Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Charles Addams: Birds of a Feather

A New Yorker pencil rough by Charles Addams shows the care he took in preparing preliminary sketches of cartoon submissions. The final published version overall has very similar figure placement to the rough sketch, but Addams (or the editors) rethought the foreground hut and some of the larger background birds, particularly the one standing just behind the man. Having birds that are too large in the background disrupts the perspective and provides an unneeded visual distraction. The foreground hut is expendable because there's already a cabin in the background and the basic premise of the gag is that not a lot of people are present on the island anyway.

"Well, you wanted a place with more birds than people."
Charles Addams, preliminary cartoon art
Published as 
"Well, you wanted a place with more birds than people."
The New Yorker, February 15, 1982, page 40

Pencil caption and ink signature

"Well, you wanted a place with more birds than people."
Charles Addams
The New Yorker, February 15, 1982, page 40
Tear sheet with inscription and signature

Charles Addams
Taraba Illustration Art, LLC listing as of November 18, 2012


Note:  Do you know what this blog needs? How about more scans and photos of preliminary art, finished art, and concept art by Charles Addams and other New Yorker artists? Am I right?

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