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Two Unknown DC Thomson Artists. 
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I wonder if anyone (particularly Kashgar) can identify either of these two artists who seem to have been working for DC Thomson during the late 1940s? (going by the signature I'm guessing that the cowboy might be by David Spink from the Meadowside Art Department, but unfortunately I'm not at all familiar with his work)


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Mon Oct 30, 2017 7:24 pm
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Are those from an actual set of cards, Phil, and if so, what is the set called? I do have books that should list it.


Mon Oct 30, 2017 9:35 pm
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As far as I know they were never actually published Phoenix. These are original pieces specifically drawn for 'Uncle David's nephew.


Mon Oct 30, 2017 10:02 pm
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Impressive though aren't they?


Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:03 pm
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Very impressive - I bet Uncle David's nephew was thrilled to receive them! Here's another contribution by longtime Thomson artist Fred Sturrock: given that it's dated 1948 I don't think it can be a drawing of Leslie 'Limp Along' Tomson, but I do wonder whether it might be another named character he was associated with...or is it just a generic footballer?


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Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:21 pm
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A really fabulous illustration from the same source featuring Big Eggo and friends by George Drysdale (though as far as I'm aware he didn't actually draw the comic ostrich during his run in Beano)!


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Last edited by philcom55 on Tue Oct 31, 2017 1:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Tue Oct 31, 2017 1:21 pm
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...And one by the future 'Four Marys' artist James 'Peem' Walker (though I don't think the antagonists in this marvellous comic scene relate to any specific Thomson series). Such wonderful, lively brushwork!


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Tue Oct 31, 2017 1:28 pm
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Hi Phil,

An interesting set of illustrations you've gotten hold of there.
You are quite right about the cowboy artist, it is Dave Spink.
The other 'unknown' artist is Archie Duncan.
You can certainly date the George Drysdale set to 1948 as well
as both Big Eggo and Cocky Jock where both drawn by him at that
time. (It's annoying me that I can't remember who the boy character
in the illustration is but I'm sure it will come to me eventually).


Tue Oct 31, 2017 4:11 pm
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That's excellent Kashgar! Here's 'Uncle David' Spink's interpretation of a non-Thomson character, but do you know if he ever drew any series for their comics or story papers? Off hand I can't remember seeing any credits for Archie Duncan either - did he mainly concentrate on painting book covers, etc?


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Tue Oct 31, 2017 4:43 pm
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Hi Phil,
Towards the end of his career Dave Spink drew strips for the girls picture papers.
He also drew a strip in the early editions of Sparky titled 'The Kidnapped Kids'.
Archie Duncan was a layout artist and tended not to do heading blocks. Despite his obvious talent he was deemed to be too slow to produce such work.


Tue Oct 31, 2017 5:37 pm
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Thanks Kashgar - you really are an invaluable fount of wisdom when it comes to all things Thomson! I don't suppose you can recall any of the girls' strips that Dave Spink drew? I can't help feeling that Thomson's art department must have been an amazing place to work in back in the day with all those wonderful artists sharing the same space: there must be so many stories about them that are now lost to history forever!


Tue Oct 31, 2017 5:59 pm
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philcom55 wrote:
Here's another contribution by longtime Thomson artist Fred Sturrock: given that it's dated 1948 I don't think it can be a drawing of Leslie 'Limp Along' Tomson, but I do wonder whether it might be another named character he was associated with...or is it just a generic footballer?
I was interested enough in this drawing, Phil, to spend an hour or so last night looking through all DCT's football serials in 1948 and, given that it might have been used later, all those in 1949 as well. There is one that sort of looks like it a bit but not enough to persuade me that it is anywhere near identical. It occurs to me though that its destination might well have been the sports section of one of the company's newspapers, or one of their Topical Times football annuals.


Tue Oct 31, 2017 6:52 pm
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philcom55 wrote:
Very impressive - I bet Uncle David's nephew was thrilled to receive them! Here's another contribution by longtime Thomson artist Fred Sturrock: given that it's dated 1948 I don't think it can be a drawing of Leslie 'Limp Along' Tomson, but I do wonder whether it might be another named character he was associated with...or is it just a generic footballer?

That footballer picture is just delightful. While I would agree that it is unlikely to be Limp Along Leslie, it puts me in mind of Wally 'Ball of Fire' Brand who is described as having red hair.

However, I am willing to put money on one character it isn't and that is Baldy Hogan! :lol:

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Tue Oct 31, 2017 7:08 pm
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colcool007 wrote:
While I would agree that it is unlikely to be Limp Along Leslie, it puts me in mind of Wally 'Ball of Fire' Brand
Well, given the 1948 date for the drawing, Col, that is on the absolutely-impossible side of unlikely as Wally wasn't introduced into the consciousness of the nation before August 1959. His first series, The Ball Of Fire, was of course clearly popular, lasting as it did for 39 instalments in The Rover, but whichever way you look at it, 1959 is just not 1948.


Tue Oct 31, 2017 8:33 pm
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Phoenix wrote:
colcool007 wrote:
While I would agree that it is unlikely to be Limp Along Leslie, it puts me in mind of Wally 'Ball of Fire' Brand
Well, given the 1948 date for the drawing, Col, that is on the absolutely-impossible side of unlikely as Wally wasn't introduced into the consciousness of the nation before August 1959. His first series, The Ball Of Fire, was of course clearly popular, lasting as it did for 39 instalments in The Rover, but whichever way you look at it, 1959 is just not 1948.

This is why I said that it puts me in mind of Wally Brand as I am aware that there is a fair disparity between 1948 and 1959. However, the mere mention of those footballers might spark a thought or two.

While I have been writing this, the football strip has been bugging me and it looks like the 1940s/1950s Alloa Athletic strip so I wonder if Fred hailed from that part of the country and used that strip intentionally.

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Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:15 pm
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