Sunday, August 12, 2012

The Female Approach

Until the launch of our money raising campaign prepare for oodles of St. Trinian's information and production updates.

When Matt and I showed Ronald the animation test in September 2010, I also had with me a drawing which I found at an auction somewhere in the English countryside. It is the cover of "The Female Approach". I was able to buy the drawing for a fairly low price because it didn't have a signature but I knew immediately that it was Ronald's work.
"The Female Approach" is a collection of a variety of Ronald's early cartoons but also features a generous selection of St. Trinian's illustrations. The foreword is by Sir Max Beerbohm who was a famous British essayist and caricaturist and that must have been a great honor at the time.
Ronald's own acknowledgement reads: with a few unpublished exceptions these drawings have appeared over the last few years in the pages of 'Liliput', 'London Opinion', 'Men Only' and 'Pie". I am indebted to the editorial departments of these magazines for their tolerant co-operation. To my wife, Kaye Webb, and to the flowers of English youth (the Lower Fourth) I offer obeisance as a continual fount of inspiration. 
When I showed him the drawing, he was very surprised. He took out one of those jeweler loupes from his pocket and studied the line up close. He told us that the drawing wasn't really very good but couldn't deny that it was by him. He hadn't seen it  in over sixty years.

The drawing ink has faded to a light brown over the years but some areas are still dark black. In the time just after the war Ronald used a type of floor varnish for drawing, proper ink was too expensive to use for the entire piece. The floor varnish faded over time but the proper ink remained black.
Look how tiny and wispy the features are drawn. Ronald must have had eagle eyes when he was a young man. 

And when Matt and I left Monica and Ronald that day, he signed the drawing for me. 


Drazen said...

Man thats awesome!

Harry said...

THE FEMALE APPROACH may be the best book of cartoons ever done by anyone, anytime. i discovered my father's copy when I was a kid, and have given it as a gift.

Matt J said...

The AMerican edition had a different cover

Uli Meyer said...

It looks like the American edition also featured different cartoons. And I like the English cover better. Naturally...


great signature... and a really well worded dedication there.. Cool stuff Man..