Monthly Archives: May 2011

Chuck Jones Image of the Day: Mowgli’s Brothers

During his tenure as vice-president in charge of children's programming at ABC television, Jones produced and directed three half-hour television specials based on stories from Rudyard Kipling's "The Jungle Book". In 1973, the story of a young boy raised by wolves in the jungle, premiered to immediate acclaim.  Narrated by Roddy McDowall, Mowgli learns about the love, justice and the jungle code of loyalty.  

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Early storyboard by Jones with a nascent Mowgli in the upper right corner.

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Pre-production model sketch of Mowgli by Chuck Jones.  You can begin to see how Jones is determining the character and personality of Mowgli through his use of the drawn line.

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Production layout drawing by Chuck Jones.  Providing hundreds of layout drawings for each of the films he directed, Jones here has clearly defined the character of Mowgli and establishes the model from which the animator's created the mood and movement of each scene.  

 

Chuck Jones Image of the Day: Going! Going! Gosh!

What better way to start your Memorial Day weekend than enjoying 6 minutes and 1 second of Chuck Jones's inspired animation, but first let's take a look at 3 of his layout drawings for his 1952 Road Runner and Wile E. Coyote cartoon, "Going! Going! Gosh!"

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Wile E. Coyote (Carnivorous Vulgaris) attempts to catch the Road Runner (Accelerati Incredibus) nine different ways in this cartoon.

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Even his backside is expressive which puts to rest the canard that the 'eyes have it.'

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There is nothing sadder than poor Wile E. hoisted on his own petard.  

P.S. There's just a little bit of Italian at the beginning of the film…

Chuck Jones Image of the Day: The Dot and the Line

There really aren't enough superlatives to adequately describe the beauty of this short film.  From its perfect screenplay to its totes awesome animation and all of the ingredients in-between (layouts, voice over, sound effects, color, pacing) Chuck Jones's 1966 Oscar-winning "The Dot and the Line" will always be a perfect work of art.  

Robert Storr, Dean of the Yale School of Art has said, “Great art is essentially work that has proven inexhaustible in terms of value it gives to those who pay attention to it.  It says ‘I am in the present tense despite the fact that I was made five or fifty years ago.’”

We had stumbled upon this advertisement that MGM had placed in Variety when "The Dot and the Line" was nominated for an Oscar on our way to something else, but it stopped us long enough to share it with you and to share the animated film as well.  Enjoy!

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Chuck Jones Big Draw = Big Hit!

Yesterday, the inaugural Chuck Jones Big Draw got off with a big bang as over 200 children and adults filled the Irvine Marriott's Tuscany Ballroom for a day of magical thinking, drawing, painting, building, creating, and inspiring!  Held from 10 AM to 2:30 PM, the Chuck Jones Big Draw was the perfect way for a family to spend a Sunday together.  Not only did the young children immediately immerse themselves in their artistic endeavors, but their parents and their older siblings (teenagers!) did too.  There was so much concentration going you could here a brush stroke the canvas.

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Craig Kausen (left), grandson of Chuck Jones and the chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity was on hand to extend his "bravo!" and "well done!" to these creative geniuses.  

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Friend of the Center and muralist (and actor), James C. Mulligan contributed his amazing talents, creating a marvelous portrait of two of Chuck Jones's iconic cartoon characters, Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner.  Not only did he develop the layout (a triptych–three separate panels), but he also guided our young guests as they helped him paint the image (below).

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Even the youngest among us had fun at the iPad station.  This two year-old was drawing & painting all sorts of wonderful images (trees were his favorite).  His father told me that he would correct their use of the computer, he was that savvy.  Youth today!

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Artist Bob Elias (below) spent the day demonstrating his technique on two new canvases featuring cartoon characters brought to life by the inimitable Chuck Jones.  P.S.  Bob's been surfing all of his life and if you look closely you'll see a little surf culture in his use of paint and how he applies it to the canvas.  

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One of the highlights of the Chuck Jones Big Draw was the performance painting that Trevor Carlton and Steven Reis created to music in 20 minutes!  Trevor (pictured below left) is one of the fine artists working with a variety of studios and Steven is a storyboard artist on "The Simpsons".  

