Saturday, September 26, 2009

Born This Day: Winsor McCay

Sept. 26, 1987 – July 26, 1934
McCay was one of the great American artists of the last century. He is best known for his newspaper comic strip Little Nemo in Slumberland that ran from 1905 to 1914, and the animated cartoon creation Gertie the Dinosaur (1914). For this cartoon McCay hand drew each frame of film. He took it on a tour of the vaudeville circuit and delighted audiences by being able to ‘interact’ with Gertie. Gertie is considered by many as the first true animated character to be featured in a film.

"Much of what he achieved was simply lost: like a rocket exploding brilliantly in the midnight sky, his work illuminated the medium for a breathtaking instant and then faded into virtual oblivion as, one by one, the scintillating spangles of his achievements winked out, leaving his colleagues as much in the dark as before. He was so far ahead of his time that many of his innovations were beyond the abilities of his contemporaries: what he had discovered and demonstrated about the capacities of each medium had to be re-discovered decades later by the next generation of cartoonists."by R.C Harvey