Archive for November, 2013


November 25, 2013

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Sam Berman (1906–1995)[1] was an American caricaturist of the 1940s and 1950s.[2]

Berman was in high school when he began drawing cartoons for the Hartford Courant. He went to New York to study art and then landed a position as a staff cartoonist for the Newark Star Eagle. During the 1930s his political cartoons were published in color in Collier’s.

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After WWII, he did art for advertising agencies and created caricatures of leading radio performers for NBC’s promotion, The NBC Parade of Stars as Seen by Sam Berman: As Heard over Your Favorite NBC Station (1947), which had a print run of 5,000,000. With a tight deadline, he created caricatures of NBC’s most popular radio personalities and shows, each printed on a separate 6″x7″ card, and inserted in a green vinyl slipcase. The set of 56 caricatures included Fred Allen, Jack Benny, Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy, Milton Berle, George Burns and Gracie Allen, Judy Canova, Eddie Cantor, Jerry Colonna, Dennis Day, Bob Hope, Eddy Howard, H. V. Kaltenborn, Kay Kyser, Art Linkletter, Robert Merrill, Frank Sinatra and Red Skelton, as well as the stars of Amos ‘n’ Andy.

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His advertising art included a unique approach of caricaturing ordinary people, as seen in his Pitney-Bowes Postage Meter ad which ran in The Saturday Evening Post in 1955. His children’s books include Pixie Pete’s Christmas Party (1937), Miriam Schlein’s Shapes (Scott Foresman, 1952) and Dinosaur Joke Book (Grosset & Dunlap, 1969). Other books illustrated by Berman include Sullivan Bites News: Perverse News Items (Little, Brown, 1954) by Frank Sullivan.

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As head of his own map-making firm, he created an unusual relief map, the six-foot Geo-Physical Globe. Berman lived in Chappaqua, New York and later lived in Spain.

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Berman died in 1995, aged 89.

From Wikipedia

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November 18, 2013


Harry Devlin was born in Jersey City on March 22, 1918. When Harry was just eight years old, his artistic talent became evident. In the third grade at the William Livingston School in Elizabeth, a picture he drew on the blackboard so amazed the teacher. He continued to flourish through junior high school, where he became the sole illustrator for the school’s main publication, The Marquis.

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In 1935, Harry graduated from high school. He then began attending Syracuse University, and majored in illustration. During his senior year he met his future wife, Dorothy Wende, majoring in Fine Arts. They were married on August 30, 1941 and had seven children.

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On October 30, 1942, Harry began his active duty in the Navy as an Ensign. He was assigned to the Office of Naval Intelligence and assumed responsibility for all illustrations necessary for members of the armed services to identify enemy planes. Rising to the rank of lieutenant at the end of World War II, Devlin returned to a private life and began a ten-year association with Collier’s Weekly. He created editorial cartoons and illustrations for the magazine’s advertisements and articles. From 1946 to 1955, in addition to his work for Collier’s, Harry illustrated the stories written each week by Bob Considine and Dorothy Kilgallen for the Saturday Home Magazine. During the early 1950’s Harry also produced editorial cartoons for The New York Daily News. Unlike Collier’s, he developed his own themes and enjoyed the creativity of the experience. However; when the News asked Harry to print a cartoon in support of Senator Joseph McCarthy, Harry refused as a matter of principle, and was promptly fired. By 1957, Collier’s Weekly was out of business, as television succeeded in taking over most of the advertising market.

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In 1963, his wife (Wende known by her friends) wrote and Harry illustrated Old Black Witch, which along with its two sequels, have sold over one-and-one-half million copies. A long list of children’s books came in time; most were written by Wende and illustrated by Harry.

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Today, Devlin’s works can be found in several New   Jersey private, corporate, and museum collections including the Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum and the Morris Museum of Art.

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Harry Devlin passed away in November 25, 2001

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November 4, 2013

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Harold James Mowat once described his work as: “My medium is a piece of white paper and a black pencil, sometimes a bit of dirt from the floor. When I work, I’m at it from morning until late at night. I haven’t known the meaning of true peace of mind for years, but I infinitely prefer the uncertainties and struggles of the illustrator to any other game on earth.”


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H.J. Mowat was born in Montreal, Canada in 1879. He studied art at the New York School of Art. He always preferred to work in black and white, most of the time obscuring much of the details but also highlighting other areas for an overall tonality. He never quite achieved the popularity of some of his colleagues like F.R. Gruger, Arthur William Brown, Raeburn Van Buren. None the less, he was well respected and admired by his fellow artists who acknowledged his dedication. Mowat did a lot of work for the major publications during his time, such as The Saturday Evening Post, Ladies Home Journal, McCall’s, and Redbook. Mowat never became as popular with the public as did most of his more facile coworkers.

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The reason Mowat wasn’t able to attain the heights of other artists was the fact that he lavished so much time and expense on his models fees that he would barely brake even and the fact that he worked painfully slow.

Where it not for these I weaknesses I believe H.J. Mowat would have given the likes of F.R. Gruger, Arthur William Brown, Raeburn Van Buren and others a run for their money.

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H.J. Mowat passed away in 1949