Saturday, June 7, 2008

Divito

This South American cartoonist was versatile and prolific. I had seen a few comic strips by him in old comics history books, but have been blown away by the variety of his work that CARTOON RETRO has displayed. There are fantastic color humor covers (for a magazine called RICO TIPO), b & w comic strips, and generously illustrated two-tone magazine gags. You have to see the RICO TIPO covers to believe them...

His figures are so rhythmic and expressive, even in a static situation. What could be more boring than drawing a bunch of people standing in line? Not boring for Divito! His sense of design is amazing, the grouping of figures allows him to emphasize their attitudes while going for the most pleasing arrangements possible. The detail of people in this line for a card game at a party is stunning and delightful.

These figures have just enough detail in their clothing to make them believable, but they don't get overly-complex. They all have the same posture and attitude, but each is a specific and different type. No repetition, really. And the use of negative space between figures is simply perfect. I recommend copying some of these characters as an exercise. Here's the entire gag, the speaker and listener are also phenomenal figures:


Though the gag on top has a slightly more dated look,
I kept it in to show how he used overlapping space to design
the bottom gag, framing it with the plant and extending
the ceiling up beyond the natural border.


Divito apparently lived fast, played hard and died young, in a sports car crash around the age of 50 (? Fact-checkers welcome, as always)


One Divitto's better "Chicas" drawings

A lot of his gags focus on curvaceous, impossibly wasp-waisted "Chicas". For my money, ironically these often seem to be the most awkward and unbalanced figures in his drawings (they're usually at least 15 heads tall, which can get awfully unwieldy on figures that curvy). Still they proved so popular that a "Chica" doll was mass-produced. Some of the simpler female characters in his comic strips are a lot more appealing to me. The curves are still beyond belief, but the height proportions have a positive effect, in my opinion.

The confines of a newspaper strip has an upside.
Wonderfully crisp artwork.

My friend artist Luis Grane showed me an original strip he has very similar to the one above. Though the sight of a few touches of white-out always give me a sense of relief, the drawing was really impeccable.

There's another Divito image (also courtesy of SHANE GLINES and his CARTOON RETRO) that I will examine another time soon...

UPDATE: blogger JULIAN was kind enough to send along this LINK to a Divito blog. If you like what you see here, you have to check it out! I hasten to add that there don't appear to be any "repeats" of the choice images from CARTOON RETRO, so check them both out if you can...
VIVA DIVITO!

9 comments:

Julián Höek said...

hey will! amazing your post about Divito!
he was an amazing artist and his cover for Rico Tipo just make me happy every time i see one! his sense of design is so incredibly funny and his color are amazing too.
here is a link in case you didn't know it. it's from one of divito's relatives, he made a blog posting divito's art. there's a lot of eye candy to see there!
do more analysis on him please!

See ya!
Julian from Argentina

Julián Höek said...

oops! sorry i didn't put the link in my last comment, here it goes:
http://willydivito.blogspot.com/

Will Finn said...

Many many thanks Julian! Thanks for sharing!

Uncle Phil said...

next time we grab lunch I'll bring a bunch of divito originals.

Oh! And I'm not sure I ever commented on your Venture post. Your drawings look like the kind taht we used to get in trouble for making. Super cool Will. Fan art from incredible talent is always the nicest.

Mike Gillett said...

Will - I really appreciate you sharing so many cartoons/cartoonists from "today" and especially "yesterday". The "student" of cartooning does a great disservice to themselves (and the industry) if they fail to educate themselves of the likes of Windsor McCay or Tex Avery or, well, whomever. American, European, Asian, whatever...

And it crosses the line of comic strip or animation or of caricature (et al, et c.). Even the "fine arts". I still love Alphonse Mucha and Maxfield Parrish's and Norman Rockwell's stuff - and can see their subtle influence (if no-one else can).

And be a student of other subjects as well. Not just art...

I'll shut up now.

Weirdo said...

These drawings are amazing. I see a lot of Milt Gross in his drawings, and maybe pieces of Virgil Partch and Henry Syverson here. These are great. I wish we could have more stuff like this in newspapers or magazines, instead of those crappy "New Yorker" like schlock we have now. Thanks for posting.

Marc Deckter said...

Great analysis! I can look at those Rico Tipo covers for hours. One of the best reasons to join cartoonretro is for the amazing Divito collection for sure.

Oscar Grillo said...

I've met Divito when I was sixteen. Terrific artist, great guy!

Cecilia said...

viva divito y vivan las curvas de las chicas latinoamericanas!!!