So here’s the last batch of character reference.

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Incidental charactersChar Ref 2017-09-22-0038.jpgChar Ref 2017-09-22-0036.jpgChar Ref 2017-09-22-0037.jpg


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Another piece of artwork used in the Tale Spin sales pitch.Char Ref 2017-09-22-0055.jpg

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That’s it for the character art. Next come some prop reference.








Here are some more character illustrations. [NOTE: These were scanned from photocopies, so the quality isn’t the greatest.]

An early Thembrian… probably Col. Spigot.

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A pair of Shere Khan’s pilots (based on Bagheera). Also used in Tale Spin sales pitch.

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Early members of Don Karnage’s “wolf pack.” (A chicken??)

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A couple of monkeys. The left one may be a precursor to Wild Cat.

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These two views of Baloo crack me up. The left one shows a bomber jacket with epaulettes plus a Hawaiian shirt. (A Rescue Rangers clone?) And on the right, Baloo dons a sporty vest while he plays ‘kick the can.’ Char Ref 2017-09-22-0023.jpg

More tomorrow!





So I’m desperately trying to weed through my storage shed; tossing things out, selling stuff on eBay, and mostly scanning documents. So yesterday I stumbled across a thick black binder labeled “Tale Spin Inspirations and Models 9-7-89.”  Wow!  What an amazing reference document. There are pages and pages of artwork showing early character art (both from Tale Spin and Jungle Book), architecture, props, etc. Today I’m frantically scanning this stuff, cuz it’s so cool.

I thought you might like to see some samples.  You’ll notice that Baloo doesn’t have any clothing on in some of the illustrations. That’s probably because the artists were working from Jungle Book reference and were replaced Kit with Mowgli. Enjoy!

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The art below was used on one of the art cards in the Tale Spin sales pitch.Char Ref 2017-09-22-0005.jpgChar Ref 2017-09-22-0006.jpg

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Tomorrow, more character artwork.



Film Comment autographs

Back in 1975 I purchased a special “animation” issue of Film Comment. I was still stationed at the Pentagon back then… a full year before I knew I’d be working at Disney. But I was a big toon buff even then.

Fortunately, I still had the magazine when I started meeting some animation legends, so I made sure I  got some autographs! Enjoy.

Here’s the cover of that zine.

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I started work on the Gummi Bears in 1984. Two of the actors we hired were Bill Scott (who played Gruffi Gummi) and June Foray (who placed Grammi Gummi). Here are their signatures.

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I heard Chuck speak at the Kennedy Center in 1975.

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Willie Ito has a long and distinguished career in animation from Disney to Warner to Hanna-Barbera. He sat just a couple of offices away from me. (https://www.lambiek.net/artists/i/ito_willy.htm)

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Cal Howard (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cal_Howard) also sat a few offices away. He worked at Fleischer years ago, so he showed up at work with a friend one day… Jack Mercer, the voice of Popeye!

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Do you think this magazine is worth more than a buck and a half now?

Animation Autographs

As part of my goal to clean out the rats-nest I call an office, I discovered an old Film Comment magazine from January 1975.

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At that time I was a Lieutenant JG in the Navy, stationed at the Pentagon – but I was also a huge animation fan. This Film Comment issue was devoted to toons, so I snatched it up… primarily because I was going to hear Chuck Jones speak at the Kennedy Center, and I was hoping for an autograph. Long story short, I got Chuck’s signature and carried it with me to California (where I moved the following year to work for Disney). Naturally, I ran into more animation folks in Los Angeles, so I managed to pick up a few more autographs for my magazine. Thought you might like to take a peek.

Here’s Chuck’s signature from 1975.

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Working just a few offices from me in the Roy O. Disney building was Willie Ito, who worked on Chuck Jones’ crew. (Willie also worked for Hanna-Barbera, Beanie & Cecil, and Disney feature animation. He even character-designed for WD TV animation in its infancy.)

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Just down the hall from Willie sat Cal Howard who was a Fleischer veteran from the ooooold days. (They even rotoscoped him as the Prince in Gulliver’s Travels.) So one day Cal brings a buddy to the studio, and I hear them talking out in the hallway. And the buddy sounds strangely familiar. It was Jack Mercer – the voice of Popeye!!! Another autograph!

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And of course, when I moved from Walt Disney Music over to TV Animation in 1984, I had the pleasure of working with these two mega-talents. Bill “Bullwinkle” Scott and June “Rocky” Foray. (She called me “dollink”!)

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A real treasure, eh? (Wonder what it’s worth….  Naw, I’d never part with it.)