Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Joe Zeis: Boilerplate Gag Cartoons

How much mileage can one get from a single idea? Cartoonist Joe Zeis notes how little space there is down in the basement recreation area and creates two rather similar cartoons for the Saturday Evening Post. Does this pair constitute one distinct gag idea or two? 

"Now there's a shot you don't see very often."
Joe Zeis
The Saturday Evening Post

"How about changing sides for a while."
Joe Zeis
The Saturday Evening Post, c. 1957-1960
Collected in After Hours (1961)


Two more Post cartoons in pretty much the same setting hang on the singular observation that coal is pretty dirty stuff.
"Nice try, hon!"
Joe Zeis
The Saturday Evening Post


"Well, how's it going?"
Joe Zeis
The Saturday Evening Post, February 28, 1959



Note:  Mike Lynch Cartoons provides the publication date for the last of these gags, but the source for the others does not. Can readers identify any of the issues in which the remainder of these cartoons first appeared?

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Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Joe Zeis: Working Late at the Office

Every business executive's nightmare is the subject of a work of original cartoon art for the Saturday Evening Post by Joe Zeis. The artwork, offered recently on eBay, unfortunately is marred somewhat by foxing to the paper. The caption has been corrected grammatically for subject-verb agreement.

The cartooning convention of having a figure stand with heels together and toes pointing in the opposite direction is an odd one. Both hips would have to be externally rotated in the extreme to create such an unstable base of support.

Joe Zeis
"I'm working late, dear—there've been a few changes around here."
Original art
The Saturday Evening Post


Joe Zeis's signature

Detail with pencil traces

Verso

Publisher's and artist's stamps


Joe Zeis
eBay Listing Ended November 4, 2017


Joe Zeis
eBay Item Description




Note:  Does anyone know the date of publication?



Quick Links to the Attempted Bloggery Archives:

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Monday, June 18, 2018

My Entry in The New Yorker Cartoon Caption Contest #620

Here is my entry in The New Yorker Cartoon Caption Contest #620 for June 18, 2018. The drawing is by Drew Dernavich.

"Surely it can't make things any worse."


This one just left me hanging:
"So then we WERE living in a world made of papier-mâché?"


Note:  Last week cartoonist Mick Stevens revisited the Arthurian legend of the Sword in the Stone at an office desk. My caption didn't have any pull. Hold a round table discussion on Contest #619.


Go ahead. Take a swing at my old blog posts about Drew Dernavich.


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Sunday, June 17, 2018

Joe Zeis: Another Father's Day in the Harem

Today is the day all siblings should come together to remember one very special person...

"It's always like this on Father's Day."
Joe Zeis
True, June 1961, page 64

Scan by Dick Buchanan


Note: My thanks to Dick Buchanan for making a special delivery just for us this Father's Day. This post represents the twenty-sixth time Dick has contributed to Attempted Bloggery. The scan comes to us directly from the legendary Dick Buchanan Cartoon Clip Files. Dick contributes regularly to Mike Lynch Cartoons, most recently a post entitled "From the Dick Buchanan Files: Clyde Lamb Roughs 1946 - 65."
Not to read it would be a crime.



Quick Links to the Attempted Bloggery Archives:

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Saturday, June 16, 2018

Gardner Rea: Opting Out of Father's Day

All eyes are on dad in Gardner Rea's Look magazine cartoon from the June 19, 1963 issue. For this father of four, Father's Day may simply be too much of a good thing. But can he really buy his way out of it? Rea uses solid black only for the billfold, to ensure our eyes go right to the central focus of the gag.
"How much would it be worth to you just to forget Father's Day this year?"
Gardner Rea
Look, June 18, 1963, page 92
Scan by Dick Buchanan


Note: My thanks to Dick Buchanan for getting all sentimental on us in anticipation of Father's Day. This post represents the twenty-fifth time Dick has contributed to Attempted Bloggery. The scan comes to us directly from the legendary Dick Buchanan Cartoon Clip Files. Dick contributes regularly to Mike Lynch Cartoons, most recently a post entitled "From the Dick Buchanan Files: Clyde Lamb Roughs 1946 - 65." It would be criminal to miss these!



Quick Links to the Attempted Bloggery Archives:

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Friday, June 15, 2018

In a Time of Scarcity: Helen E. Hokinson New Yorker Cover Art

The paucity of consumer goods that American's faced during the Second World War did not abate the moment the war ended. Helen E. Hokinson's society matron graciously presents a floral bouquet to her local butcher who, it may be hoped, will soon have more cuts of beef to distribute to the community. The makeshift magazine logo painted onto the original art is unusual in that it is not meant to be reproduced on the cover. Instead, Hokinson is making use of the white background to indicate the optimal color for the logo. This original art sold for $6,000 in 2005 at Illustration House.

