Let's take a look, shall we?

Obviously, no FF&G this post. Still struggling against forces internal and external, but we shall continue on, eh?

page art by Virgil Finlay for Real Fact Comics #s 6 & 8 (1947)

12 December 2018

Just Imagine - Virgil Finlay's Futures

As noted last time, Virgil Finlay did a bit of comic book work, too. Not a great deal - only 3 dozen pages all told. Most of his work was for Real Fact Comics #s 4-12 from 1946-1948. Those stories were all reprinted over the next few decades, but, as far as i know, only one more story was new work - a 1954 tale for Mystery In Space #19.

Today, let's look at the series he took over in Real Fact. Long before The Man did his "Just Imagine" series, the title was used for short, two page speculative tales of future events. Finlay illustrated seven of these stories during his stint at Real Fact. Since they're only two pages each, let's go ahead and take a look at all of them, eh?

In chronological order:

Next time: Tommy Tomorrow!  
(yes, we're still talking Virgil Finlay)

page art by Virgil Finlay for Real Fact Comics #s 4-7, 9, 11 & 12 (1946-1948)

11 December 2018

Falling Further Into Finlay

I've spoken previously of my fondness for the artwork of Virgil Finlay, but we've gone much too long without returning to the topic. Happily, i got a little nudge in that direction while trying to get my brain back to the blog, so let's take a gander at some more of his work, starting with the one that inspired the topic title...

Note the unusual signature on this one...

...and, yes - it is part of a series, as one might suspect.

Something i've rarely seen is Finlay using duo-tone/duo-shade boards in his work. I don't think these exist any more, though i could be wrong. What they were is art boards with two contrasting shading patterns embedded in the page. The tones could be brought out using one of two developing solutions (or both, overlapping) painted on with a brush. We're so used to seeing his elaborate texturing work, it's a mild shock to see the use of duo-shade, as in this piece...

...not that he doesn't make it work well. It was just surprising to see, at least it was for me. Afterward, i began to notice some other more subtle uses with the duoshade providing background textures while primary figures received his usual detailed inks.

I think this odd little piece is enhanced by the title - The Angry Street...

This last piece is from late in Finlay's life. He died back in 1971, and this is from 1968. Sometimes when i view this one, i think of a valley of souls in the afterlife with Virgil leading a friendlier journey than his namesake...

Next time:
You knew that Virgil Finlay drew comics, right?

all art by Virgil Finlay (1937-1968)