Document details

Dick Huemer
Animation Pioneer Portraits
Dick Huemer

CARTOONIST PROfiles is privileged to publish the following preview of a new book by Dick Huemer, a 35-year veteran with Walt Disney Productions. He was story director for such Disney classics as FANTASIA and DUMBO and, among other things, writes the TRUE LIFE ADVENTURES daily feature. Frank Reilly, the Head of the Disney Comic Strip Department, passed this preview article along to CARTOONIST PROfiles on the occasion of his recent visit to New York, and we are indebted to him for the Huemer story.

The modest little sign on a two-storied wooden building, cater-cornered from Fordham University in the upper Bronx of New York read simply:

RAOUL BARRE.* Cartoonist

For months I had passed it almost daily, trying to get up enough nerve to mount the stairs and ask this Mr. Barre, cartoonist, for a job. Finally one fateful day, I goided up my lerns" (I still retained my Brooklyn accent) and did it.

The dark chubby man with the smiling gray eyes who looked up from his desk completely disarmed me. I found it quite easy to say, "I would like to be a cartoonist.'

In what I recognized to be some kind of a French accent, he said, "So. You would lak these jub, eh?" Later I learned that the accent was French Canadian.

That was all there was to it. In a short while I was in one of two small adjoining rooms, getting in my first licks as a cartoonist. I was put to work painting black shoes, coats and top hats on a character I knew from the comic pages as Jeff, of the firm of Mutt and Jeff. Of course I quickly learned that I was not so much a cartoonist as a practitioner in the mysterious art of animation. And mysterious it certainly was. This was in 1916 B.D. (before Disney.) Comparatively few people had ever heard of animated pictures, much less term itself ever seen any. The very ANIMATOR was not in the ordinary person's lexicon. I remember when my father somewhat dubiously told a neighbor that his son, the ex-art student, was now an Animator, that grossly uniformed individual asked in all innocence, "He's doing something with animals? Working for the S.P.C.A. - or the circus?"



Source type Magazine
Volume 3
Language en
Document type Feature
Media type text
Page count 5
Pages pp. 14-18


Id 5807
Availability Free
Inserted 2021-02-02