Tag Archives: life

A Day at the Chuck Jones Experience

Chuck Redux had the opportunity to spend this past Monday in Las Vegas working with the people that make your visit to the Chuck Jones Experience memorable.  What a great day it was, too! We spent the whold day talking about Chuck's life, art, and genius. It's always wonderful to hear how his work and life has impacted those who spend most of their waking hours talking with his fans and collectors, in other words, people just like you.

From left, a few of the men and women who make your experience at the Chuck Jones Experience at Circus Circus in Las Vegas memorable: Emi, Joseph, Mike, Eddie, and Jessica. Missing in the photo, but there in spirit are Robin, Veronica, and Paula.

If you haven't "liked" the Chuck Jones Experience on Facebook, please do! Be on the lookout for special offers and news about upcoming art classes and other special events that will happen only in Vegas, baby. (I know, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, but I just can't keep my mouth shut about how wonderful everyone is at the Chuck Jones Experience. You'll just have to experience it for yourself!)

Remembering Chuck Jones

Chuck Jones passed away on February 22, 2002.  It doesn't seem possible that a decade has passed since then, for his spirit truly does live on, not only in each of you, but also in the hearts and minds of his three grandchildren, Valerie, Craig, and Todd.    

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Pictured from left: Craig Kausen, Linda Jones Clough, Valerie, and Todd Kausen at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences with Chuck Jones's Oscar® for his 1965 short animated film, "The Dot and the Line". 



From Valerie: People love Chuck Jones. In the decade that has passed since Chuck’s death, I have found myself getting to know (and love) him even more deeply. I have the great honor of working with the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity and witnessing innumerable people being inspired by Chuck’s work, his words, his philosophy, the memories of his kindness and humor.

Valerie Chuck copyright

I had the great pleasure of growing up with Chuck, being able to work with him closely for many years, to represent him in many situations over the years and be his only granddaughter. 

It would seem that when someone leaves this world that the memory might fade, become less important over time, but Chuck’s influence is growing stronger. The importance of a heartfelt, humor-filled life is now more clear than ever. I am more inspired, connected and dedicated to a creative life and to the pursuit of my own soul’s contribution to this world and I know that this is because of Chuck and what is still alive in this world that he left for us.

People love Chuck Jones. It is a love affair that never seems to end. Chuck changed lives through his work, his encouragement or just by his deep love of living. He is still changing lives, ten years after his passing. 


From Todd: Ten years seems like a long time in most situations, but for some reason, it does not feel very long when thinking back to when Chuck left us.  When I was at the new Chuck Jones Experience in Las Vegas at the Circus Circus Hotel, I was filled with a feeling of missing him. It really is a great experience whether you knew him or not.

Todd Chuck copyright

I'm so honored to be associated with him and his great legacy, albeit strictly through nepotism and certainly not through any kind of deserved place.  However, as Chuck used to say, "Even if I don't deserve it, that doesn't mean I can't enjoy it!"  So on this day, I shall reflect on him, his legacy, his impact on me personally and be very grateful for the tiniest piece of his humor, wit and genius that somehow trickled into my blood and allows me to occasionally find the humor in this wacky journey of life.  Thanks for that, Chief!


From Craig: It is quite startling for me to think that it has been 10 years since my Grandfather, Chuck, passed away.  Not only do I recall that day quite vividly, just as I’m sure everyone who has had someone important to them leave, I reflect that now a fifth of my life has been without him here to be able to visit with, ask questions, and laugh with at dinners.  The realization doesn’t quite seem to fit in the scheme of time for me.  Perhaps it is that time is much more relative these days for me, or just that my memories of him within our lives are so ingrained.  But in any case, I would describe my life as being almost completely with him and just a brief moment since without him.  I’m sure that being around his persona, his name, and the memories of him recounted by so many on a regular basis bridges the gap of him not physically being here, but my own memories are as constant and as clear as they ever were. 

Chuck Craig Bike copyright

On this day, 10 years later, still my fondest memories are the personal ones; the ones where he created a special moment when I was young(er) like jumping in the pool fully clothed when I learned to swim, or teaching me how to ride my bike, or telling me how special it was when my son was born.  No matter what the memory is for me, each of them, when it includes Chuck, makes me smile.

