COMIC STRIP FAVOURITES
What have been some of my favourite strips over the years, and what strips have influenced me in my own cartooning career?
I think it is fairly natural to be influenced by anything you like, so each one of my favourite strips will have, even if only subconsciously, been influential to some degree.
I am sure that not everyone would share my exact same thoughts about my comic strip favourites. But, then, cartoon appreciation is like any other form of artistic and creative endeavour....it is very subjective.
So, here is a list of my Top Twenty comic strips that I have, over many years enjoyed (with a brief explanation of why).
They are arranged alphabetically here, not in any order of favoritism.I hope you will find some of your own favourites here, too. (Please use the comments section to add some of your own comic strip favourites.)
Following the list of strips are a number of BUSHY TALES strips that incorporated other comic strip names into the story (over 100 in one week!).
BROOM HILDA - (Russell Myers) - This strip got me in with its bold line and use of solid blacks...not to mention the creative characterization and humour.
CALVIN & HOBBES - (Bill Watterson) - What hasn't already been said about this strip? It was, truly, a "one-of-a-kind" comic strip. Literally, it turned the cartoon world upside down and I doubt if there is a cartoonist anywhere who has not been influenced by it.
I always found the artwork in C&H particularly impressive.
CROCK - (Rechin & Wilder) - I loved the crazy humour of this strip. One of the few strips that used to make me chuckle out loud.
FOXTROT - (Bill Amend) - This was a very refreshing take on the modern family. The characters were very well-defined and they interacted with great humour, both in word and visually. It was a favourite of my family as they grew up, too.
HAGAR - (Dick Browne)- Now drawn by his son, the strip, in my opinion, was far better in its early years as Dick Browne let his artistic genius follow his creative imagination.
MOTHER GOOSE AND GRIMM - (Mike Peters) - This strip comes as close as any to giving an animation feel to the artwork. The characters, well-drawn as they are, are taken into an even more impressive realm when given the action treatment that Peters likes to use.
MUTTS - (Patrick McDonnell) - I haven't read as much of this strip as some of the others, but what I have read over the years I really enjoy. McDonnell has a lovely style and the strip has a wonderful whimsy about it. His Sunday strips employ great variation in the layout.
PEANUTS - (Charles Schulz) - Who has not, at some time, been drawn into the world of this legendary strip? I think it taught us all some things about communicating through cartoon characters.
PICKLES - (Brian Crane) - A more recent favourite...I don't think I have read a single Pickles strip that I thought was weak. There is great consistency in this story of an old couple.
POGO - (Walt Kelly) - Back when the comic strips were given plenty of space cartoonists were able to produce works of great visual appeal. None more so than Walt Kelly with Pogo. His, characters were brilliant and the quality of his drawing and presentation was amazing.
SHOE - (Jeff Macnelly) - I really loved the dry, sarcastic humour of this strip, as well as the style of Macnelly's drawing. His artwork was quite reflective of his work as an award-winning political cartoonist.
SNAKE TALES - (Alan "Sols" Salisbury) - One of the great Australian strips. Widely published in Australia and, for a time, syndicated throughout the USA.
SWAMP - (Gary Clark) - A wonderfully popular and much-awarded Australian strip. Gary has produced a beautifully crafted and consistently entertaining comic strip based around the animals, reptiles and insects found in your typical Aussie swamp.
TEN CATS - (Graham Harrop) - This strip has become one of my recent favourites. Graham, an Englishman living in Canada, has produced a beautifully drawn heartwarming and funny strip about 10 stray cats that live in a warehouse and are cared for by Annie, a young girl. I love the way Graham has developed distinct personalities for each of the ten cats. The strip was awarded the NCS Reuben Award for best webcomic in 2013. Thoroughly deserved. Graham recently sent me one of the original TEN CATS strips....a treasured item!
THE BORN LOSER - (Art Sansom) - Simple, uncluttered artwork, the appeal of this strip for me was in the humour more than the artwork. Brutus Thornapple (the born loser) finds an endless number of ways to end up losing at home, at work...anywhere and everywhere. A lot of fun.
ZITS - (Jerry Scott & Jim Borgman) - A wonderfully drawn and scripted strip about a high school teenager and his interactions (or not) with his family, friends and the world. A modern-day classic.
So, there you have it...my top twenty favourites.
But what about yours? I'd love to know which strips you enjoy. Use the Comments section of the blog to share your favourite comics.
And, don't forget.......
QUESTIONS & ANSWERS (Q&A)
So...if you have any questions about BUSHY TALES, or cartooning in general, please send them to: firstname.lastname@example.org