Tuesday, July 03, 2007

The Harrison and Gould Krazy Kat crew, circa 1928

Harrison and Gould studio, circa 1930
Click on the thumbnail for a full image

From left to right: Mike Balukas, inker; Al Woodley,cameraman; Al Windley, cameraman; Ira Gould, painter; Al Gould, painter; Berny Wolf, then an inker (who died in September 2006 at the age of ninety-five); Al Rose, animator; Harry Love, assistant animator; Manny Gould, animator-director; Sid Marcus, animator; Ben Harrison, animator-director; Jimmy (later Shamus) Culhane, inker and assistant animator; Art Davis, animator; unknown painter; office boy; Dave Tendlar, inker and assistant animator.

The Charles Mintz studio was the third to produce cartoons based on George Herriman's Krazy Kat comic strip. This picture was taken the year that Mintz bought out the rights to Walt Disney's Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, forcing Disney and Ub Iwerks to come up with a mouse character instead ...

Under the supervision of animator-directors Ben Harrison and Manny Gould, the Krazy Kat crew abandoned Herriman's free-flowing style in favor of a generic assembly-line approach closer to Felix the Cat. According to Shamus Culhane:

If you had a gag where somebody was hit by something, you automatically had it happen three times, because you used the drawings over again.

Good thing no one makes cartoons that way any more ;)

In 1930 Mintz moved his studio from Manhattan to L. A. Many of the same artists appear in this photo, adapted to the West Coast style.

More about the Mintz Studio here.


Anonymous said...

Not that this makes me feel OLD or anything, but I knew/worked with THREE of the guys in this photo!
I was in Harry Love's (Hanna Barbera) training class in 77, assisted Dave Tendlar there a year or two later, and freelanced for Bernie Wolf on a commercial a few years after that.
Though Harry Love was, as many might remember,occasionally crude and more than a bit boastful,one had to give him props for his quirky humor,career longevity, and enthusiastic instruction of us youg'uns.
Dave Tendlar.. what can I say-- he was a sweetheart..(He always reminded me of an un-befuddled 'Floyd the Barber' on the Andy Griffith Show.) A pleasure to work with, he had endless patience for us newbies, and taught us a lot.
He had also worked for Fleischer's in the wayback, and needless to say, working with a Popeye/Betty Boop/Superman animator was endlessly cool.
Bernie Wolf was a true gentleman of our craft.. When I called to drop off the freelance I did for him, he suggested I meet him and his wife Muriel for lunch.A lovely afternoon I'll always remember.
Yup-- being a little 'older' in this biz has it's perks, believe it or not. Just having the privilege to have known and worked with some of these great vets tops the list for me.

Steve Hulett said...

How many artists/animators have you seen lately who come to work in suits?

And three-piece suits?

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