Friday, April 1, 2011

Art Appreciation: Martin Filchock & The Humor Digests!

April Fools!!! Every year, the week before April 1st, I say to myself, "Hey! I've got a great idea for an April Fools Day joke", but the ideas I have usually require a ton of time and effort, and one week simply isn't enough time to get anything done. And then there's the fact that if I did post something on April 1st, I would imagine that people just aren't stupid enough to believe something that came-out of nowhere & was posted on somebody's blog. Still, even if I can't think of something clever that takes no time what-so-ever to do for today, I can still do something mildly entertaining, like another post focusing on the legendary Martin Filchock including some of his humor digest work. In 1936, Martin Filchock started working for The Comics Magazine Company, contributing features like "The C.C. Kid" and "Windy", and occasionally providing cover artwork. When the comic work dried-up, he moved on to providing one-page gags to Joseph J. Hardie & Raymond J. Kelly's humor digests. Presented today are a few of Filchock's covers, some pages from Star Ranger Funnies, and a few of his humor digest pages. In interviews, Filchock has stated that while working for The Comics Magazine Company, and then for Hardie & Kelly starting in 1938, he was paid $5.00 per page. It wasn't bad money for the time. I've seen Bob Lubbers state that he was paid $6.00 per page, while Lew Glanz (aka Louis Glanzman) says he was paid about $7.50 (but he also colored his own work). Anyway, when Filchock started providing artwork for Hardie & Kelly's humor digests (something he continued doing well into the 1950s), he was still paid $5.00 per page. That's not a bad deal, since, as you can see, the amount of work that went into a gag page was considerably less than what he put into a regular comic book page.

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