Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Irv Spence's Cartoon Diary: October 29, 1944

Most likely the museum referred to here is the Natural History Museum in Exposition Park.

The creature may have been part of the bird hall exhibit on the second floor. Maybe he's the bony guy on the right.

And, to bring this all back to the topic of animation, the museum also has an early Disney camera stand on display.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Irv Spence's Cartoon Diary: October 27, 1944

An Irv Spence model sheet for Avery's "Hound Hunters," ("What Price Fleadom" was the working title) featuring "those bears."

Friday, October 25, 2013

Irv Spence's Cartoon Diary: October 25, 1944

Gus Arriola started his brief animation career as an inbetweener at the Charles Mintz studio. He moved over to MGM in 1937, where he became an assistant animator and, finally, a story sketch artist, primarily in Rudy Ising's unit.

"Gus Arriola, artist and creator of the "Gordo" cartoon series, poses with some admirers."
Los Angeles Daily News, 1946; 
Los Angeles Times photographic archive, UCLA Library

Arriola left MGM in 1941 after selling his comic strip Gordo to United Features. He was drafted in 1942 and found himself back with Ising in the First Motion Picture Unit at Fort Roach. Gordo went on hiatus on October 28, 1942 ("Remember that the only one to blame for unpleasant changes these days ees that dorty jork - Heetler!!") and returned as a Sunday half-page in May of '43. The daily strip returned in 1946 and ran until 1985. According to the World Encyclopedia of Comics, Gordo "became one of the most widely published and read strips in the country."

An interview with Arriola from Hogan's Alley can be found here.

Below are some of Arriola's model sheets of the bad guy from Hugh Harman's The Lonesome Stranger, followed by some early sketches of Gordo that used the bad guy as a point of departure. These drawings are from the book Accidental Ambassador Gordo by Robert C. Harvey and Gus Arriola.

Gus Arriola passed away on February 2, 2008. His work has been archived at the Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Monday, October 07, 2013

Irv Spence's Cartoon Diary: October 7, 1944

The game was USC vs. Berkeley, and ended in a tie.

Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, in the '30s.

USC and the Coliseum. Photo is undated, but seems to be from the '20s or '30s.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Irv Spence's Cartoon Diary: October 5, 1944

An undated photo by Carmen Maxwell and pilfered from Bill Hanna's book, of the MGM cartoon studio.

The studio was located at the northeast corner of MGM's Lot 2, at Overland and Montana Avenues.

The building is long gone, as is Montana Ave. for that matter (it's now called Palm Court Way.) Lot 2 is now the location of the Culver City Senior Center and a housing development with streets named after some MGM stars. See it from space here.