Monday, June 01, 2009

More Art books

Theodore Geisel had a long career writing and illustrating for humor magazines in the 20's and 30's long before he became Dr. Seuss. This collection of pieces is fascinating to me cuz it's interested to see how the good doctor's ideas developed over time. (For example, that animal pulling the plow -- sorry, plough -- on the cover looks a whole lot like the title character in my favorite Seussian epic "Horton Hatches The Egg". ) There are essays here, educational charts, tons of cartoons. Not all of it is polished or politically correct, but all of it is interesting -- and still funny after all these years.
Not many people can say they invented a genre -- Siegel and Shuster, Jimmie Rodgers are all I can think of offhand. Oh, and Reed Waller, whose groundbreaking "Omaha the Cat Dancer" introduced the world to a soap opera with hardcore sex and all the characters are members of the animal kingdom. A bunch of books sprung up to imitate this original. I believe the genre is called "Furries" but I've never been interested in any of the copycats. The original is amazing though. (And there will be more about Omaha when we get to the graphic novel section.)

BTW, one reason I've undertaken this project is to straemline my collection some. I'm taking them all off the shelves and revisiting each and every one of them. Some of them I realize have served their purpose here and can go live somewhere else for a while. Such was the case with the book "How to Draw Caricatures."
Caricaturing is one of many things I'm interested in, but this book doesn't hold much appeal to me, as I don't like the artist's style very much. So I let it go.

BTW, this should be the end of the art section but it's not. I'll explain why next time.

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