Obscure Images: Gluyas Williams Orchestra Illustrations

There’s been a great thread on Gluyas Williams going on at the Comics Journal message board recently, with a lot of nice cartoons and illustrations from him. Mike Hunter, who started the thread, just posted a link to this auction of some wonderful Williams illustrations of various members of an orchestra. His cartoons show so much character even without any words… Williams is truly a master of subtle character observation. Here they are for your enjoyment.

I’ve posted a number of Williams cartoons on this site previously that can be seen here. You can see some more great stuff by Gluyas Williams at gluyaswilliams.com, at The Stripper’s Guide, and at Barnacle Press.

Click on the below images to see larger versions.

Obscure Images: Wally Wood’s Spawn of Venus

It’s pretty amazing the treasure you can find on Ebay without even buying anything. I’m talking about the images that get posted there. Like these ones. Here are the images for an auction I ran across here for the complete pencils for an unfinished Wally Wood story for EC comics. Here is what the auction description says about them:

WALLY WOOD (1927 – 1981) graduated from New York’s School of Visual Arts, and was an early assistant on THE SPIRIT. His early work includes romance stories for Fox and science fiction stories for Avon, which led to his joining the EC staff in 1950, where he usually worked on the science fiction titles, while also contributing some amazing work to SHOCK SUSPENSTORIES. After the Comics Code came into effect, Wood continued to contribute to MAD, while also moving on to Marvel, where he worked on early issues of DAREDEVIL and THE AVENGERS. In the late ’60s, Wood joined Tower Comics as art director, where he created T.H.U.N.D.E.R. AGENTS. He also created the sexy CANNON and SALLY FORTH for Overseas Weekly in 1971.

This is the original pencil art for an never-finished complete 8-page story titled “The Spawn of Venus” that was slated to appear in a third issue of Three-Dimensional EC Classics, and was based on a story drawn by Al Feldstein in Weird Science #6. These pages are in very good condition with avearge wear and aging; there are also doodles and loose sketches on the backs of several pages. The pages have an image area of 13″ x 18″.

Here are the pages…

Page 1
Page 2
Page 3
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6
Page 7
Page 8

These are probably big enough to reasonably ink if printed. If anyone out there wants to ink them, I would love to link to your inking job.

Billy Bounce (1906)

Here are some of the many illustrations I found from William Wallace Denslow’s Billy Bounce book from 1906, which is presented in its entirety on Google Book Search here.

Denslow is better known as the illustrator of The Wizard of Oz, and he also created the Billy Bounce comic strip. We previously presented some Billy Bounce comic strips from 1903 and 1904 by C.W. Kahles, who followed Denslow on the comic strip feature.

The book being published in 1906 indicates that Denslow must have still had controlling interest of the comic strip feature after his departure from it. It is also interesting to note that none of the other regular characters from the Billy Bounce strip appear to be in the book, although I haven’t read it so I may be wrong.

Although Billy Bounce is pretty thorougly forgotten at this point, in his time he was apparently popular enough to be featured on a wide array of merchandise… including cigars! Read more about Billy Bounce at Toonopedia.

See more Billy Bounce comic strips at Barnacle Press here (by both Denslow and Kahles).

You can download the full book as a pdf here.

Larger versions of all images can be seen by clicking on them, which will take you to the appropriate page of the book on Google Book Search.

BOB SCULLY: The 2 Fisted Hick Detective

I ran across an auction for this hilarious and amazing looking, very early all original material comic book from 1933 on Ebay today… more images can be seen there.

Here’s what comics historian Robert Beerbohm says about this book (in an excerpt from his upcoming book Comics Archeology 101 called ORIGIN OF THE MODERN COMIC BOOK 1 1919-1933) here:

With the 1933 newsstand appearance of Humor’s Detective Dan, Adventures of Detective Ace King, Bob Scully, Two Fisted Hick Detective, and possibly the still unrediscovered but definitely advertised Happy Mulligan, these little understood original-material comic books were the direct inspiration for Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster to transform their fanzine’s evil character The Superman from Science Fiction #3 (January 1933) into a comic strip that would stand as a watershed heroic mark in American pop culture. The stage was set for a new frontier.

Obscure Images: Early Wolverton Original and Herriman Cigarette Buttons

Did you already buy that Milt Gross painting? No? Well, you could take that 600 bucks burning a hole in your pocket and bid on original art for this early, obscure Basil Wolverton strip instead.

What’s that? You don’t have $600? Well, I suppose you could bid on these two George Herriman cigarette pins made for Hassan and Tokio cigarettes in 1909 going for $16.50 and $12.50 respectively.

OK, I’ll stop now.

Obscure Images: The Fantastic Basil Wolverton

Most good cartoonists do at least one thing really well… Basil Wolverton did a whole lot of things better than about anybody. He was the master in his time of hilarious, crazy, surreal, cartoony art (indeed, he is the father of the “spaghetti and meatball” school of cartooning). He was also fantastic at caricature, science fiction comics and horror comics. He even did amazing bible adaptations. Here is some of the great obscure Wolverton art from comicartfans.com. I recommend clicking on them to see larger versions on the comicartfans.com site. Note that there is more Wolverton to be found there as well if you do a search for him.

I think these are the only Wolverton pencils I’ve ever seen… some preliminary drawings for some Spacehawk comics.

In addition to his insane cartooning talents, the man was also a charming musician… go here to hear his wonderful rendition of I’m Always Chasing Rainbows.

There are some excellent reprints of his work out there, and more to come soon, including a big art book and a collection of his bible work! Those should both be spectacular, I think.

Go here to visit the Wolverton family site run by his son Monte (who is also a cartoonist).

Go here to read about Basil Wolverton on lambiek.net.