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You couldn't have walked into the room without noticing that the energy level was vibrating with positive, encouraging inspiration.  It was a truly creative day.  Before their performance, Steven spent an hour or so with anyone who was interested, guiding and encouraging and drawing and mentoring.

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But of all the happy faces I saw yesterday, this young lady's sums up the day best:

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All photos courtesy Stephen Russo.

Shocking Exposé: Identity of Red Dot Auction Artists Revealed!

Okay, so maybe that headline is a little over-dramatic, but the truth is we are thrilled to reveal who painted what for the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity's spring fund-raiser, The Red Dot Auction.  The results are in and we're happy to report that the fund-raiser was a smashing success, in no small part due to the contribution of original art from these amazing artists.  A round of applause, please!

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What’s up, cartoon conductor? | CharlotteObserver.com

"Bugs Bunny at the Symphony" opens this week in Charlotte, North Carolina.  Creator, conductor and all-around great guy, George Daugherty, shares some of his thoughts on conducting the original music for some of the most memorable cartoons in history in this interview published in the Charlotte Observer today.

What's up, cartoon conductor? | CharlotteObserver.com & The Charlotte Observer Newspaper.

Chuck Jones’s Favorite Pencil Is Back!

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A few of the Blackwing 602 pencils used by Chuck Jones.

Did you even know it was gone?  Maybe, maybe not, but the truth of the matter is that not only was the Blackwing 602 Jones's favorite pencil but it was also the favored writing tool of author John Steinbeck and musical theater genius, Stephen Sondheim.  Anyway, there's a wonderfully informative article about the fortunes (and misfortunes) of this very popular pencil in the current CNNMoney online news source.  

The brouhaha over Blackwing pencils – May. 19, 2011.

Here's a photo of Chuck Jones's hands with a Blackwing 602.

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Chuck Jones Quote for the Day: Marvelous Confidence

"I have come to know Bugs so well that I no longer have to think about what he is doing in any situation. I let the part of me that is Bugs come to the surface, knowing, with regret, that I can never match his marvelous confidence."

–Chuck Jones, page 26, Stoke of Genius, A Collection of Paintings and Musings on Life, Love and Art

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Notes on the Red Dot Auction

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This past Saturday, the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity hosted its spring fundraiser, The Red Dot Auction.  Over 125 guests filled the Center's space in Orange and engaged in, what can only be described as, conversation.  There was talk, of course, about the artwork donated by 45 brilliant, caring, and creative artists, from a kindergartener on up to an Academy Award-winning animation director and beyond.  

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After

The place was a hive of activity as our guest jostled for position along the wall of the silent auction artwork.  Guests were greeted by the accordion stylings of Eric Stefani (Gwen's brother, you know,) and his companion, Specially (yes, that's the greyhound's name) and were ushered into the event on a cloud of camaraderie.

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Of course, there were liquid libations (thank you Frank, Cassandra & Joe,) and an amazing array of hors d'oeuvres from Chef Ray and his crew (the sweetest people you'd ever hope to meet, I kid you not.)  All of which kept our guests content throughout the evening.  

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Our staff and volunteers, many of whom were decked out in shades of the color of the evening (that would be RED, in case you hadn't been paying attention,) such as Pam Marsden, Program Director for the Center, far left; next to Pam is Tracy Tanner, the President of the Chuck Jones Council for Creativity, who are the volunteers for the Center, her neighbors and dear friends (and now ours too!), Karen Ketterer (center) and Beth Bacchi (far right,) and last, but certainly not least, the dynamic and creative Linda Krall, a volunteer for the Center (second from right.)

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Marian Jones, left, with animation director Chris Bailey, center, contributed wonderful works of art for the auction (BTW, EVERY single work of art in the auction went home with a collector!) The beautiful and talented Dina Andre (right, she was, for many years, Chuck Jones's personal assistant) also made the scene.

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Linda Jones Clough, seen here flanked by her two handsome sons, Todd on the left and Craig (the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the CJCC,) pause for a moment during the night's festivities to smile for the birdie.  Linda also was a contributing artist to the silent auction (did I mention that EVERY single artwork donated for the silent auction sold?  I did?  Well, pardon me for repeating myself, but I can't help it!)

