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BUON SANTO STEFANO DA FRANK FRAZETTA E SHELDON MAYER

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Nei commenti fatti affondare nel nulla in questo blog, unilateralmente, poù di una volta era citato Sheldon Mayer (lo nominava Sauro Pennacchioli, ma non solo lui). Purtroppo, non c’è stato mai modo di parlarne o di mostrarne qualcosa.
Prima di passare a Frazetta e, spero, alle balle sparate da Rolf Kauka che oggi ci sono rammentate da un bel sito tedesco, postiamo almeno un paio di immagini natalizie del buon Sheldon.

Il bel blog americano (e americanofilo, fumettisticamente parlando) di Pappy, ci mostra tutta una serie di succulente tavole originali, fra le queli la cover posta sopra, relative alla storia di Rodolfo (da noi divenuto RodolfA), il “renno” non trangendere la cui sola anomalia consisteva nel naso a luce rossa, pur non alludendo ad akcunché di hard.

Come evitare di sottrarre a Pappy una delikatessen della quale lo ringraziamo? Una storiellina horrorcomica inedita disegnata da Sheldon?
Incredibile, appunto, che nessuno l’abbia mai pubblicata su carta. Ha l’aria di essere stata creata in un’epoca tot (primi anni Sessanta?) e poi di essere stata rimaneggiata dallo stesso Sheldon, forse per un formato pocket, mentre originariamente era nata per un comic book (e forse in questa forma sarà pure stata pubblicata da qualche parte).

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Buon S. Stefano a chi non si chiama Stefano!

Bob Barrett scrive in un luogo che non vi cito per beffarmi della netiquette, una volta tanto, delle osservazioni degne di attenzione su dei disegni comici di Frank Frazetta, come gli schizzi sopra e le pagine che propongo sotto:

I’m curious if you are familiar with Frank Frazetta‘s animation art that he created for the various funny animal comics published by Standard/Nedor/Better publications. Frank always referred to this work as animation rather than funny animal art. What caused me to query you about this is this piece of Frazetta art that I just added it to my collection. I became a Frazetta fan when I discovered “Dan Brand and Tipi” in Durango Kid Comics when I was thirteen and I began to look for comics featuring his art after that. I was not familiar with his animation art until after I returned to America from Germany and my discharge from the Army in 1962. At that time I had begun to buy comics from Bill Thailing. When he discovered my interest in Frazetta comic art he asked me if I was interested in his funny animal comics; he had tried to interest other Frazetta collectors in it but they weren’t interested. I told him that I would buy every Frazetta funny animal comic that he had! I discovered that I really like Frazetta’s animation art and, to this day, prefer his comic-book work to his later painting and illustration career. And I am especially drawn to his animation art.

During one of my conversations with Frank he told me that he had once been contacted by the Walt Disney Studio, asking him if he would be interested in coming to work for them. I questioned him about when this might have occurred, and he said that it was during the time that he worked for Standard—1947 through 1949. I asked him how Disney had found out about him and he didn’t know, except that he said thatone of the other Disney artists who was drawing animation for the Standard funny animal comic books might have showed his work to the people at Disney. I asked him if he had been tempted to accept their invitation and he replied that he was flattered but had no interest in moving to Los Angeles—he would have been nineteen to twenty-one when he was doing the animation art, and he was still living at home, was deeply involved in baseball, at nineteen he had been named Most Valuable Player of the Parade Ground League in Brooklyn with a .487 batting average. Also, he had a girl friend that he didn’t want to leave.

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This page I just added to my collection shows, at the top and middle, the character of Snowman, which he dreamed up in his early teens. He created several booklets of Snowman’s adventures; one was adapted by comic-book artist John Giunta. Frank penciled and Giunta inked, and it was published in Tally Ho Comics No. 1, December 1944. The other figures on the page are good examples of his animation art. I feel really lucky to have been able to acquire this page, as originals from this early are quite difficult to find.

Frazetta’s animation art for comic books has been reprinted in at least two books: Small Wonders (1991) and Frazetta Funny Stuff (2012).

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In attesa di qualche nuovo ragguaglio, ai cortesi visitors non dispiacerà, credo, né questa rara interpretazione di paperi antropomorfi (Hucky Duck) resa nel dopoguerra da un Frank Frazetta in cerca di committenza, né l’interpretazione muta, nel video che segue, di Jennie Batchelder.

ASL (American Sign Language) music videos, exemplified perfectly by smokin’ hot hottie-hot Jennie Batchelder in her fantastic interpretation of Michael Franti‘s The Sound of Sunshine.

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RETTIFICO
Ad un esame più attento si scopre che la storiella inedita di Sheldon Mayer era nata per il comic book della National DC PLOP!, che probabilmente ha chiuso i battenti prima che le tavole fossero “lavorate” (con lettering e sgommature). Lo si deduce bene da qualche scritta a lapisa qua e là che non avevo notato a un primo superficiale sguardo.

Siamo, quindi, intorno al 1978, se non prima. Lo stile di Mayer è “evoluto” e in sintonia con quello degli altri autori di Plop!, da Sergio Aragonés a Basil Wolverton, del quale venivano riciclate alcune mostruose illustrazioni per le copertine.