Helen E. Hokinson
Original art
The New Yorker,
 June 22, 1946

Helen E. Hokinson
Original art
The New Yorker,
 June 22, 1946

Helen E. Hokinson
The New Yorker, June 22, 1946


Helen E. Hokinson
http://www.findartinfo.com/english/list-prices-by-artist/131042/helen-e-hokinson.html





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The Harvard-Yale Game: Helen E. Hokinson Proposed New Yorker Cover Art

The annual Harvard-Yale football game is of surpassing interest to those with a stake in either venerable institution but, for the rest of us, there is potentially some difficulty in deciding which team to root for. To an outsider, there just doesn't seem to be all that much qualitative difference between the schools. This is the critical point, it would seem, of Helen E. Hokinson's undated cover proposal for the New Yorker. After all, one never wants to be caught waving the wrong banner.

Helen E. Hokinson
New Yorker cover proposal

Helen E. Hokinson
Ira & Larry Goldberg Auctioneers
Manuscript and Collectibles Auction
Sale 30, April 30, 2005, Lot 1238






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Thursday, June 14, 2018

The Latest Fashion: Helen E. Hokinson New Yorker Cover Art

Helen E. Hokinson makes a plus-size fashion statement with her original New Yorker art of May 18, 1940. She has had to move her signature away from the lower margin so it would not be cropped out of the printed cover image. The colors have faded slightly over three-quarters of a century, but the incisive wit remains fresh as ever. The chauffeur and the dog react to Madame's new purchase with a mutual deadpan stare, but one senses Hokinson herself is sympathetic to her fashionable matron.

Helen E. Hokinson
Original art

The New Yorker,
 May 18, 1940


Helen E. Hokinson
The New Yorker, May 18, 1940


Helen E. Hokinson
Eldred's Listing, November 19, 2015
With 20% Buyer's Premium












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Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Helen E. Hokinson: On Madame

Helen E. Hokinson's New Yorker cartoon of July 18, 1936 is noteworthy for its prominent one-point perspective and its high vantage point. The perspective leads the eye right to the saleswoman's head, which in addition is framed by the window. The high horizon line affords the reader a frank view of Madame's full figure even though she is sitting down on a couch.


"Of course, on Madame it will take definite form and shape."
Helen E. Hokinson
Original art
The New Yorker, July 18, 1936, page 29


Helen E. Hokinson
eBay Listing Ended November 19, 2015

Helen E. Hokinson
eBay Item Descri
ption

Helen E. Hokinson
eBay Bid History
Two bidders duke it out.





The Eldred's catalogue listing of three original works by Helen E. Hokinson fails to identify any of them as New Yorker pieces. All three are.

"Of course, on Madame it will take definite form and shape."
Helen E. Hokinson
The New Yorker, July 18, 1936, page 29

"Of course, on Madame it will take definite form and shape."
Helen E. Hokinson
Original art
The New Yorker, July 18, 1936, page 29
Drawing by Helen E. Hokinson

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Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Helen E. Hokinson: The Fashionable Head

Helen E. Hokinson's composition for a New Yorker cartoon published on January 23, 1933 is curious, presenting the speaker from behind, and thereby partially obscuring the stack of hats she is presenting to a customer. This works because the gag is about hair, not hats. The editors have slightly rejiggered the caption, removing the full stop at the beginning and shortening the word realize to know, which transfers momentum to the end of the caption. The payoff is the word hair, now underlined for emphasis, while the customer's hair is seen in unobstructed profile with a small patch of white directly behind her. In retrospect, having the reader pay more attention to the hats might have detracted from the gag's impact.

"Oh! I didn't realize you had hair!"
Published as "Oh, I didn't know you had hair!"
Helen E. Hokinson
Original art
The New Yorker, January 23, 1933, page 40

Helen E. Hokinson
Eldred's Auction Ended November 19, 2015

Eldred's Item Description


Helen E. Hokinson
eBay Bid History
Ten bids and only one bidder who eventually hits the reserve price



"Oh, I didn't know you had hair!"
Helen E. Hokinson
The New Yorker, January 23, 1933, page 40


"Oh! I didn't realize you had hair!"
Published as "Oh, I didn't know you had hair!"
Helen E. Hokinson
Original art
The New Yorker, January 23, 1933, page 40


Drawing by Helen E. Hokinson





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