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No fundraiser is complete without a live auction.  There were six fabulous packages and the bidding was fierce for every one of them.  But, tell me, who wouldn't want a behind-the-scenes tour of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences?  Or the Nokia Theater at L.A. Live (tech geeks, this one was for you!)?  A 90 minute Chuck Jones Film Festival?  The devil you say!  What about living the life of a renaissance prince and commissioning your very own Chuck Jones limited edition?  Four people thought it was such a great idea that ALL of them will be.  Woo Hoo!

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Did I mention that without the tireless efforts of Executive Director Cheryl Posner (seen here with collectors Leigh and John Yetsko–Leigh also is a volunteer on the Council, but I digress,) whose every waking moment for the past several weeks has been focused not only on all of the other parts of the Center's many programs, exhibitions and such, but she was also making sure that every little detail of the Red Dot Auction was perfect.  I think Chuck Jones said it best, "All great endeavors are 90% hard work and 10% love and only the love should show."  That's our Cheryl!  

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Throughout the evening, guests were encouraged to finger paint and leave a their 'mark' on a special canvas displayed just for this occasion.  Master muralist and amazing actor, James C. Mulligan contributed the center portrait of Chuck Jones.  

It is Chuck Jones to whom we owe a debt of gratitude.  His work has impacted so many lives, and in a variety of ways too numerous to list here, that a mere 'thank you' hardly seems sufficient.  The best way we can repay his creativity and artistic generosity is through the programs, exhibitions and events of the Center; they extend his genius for generations to come.  

Our heartfelt thanks to those who found it in their hearts (and their wallets) to donate to the important work of fostering creativity in people of all ages that is the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity's mission.  Thank you!   

Photos courtesy Stephen Russo

Let the Bidding Begin! The Red Dot Auction Silent Auction Artwork

Seeing red because you can't make it to the Red Dot Auction on May 14?  Yes, you can place an absentee bid.

Guidelines for absentee bidding on art featured in the silent auction: 

1.  The Chuck Jones Center is accepting absentee bids by e-mail only to Pam@ChuckJonesCenter.org.  No telephone calls, please.

2.  We must receive your e-mail bid by 6:00 p.m. PST on Friday, May 13.  We will not honor late bids, telephone bids, or bids sent to any other e-mail address.

3.  Make your very best bid, as the high bid from the absentee bidding will appear on the silent auction bid sheet posted by the art on Saturday night.

4.  In your bid e-mail, please include:
     a.  Your first and last name
     b.  Your e-mail address
     c.  Your telephone number
     d.  Your billing address
     e.  The number(s) of the piece(s) on which you are bidding
     f.  The maximum amount you are bidding for each piece
     g.  We reserve the right to request a credit card number for preauthorization

5.  We will notify winning absentee bidders early next week, and will request prompt payment via the Chuck Jones Center's PayPal account.  If the winning absentee bidder does not pay within 48 hours, we reserve the right to offer the piece to the next highest bidder.  
Bidding begins at $100.00 and goes up in $50.00 increments.  Let the bidding begin!

Participating artists include:  Andrea AlvinKelly Asbury, Chris Bailey, Jess Black, Caitlyn bone, John Canemaker, Benni CinkleLinda Jones CloughJeff DeGrandisSunny DolbergAmy Dyson, Bob Elias, Eric GoldbergShakiba Hashemi, John Howitt, Aaron Jackson, Andrew Jones, Marian Jones, Samantha Kausen, Mike KupkaNina Kuriloff, Christina Lancaster, Ria Lepage, Tennessee Loveless, Theresa Marchand, Marcel Marchand, Ken Marshall, Pamala Meador, James Mulligan, Micah Murray, Jimm Nawrocki, Robert Patrick, Irene Prestinary, Brittany Rausch, Jim Salvati,Chris Scardino,  Joshua Smith, Glen Tarnowski, Inna Timokhina, Mick Victor & others…

To purchase tickets to the Red Dot Auction, click on The Red Dot Auction!

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