Sunday, December 24, 2006

Random Golden Book Stuff

Look how much fun kids used to have. Have you seen what the drawings look like in kids' books today?

Here's two Disney books. One's from the late 40s and the other's from the 60s. The Cub Scouts is painted in a soft warm style and the 60s in a sharper cooler style. You can find tons more Mickey and Donald books all painted in different styles. Here's two giants: Tenggren and Crawford.
I'm not sure who painted this, and it's not a Golden Book, it's a similar type of book-maybe Whitman's Tell-a-tales.
I like the weird puppet-dog.

Sorry, nothing mind-blowing today. I'm still shopping for last minute gifts.


Allan L. said...

Those are some cool examples! introduced me to book called Frankenstein Makes A Sandwich..., which I've recently flipped through. I think it's a pretty fine example of children's book illustration that head n' shoulders above what's out there. But hey, that's just me.

JohnK said...

Yeah, that's good. A nice exception!

Mcnuggetinator said...

I could stare at those illustrations for hours and still be entertained! I'd love to have a copy of those books. by the way, what do you think about Dr. Seuss, cartooning wise?

Another thing is that I just want to thank you so much for making the Preston Blair lessons. I just finished them recently and throughout last week posted some before and after drawings and I have improved a LOT thanks to you. I'd be honered if you would look at them on my blog and tell me what is the next step I can take. Thanks


sean said...

i think kids still have fun looking at book illustrations. i don't know, maybe i am confused, did you put that link on top to show the "bad" examples of todays illustrators? because i don;t think the are all bad. by the way, i've been meaning to ask you, what do you think of low brow artists? like tim biskup and gary baseman?

Jorge Garrido said...

Terrific stuff!

Anonymous said...

Hey John,

I don't know if you've seen this, but here it is anyway. Merry Christmas!

The March of Time

JohnK said...

>>did you put that link on top to show the "bad" examples of todays illustrators?<<

To show how un-fun they are. Poor kids today.

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh I love Ren and Stimpy!! I love everything you do, John! I would give you my first material posession :).
I agree with your blog, and the puppet dog is great!

Hey, John, I'm a 15 year old girl who wishes to be a cartoonist. Any tips on where to start?
Oh, lol, good luck in finding all your Christmas gifts!

Anonymous said...

Oh crap. . . I think that link was faulty.

Here's the URL:

Anonymous said...

I want a red fire engine. ;)

Anonymous said...

That Frankenstein book looks great.

Merry christmas, john k.

(or happy Hanukkah)


Posts like this make me wish I had saved all my golden books and Seuss books I had when I was a kid.
I still have the book Anatole somewhere though. Gorgeous book.

Anonymous said...

I just looked at those illustrations from today's childrens' books, and I just have to say . . . WOW. One third of those drawings looked pretty good, the second third looked like they were made more for adults, and other third looked like clip art from Microsoft Word. The award for "Best Homage to Why the '80s Sucked" goes to John Richardson.

In order to make drawings fun for kids, the characters need to give the impression that they have their own unique mannerisms, they need to look alive, and they to need to look like they're involved in some dynamic action. For the most part, the modern childrens' illustrations that John K. put up have flat-looking characters that for the most part just stand around and smile. That's not fun.

After seeing Andrew Selby's samples, I have to say that I love the whole "no outlines" look. However, even though it's being used so much these days, a lot of people can't seen to get it right. It seems like many people such as Andrew Selby and others just take different colors, form them into basic shapes, and pile them on top of each other. Using no outlines gives no excuse to ignore lighting, depth perception, and perspective. The Pebbles Flintstone and Magilla-Gorilla book illustration are perfect examples of how to pull off the "no outlines" look with flying colors (no pun intended), and Dan Krall seems to be getting it. This whole debacle is one of the problems I have with "Foster's Home for Imaginary Friends", a great kids cartoon with some glaring problems.

To the person who mentioned Dr. Seuss, he's one of my many idols. His character-to-background contrast could've been better, but his drawings and stories are truly one-of-a-kind and really revolutionary. Also, has been anybody wondered what a Spumco-style Golden book would look like?

Later I'll make another comment with links to some truly fun illustrations from two of the most popular cartoonists in Japan, who are also big idols of mine.

Anonymous said...

Poor kids, indeed. When I substitute teach to make the rent, I have to read this new junk the teachers have around. It's like they illustrate with clip art from a Microsoft Word program. Very boring for the kids and I. Recently I started bringing along my Golden Books and some Warner Cartoon videos to balance out their day.


P.S. Merry X-mas to all here and a thank you for a great year of the enjoyable comment's page. Here's a gift for you John. Please don't ban me for this.


Anonymous said...

Thanks John, for confirming my theory. (All this time I thought I was just waxing nostalgic for things from my childhoood!) Lucky for me, my folks saved a bunch of my Golden Years Books and I'm able to share them with my toddler!

Eric C. said...

Merry Christmas John and a Happy New Year!

_Eric ;)

sean said...

>>did you put that link on top to show the "bad" examples of todays illustrators?<<

To show how un-fun they are. Poor kids today

hmm, i agree they are for the most part un-fun. they are too politically correct. everything is drawn sort of generically. but i mean, thats the artists style. what would you change? the colors? how could they (the illustrations) be better? and i am not trying to be a dick. just generally interested in hearing what you'll say.

Anonymous said...

Alright, here are the illustration links I said I'd post. If you want to see the following images, you'll need to deal with some loading time.

Akira Toriyama:

The drawings you'll find here are just some samples from Toriyama's work during the '80s, but if you like what you see here, you should definitely see his work into the '90s to now, as his style has really evolved through his work on video games and other manga. His style made a big turning point at around volume 17 of "DragonBall", and it's what really revolutionized the boys' cartoon landscape in Japan.

Eiichiro Oda:

Eiichiro Oda actually idolizes Akira Toriyama, and "DragonBall" is Oda's most important inspiration for getting into the field of manga. His style has many similarities to Toriyama's, but at the same it's very different and one-of-a-kind. It's no surprise that "One Piece" is the biggest and most popular series of its kind to hit Japan since "DragonBall", and has surpasses in scope and sales. Unfortunately, the company that picked up the English rights for the animated version of "One Piece" ruined its reputation here in the States, but that's another story.

By the way, the person who did the John K. illustrations did an awesome job.

Anonymous said...

I love the scan of the family three down, the colors are wonderful! I tell yeah, as a kid who’s just about to leave the target demographic of children’s television programming I weep at what I watched compared to the things you guys grew up with. Granted there were a couple of good shows, (Genndy Tartakovsky’s work (even if a bit “blah” at some points I still love my Dexter’s Lab and Samurai Jack), Animaniacs, Ren and Stimpy) but most of them have just gotten worse from a stylistic stand point. The only television show I can say that is still running and has only gotten better with each season is Venture Bros.; it amazes me how a show with such a little staff and budget can look and sound so much greater then Family Guy and the Simpson’s with their gross cash flows.
John K., the lessons and guidance on your blog has helped point me in the right direction with regard to proper techniques and just making a drawing look darn good. Thanks a bunch!

Jorge Garrido said...

Sam, those Akira Toriyama links are great! He's my favourite manga artist! Especially his more cartoony earlier style!

Speaking of amazing children's book's, John, what can you tell us about The Ugly Druggies?! Oh, that I had a copy of my own of this!

I think that's one of the Ripping Friends in there.

Steve Carras said...

LOL at bottom of topic....."Magillas's Little Bitch"..[Ogee].