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Disclaimer: If you are easily offended by sheer honesty, or you think me having my own opinions is "being negative", then this is not the place for you, and I suggest you leave and head elsewhere. I call a spade a spade, and I don't sugarcoat anything.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Hollywood Caricatures

I've been studying many things this week, but one thing my supervisor is urging me to do finally is finish this story! She doesn't yet know about me having done the horse book and putting it on the site. Well, she didn't until last night. Then she got a little angry and said she wants this story done. The thing that has been stopping me from finishing the story is doing the images of celebrities from the 20s, 30s and 40s. They are not easy to do at all! Not as easy as the old cartoonists make it look! So I had to watch a few cartoons that depict caricaturized celebs, and look on the internet for some drawings and examples and see how other people have done it. I used to be so into the old movie stars from the 20s to 40s! You would think I'd know how to draw them caricaturized! But I don't. I never really practiced that. Well! I can't really say I never practiced it, but before I had some help. So I had to bite the bullet and tell myself that this needs to be done and it's now or never! And if it didn't work out, I was going to put the bullet back into the gun and shoot myself!! I might as well to! Because if I don't get this story done and on the site soon, my supervisor is going to kill me anyway!! LOL! Just kidding there.

Over the years, UMG Productions has been depicting many different celebs in our stories. The first was the Marx Brothers, actually depicted on the cover page of Caroline Falls in Love. That story was created very early in 1984. It's a good story, but I like Caroline, the Sequel that came out a month later. It's funnier! But there are no celebs in that story. From there, we just went on and on with other public figures, including very briefly Lorne Greene, and for one story, Roxette. In 1986, a story was written by Katrina O'hara that included the comedian Ray Walston and the very handsome Bill Bixby. She too loved My Favorite Martian because she had the same last name as the main characters. Funny how people feel that way! Every kid named Ariel loves The Little Mermaid, I had a friend named Veronica and she LOVED the Archies because of Veronica. And Ms. O'hara from our original group loved My Favorite Martian because she had the last name O'hara. I asked Trisha, my supervisor, if she still has a copy of Ms. O'hara's story with Ray Walston and Bill Bixby, she said she'd look, and I know what that means! She'll look when she gets the time to, which may be as soon as Easter, 2012! If I remember it was a funny story about a circus, and Tony the lemur from the story The Discouraged Lemur. Katrina O'hara never finished that story, but she left what she finished with me, and I completed it. I gave it to Trisha when we moved from Toutle. There were other celebs in that circus, but I mostly remember Ray Walston and Bill Bixby.

Also, we've done stories with INXS, with Michael Hutchence, The 3 Stooges, Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, countless other celebs from the early days, I even did a story that depicted Bob Hope. I still have his signed pic that he exchanged with me when I was a teenager! It ain't going NOwhere!! I'm keeping that as a momento from when we did a picture exchange. I kinda miss him now that he is gone. That was a real sad day. He told me I look cute in my pic! hehe! Unfortunately that I cannot prove now because his letter was kept in a box in our old family room in Lakewood, and everything in that box was destroyed when we had a flood. I not only lost that letter from him, I lost a lot of my original drawings of Metazoic mammals, and Anna lost a lot of historic Mount St. Helens articles. Those you cannot get anymore! I still have my autographed pic from Bob Hope though, I kept that away in a photo album. Some day I am thinking of having it framed and put up. Anyway, we've even done some stories that have characters who are not so good, like Bin Ladin. hehe! And we treated him like the 1940s cartoons treated Hitler. LOL! We clobbered him!! Well, actually Katrina and Elmer clobbered him. That was from 2003. We've even done a story with people who have been gone for longer than the 1920s, 30s and 40s. Like Mozart, Beethoven, and Bach. The problem with doing caricatures of those people is all we have to go by are paintings and statues. Not always easy!

Some people would argue that this is all fan-art and is bordering on delusional. I have to laugh at that statement!! Because it is FUNNY!!!! If that is so, then a lot of the cartoonists from the 30s and 40s were delusional. That was the "in" thing back then, cartoons with caricatures. I personally do it because it's actually fun. I'm not the best caricature artist on the planet (that's for sure!!) but the more I do it the better I will get. I'm not into adding copious amounts of detail, like the cartoonists do today. I'm not interested in making these guys look scary, like most people seem to enjoy today. I just want to make these caricatures look at least somewhat like the people they are supposed to look like. There is really no right or wrong way to do caricatures, but the best way is to emphasize peoples' most exaggerated features. Like Bing Crosby was famous for his big, blue eyes. His eyes were also very droopy, kinda like those of a hound dog. So most of the time when you see a caricature of him, his eyes are the most indelible features on him. Same with W.C. Fields, and his big, red nose. He was one of the hardest caricatures I've had to do for this story! It was actually quite tough finding a drawing of him because most of the time, when other cartoonists did him, they did him up as a pig! Not a person. But I found a few I could use as a guide, and that was all I needed. I'm still working on this story, in between working on the logos for our company. My partner was not too keen on the ones I did for him last time. He liked them, but he said a logo is supposed to have a transparent background. So I said OK. So that is what I am doing.

In my research, I found another blog of a cartoon fanatic. He stated how the celebs of yesteryear seem to be more caricaturized than the celebs of today. People had more fun doing them back then, and did them more often. You hardly see today's celebs being caricaturized at all, except for a few jabs at Paris Hilton and Britney Spears. I told him I could answer his question why. Because today's celebrities don't have any character. In the 20s and 30s, you had mostly Jewish celebs, and nobody has more in the way of facial features than the old Jewish race!! Not so much now, but then, they were probably more "pure". They had big eyes, big noses, funny hairlines and hair styles, ya know, the works! Plus, today's celebs are not funny! More people are into being dramatic than funny. So, it's not so much fun doing caricatures of today's celebs. Nor cartoons or anything.
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