Nigel Parkinson, Cartoonist

Nigel Parkinson, Cartoonist
This is him, at a recent Comic Con

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Dudley's Dan

Here's the original art from the April Fool's issue of The Dandy in 1938. Slick and funny drawing by the legendary Dudley Dexter Watkins, the dynamo of D C Thomson.
Nice, isn't it?


Lew Stringer said...

Excellent. This is the sort of thing that set The Dandy apart from its rivals. The humour is quite brutal, and the execution of the strip is proper comics, leading the eye effortlessly from panel to panel. One can forgive the lack of backgrounds because they aren't necessary to the story. This is pure, fast-paced comedy violence. Thanks for sharing that, Nigel!

Peter Gray said...

I love Dudleys work..

I just can't get enough of it great there is over 40 years work out there to enjoy still:)

Kid said...

Nice, but it's not Dudley at his best. Although Dudley 'not at his best' was still a 1000 times better than some artists today. (And yesterday.)

Apparently Dudley's first work appeared in The Boots News when he was only 16. (He wasn't paid for it.) When I was about 17, The Boots News paid me £25 for a full page comic strip which I wrote, drew and lettered.

Before anybody reminds me that that's the only thing I have in common with D.D.W. ("It certainly ain't talent!" I hear some people cry), I'm grateful for even the smallest point of similitude.

The only artist today that even comes close to Watty in style is Ken H. Harrison.

Lew Stringer said...

True, but Ken was employed to mimic Dudley Watkins' style so there's bound to be similarities.

Not that I'm dismissing Ken's talent of course. He's an amazing artist in his own right. My personal favourites of his accomplishments were 'The Hoot Squad' pages that ran in Hoot.

Kid said...

All artists since Watkins have been employed to mimic his style on Oor Wullie and the Broons, but only Harrison has been able to do so without producing art which is merely a pastiche of what came before. Even the mighty Robert Nixon couldn't do the strips justice.

However, I don't believe that Harrison merely 'mimicked' Watkin's style. True, he made sure the characters were 'on-model', but he did so with a grace, fluidity and spontaneity which were entirely his own. And he had a more varied repertoire on which to draw when it came to backgrounds and composition.

The current artist, Peter Davidson, is a competent enough artist, 'though he seems to draw everything from the same stilted point of view, but Harrison is definitely Watkin's heir to the throne, in my humble opinion. His style is like Watkins inked by Terry Beatty - extremely polished. And he draws great-looking women.

Rabsmith said...

one Editor I spoke to at DCT [I won't name him] actually preferred the Harrison version over Dudley.

The old reprints ran for far too long: they're fine to rediscover later, but the weekly comic sorely needed brand-new Dan material, and Dave Torrie's decision to employ K H H on Dan was one of his best-ever Editorial decisions, in my view.

George Shiers said...

I really like Dudly's Orr Wullie, The Broons and Biffo the Bear! I've just been reading the 1956 Beano Book and the artwork is fantastic!