Saturday, December 09, 2006

Color Theory 7 - color isolated from detailed technique-Yogi Bear "High Fly Guy", 1958

News blast from Art Lozzi-Frank Tipper

Hi John,

What're you doing working Sundays? Me too.

Some color idea sketches I did for a real outdoor Jellystone Park? No, I can't say I remember any specific one. You keep asking if I remember details from 45 yrs ago. Some I do. I find it amusing, but fun. I wanted to ask you how you know it's my work. From the titles? From a particular style?
Frank Tipper? Never worked with him. Gawd! Wasn't he from the late 30's, early 40's? Wasn't he associated with early Alex Lovy. I'm much later. I was 1 year old when he started.
I read you daily now, with my morning coffee. I'll check the one about how H-B gradually became bland. It was obviously because of the too many cooks in the kitchen. Gone was the sparkle and the crystalline clinks. This is why I tell you how glad I was when I quit at the time I did.

Happy day.
Art L.

Here's a cartoon without the credits. In the 80s they used to run all these cartoons on USA's Cartoon Express-complete with the title credits and that's how I began to know what the names of all the animators were whose styles I had recognized since I was a kid.

This was also the first time I ever saw the cartoons in color and it was a revelation. I never realized how candy like and cartoony they were. I picked out Art's as my favorite BGs but liked most of them in general.Then USA decided to add more commercials per hour in their cartoon block so they started cutting off the credits to make time to sell you "My Little Fetus" and "Erotic Leg Warmer Workout Tapes" for babies.
Years later, when Turner bought Hanna Barbera, Cartoon Network decided to run the HB cartoons on their new channel-but they couldn't find the titles! Whoever edited them out of the cartoons cut them off the original masters!!! Aaargh!

Can you believe how stupid people in high positions in entertainment are??

I think since then someone at either Cartoon Network or now Warner's (the latest owners) have been finding some of the titles and putting them back on-but they haven't found them all yet so some history is still erased.

Of course while restoring the titles they've also gone in and changed colors and DVNRed a lot of the cartoons and added further tampering, but not as badly as they have ruined the Warner Bros. and many MGM cartoons.

So I don't know who painted this cartoon, but I'm guessing it might be Frank Tipper-who I know nothing about. The technique on this cartoon is simpler and the brush stokes and lines less confident and stylish than either Monte's or Art's. It looks like another cartoon that has Tipper's name in the credits.
These stills illustrate a point I have strongly made in earlier posts about color: They are painted with a limited palette-that is, just a small range of basic colors.

But within each color, there are slight variations in tint, hue and value. Look at the hills and tress. The whole area is green, but different values and hues of green. Those subtle differences make the feeling of the background much richer than if it was just a monochromatic green with darker and lighter shades of the same hue of green.

One hill is a turquoise sort of green, the other more towards middle green (with the salmon sky peeking through the sponge holes). Then the trees are painted on in different hues and values of green too.

So even though the actual brush technique of these paintings is minimal and none too deft, just using fun and clever color does a lot to make the cartoon feel bright and happy.