Image of the Day: A Crash of Cubist Rhinoceroses

Is any other animal on the planet as ripe for a cubist rendering (or parody for that matter) than a rhinoceros?  Although Chuck Jones was not one (a Cubist, per se, although his non-animation art in the late 1950s and early 1960s utilized his keen sense of the geometry of life,) he saw the possibilities when visiting a local zoo.  Forthwith, we present two sketches by Chuck Jones, (graphite on 12 field animation paper) that clearly exhibit his delightful sense of the absurdities of life on this world:

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Stroke of Genius: A Collection of Paintings & Musings on Life, Love and Art by Chuck Jones


This coffee-table art book is 'Chuck-ful' of delightful
paintings and pithy quotes from America's master of animation.  With
insightful forewords by his wife Marian and daughter Linda (accompanied by his
portraits of each) "Stroke of Genius" delivers a refreshing take on
the Mark Twain of cartoons.  With over 50 oil paintings depicting the
characters Jones created or developed with the other animators at Warner Bros.,
the book gives you the opportunity to witness his off-camera style and
sensibility.  Although the quotes were chosen for their content and then
paired with a painting, many deliver a one-two punch of appropriateness — for
instance, an oil painting depicting Daffy cavorting in a sea of gold and jewels
is accompanied by a quote "Be yourself is about the worst advice you can
give some people."  Repeated viewings of "Stroke of Genius"
do not dim the delight one receives from Jones' astute commentary and masterful
painting style.  This book is a must have for the art connoisseur, the
avid cinephile and those who remember the Warner Bros. cartoons as some of the
happiest moments of their lives. A bonus feature is the flip book design
element that travels up and down the outside edge of the pages—a truly
innovative touch that firmly grounds the book in the fine art of

Chuck Jones, September 21, 1912 — February 22, 2002

Today is eight years since my Grandfather, Chuck Jones, passed away.

It was eight years and three days ago that I went down to say goodbye to him.

He wasn't conscious, at least as far as I could tell as I sat by his bed at his home in Corona del Mar.  But I believed that at some level he was aware of me by his side.  It was just the two of us in the room and I sat quietly for a long time.

For some reason, I brought "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" by Mark Twain.  After sitting there for a while, I opened the book and just started to read.  The only part that I remember distinctly from the few pages that I read was:

"We got an old tin lantern, and a butcher-knife without any handle, and a bran-new Barlow knife worth two bits in any store, and a lot of tallow candles, and a tin candlestick, and a gourd, and a tin cup, and a ratty old bedquilt off the bed, and a reticule with needles and pins and beeswax and buttons and thread and all such truck in it, and a hatchet and some nails, and a fishline as thick as my little finger with some monstrous hooks on it, and a roll of buckskin, and a leather dog-collar, and a horseshoe, and some vials of medicine that didn't have no label on them; and just as we was leaving I found a tolerable good curry-comb, and Jim he found a ratty old fiddle-bow, and a wooden leg.  The straps was broke off of it, but barring that, it was a good enough leg, though it was too long for me and not long enough for Jim, and we couldn't find the other one, though we hunted all around."

I laughed out loud when I got to the end of this paragraph (as I always do) at the discontinuity and yet logic of looking for a matching wooden leg.

Chuck breathed a little more sporadically and a little deeper for a few moments then, I suppose due to my outburst of laughter.

Each and every February 22nd I make a specific intention to laugh more, to live more deeply, and to be more grateful for the things I have and have had in my life, including Chuck.

Today is no different as we've told some stories, had many laughs about the absurdities of life, and thoroughly enjoyed the day; just as I know Chuck is doing as he discusses the poetic nature of the written word with Mark Twain.

I hope that each person that loved him and his work will laugh an extra laugh in Chuck's honor today.  –Craig Kausen


Chuck Jones Quote of the Day: Since Childhood

"As a child I loved to draw, as do most children, and I have made at least twenty drawings every day of my life since childhood, and I intend to draw and paint for the rest of my life-if I live that long."

–Chuck Jones, page 100, Stroke of Genius, A Collection of Paintings and Musings on Life, Love and Art

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