Thursday, August 16, 2018

Howard Baer: A Nudist at Heart

Howard Baer's drawing of an older and overweight gentleman bedecked with a walrus mustache, top hat, and tails shows him waiting for a young Miss Harkness to finish dressing. The cartoon is boldly and beautifully drawn, yet more memorable for what it suggests than for what it actually shows. This technique of using the caption to allude to something bawdy taking place outside of the field of view was frequently used by cartoonist E. Simms Campbell in his own Esquire work. Campbell, himself prodigious in his output, was known to produce numerous gag ideas for other cartoonists as well, so it is an entirely plausible conjecture that he could be behind this gag.

"Oh don't mind me, Miss Harkness, I'm a nudist at heart[.]"
Howard Baer
Esquire, February 1937, page 135

Note:  This week is strictly clothing-optional here on Attempted Bloggery. Wearing spats while reading the blog is therefore totally unnecessary.

One source for the notion that E. Simms Campbell provided numerous gags for other Esquire cartoonists may be seen here.

Quick Links to the Attempted Bloggery Archives: 

Howard Baer

E. Simms Campbell


Attempted Bloggery's Dressed-to-the-Nines Index


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