Archive for February, 2009

“It’s ‘The Cat'” is on My Toons!

Saturday, February 21st, 2009

ha-cha.JPGpop-korn-pg-1.jpgpop-korn-pg-2.jpgmike-2-4-57.jpgmike-2-5-57.jpgmike-2-6-57.jpgmike-2-7-57.jpgmike-2-9-57.jpgkrazy_vintage6-26.gifkrazy_vintage6-27.gifkrazy_vintage6-28.gifkrazy_vintage6-29.gifkrazy_vintage6-30.gifkrazy_vintage7-1.gif   Wow Folks! It’s taken quite a long time, but my cartoon “It’s ‘The Cat'” is now on the My Toons store! Here’s the link: http://www.mytoons.com/markkausler. If you fork over the princely sum of $1.99, you will see the cartoon at full frame rate. I think it plays at reduced frame rate if you just click on the arrow and try to view it for free. Very soon we should have cels for sale from “It’s ‘The Cat'” on this very web site! There will be 52 set-ups in all, mostly from Sc. 3 (the cat on the fence), but quite a few from other points in the cartoon, as well. My cat is rubbing whiskers with “Banjo the Woodpile Cat” by Don Bluth on the My Toons store, among many other cartoons available for paid downloads. So please pay, download, and erase, then repeat as often as you can! Maybe we’ll pay our negative cost back one of these days.

Did you know that the great Disney Donald Duck comic strip artist Al Taliaferro also dabbled in comic books outside of the Disney ranch? Well, here’s “Pop Korn” from Coo-Coo Comics #28 from August, 1946, one of the few stories Al was able to publish under his own by-line. Pop is a goose, not a duck, but his body shape and attitudes certainly suggest Donald, but Pop Korn comes off more like Grandma Duck than anything else. The wolf seems right at home on a rural front porch, not like Zeke Wolf at all. I assume Al wrote the story and inked it too. Let me know what you think.

In strips this week, Marvelous Mike (2/4/1957-2/7, 2-9) walks for the first time, and the Mr. Kosno plot thickens as the Crump’s room at the Miami hotel is ransacked. The strip from 2/8 was missing from the Post-Dispatch microfilm, but the continuity seems pretty clear without it. Krazy Kat is from 6/26/1939 to 7/1, and the week’s strips are all about “Boids and Bugs”, puns on things like “Bowl” Weevils, “Liar” Birds, and so forth. These play like gags Garge was doing in the earliest Krazy Kat dailies from 1913. The design of the Boll Weevil looks a lot like “Archy” from Herriman’s illustrations for the “Archy and Mehitabel” stories by Don Marquis that were published around 1939. Garge drew Archy and Mehitabel in several different designs over the course of the books he illustrated, the Boll Weevil design is just one of Archy’s “looks”.

That very crude drawing of “The Cat” at the top of the page is one of two drawings I have done on a digital “paint” program. It’s like drawing on a chunk of ice with another chunk of ice, so my control was not the greatest, but the result has a bit of life in it anyway, so I’m throwing it out there. Let me know what you think of the My Toons store! See you soon.

Welcome, Please Come In!

Wednesday, February 11th, 2009

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Hello everyone, (and I do mean ONE)! Welcome to the lonely blog! Come in and enjoy our comic offerings for today and the art gallery. Our painting today is by my wife, Catherine Hill and is currently on exhibit in the Contemporary Masters, Artistic Eden II show at the Pasadena Museum of History over on Orange Grove in Pasadena. Head over there for a fine show, featuring local scenes of San Gabriel and Pasadena, with work by the great Ray Harris, Jove Wang, Vic Riseau, Walter McNall, Donald Hildreth and many others. Cathy’s painting is an interior view of the Huntington Library’s art gallery with a group of art lovers enjoying the paintings. I especially like the subtle colors Cathy chose for the walls and way she painted the reflections in the gallery floor. You really should go over to the Museum, which was the Fennes mansion in a former life, and see this beautiful painting for yourself! You have until the end of April to do it.

I was asked to do a tribute to my friend Lyn Kroeger at the Afternoon of Remembrance at the DeMille barn on Saturday afternoon, Feb. 7th. I wrote about her in this very blog a few weeks ago if you recall. Unfortunately I ran a little long, it was hard to decide what to leave in and leave out in my speech. I did cut out a paragraph or two as I went along but that still wasn’t enough, I ran over 5 minutes. It’s frustrating to be hurried at these tributes, at least I was there and prepared. Many of the honorees didn’t have anyone to speak for them. The oldest person that was honored was veteran animator Al Stetter, who lived to be 100 years old! Maybe Lyn was not a veteran animator, but she was a very good assistant and a true artist, so I thought she deserved a good speech. I’m glad I could do it, I owed you one, my friend.

Our comics this week are “Dusty and Littlechief” by Bud Sagendorf from Coo-Coo Comics #4, the concluding two pages. The Japanese spy is socked and bopped all over the place but winds up more humiliated than hurt as they mail him to Washington D.C. as livestock! I wonder what Littlechief wanted the purple paint for? Marvelous Mike this week from 1/28/1957 to 2/2, continues the story of Mr. Kosno as he plants his secret information on Mike at the airport. Mike is already on to the plot in the Feb. 2nd strip, that brilliant little detective. Krazy Kat this week is from 6/19/1939 to 6/24, half the strips feature a continuity with Offissa Pupp’s Mechanical Stool Pigeon machine. It’s supposed to tell when Ignatz is in or out of “Jail”, but malfunctions in the 6/24 strip.

Go to FLIP!

Sunday, February 1st, 2009

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Hi everyone! My wife Catherine Hill is the Featured Artist this month in the February issue of FLIP! FLIP is an on-line magazine devoted to the “Lifestyles of the Hunched and Goofy”, edited by the eminent animator, director and webmaster Steve Moore. Here is the address: www.flipanimation.net/flipiissue20.htm! Head over there to read an article which Cathy wrote about her painting methods and see many jpegs of her recent oil paintings. You’ll be glad you did.

Comics this week are pgs. 3 and 4 of Bud Sagendorf’s “Dusty and Littlechief” from Coo-Coo comics number four. This is pretty anti-Japanese stuff by this time, consider this was 1943 at the height of the hostilities between the Empire of Japan and the Allies. In this strip you get two stereotypes for the price of one, American Indian and Japanese. Littlechief is pretty easily fooled, and Dusty makes like Popeye on the second page when he knocks the Japanese spy clear across the page.

Marvelous Mike by Bob Kuwahara this week is from Jan. 21 to 26th, 1957 and gets into cold war territory when a new character, Mr. Kosno, stumbles over Mike at the airport. It looks like Cliff is going to be led into doing a little smuggling for the aforesaid Mr. Kosno, we’ll see. Krazy Kat this week, from 6/12 to 6/17/1939 features Ignatz trying to make Offissa Pupp’s jail a little more livable by turning it into an office, a hotel and an “Unfair Jail”, picketing it like a Prisoner’s Union member. This might have reflected the union activity in 1939, just before the U.S. entered into the second World War.