Preston Blair’s RED HOT Dancing

How to Animate Film Cartoons by Preston Blair (1980)
15 drawings embellished and mounted by the artist, pencil and white opaque paint on trimmed paper mounted to 20″ x 28.5″ heavyweight paper, image size: 16.5″ x 27.5″


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This is artist-author Preston Blair’s assemblage of fifteen (15) trimmed and mounted images of his drawings of Red Hot, the nightclub singer-dancer he animated in Tex Avery’s M-G-M cartoons. Mr. Blair embellished them with touches of pencil and white opaque paint for reproduction as an illustration on page 7 of his 1980 art instruction book How to Animate Film Cartoons; it was also included in the 1994 edition titled Cartoon Animation on pages 170 and 171. The accompanying text reads:

“This dancing girl action is built like stacking building blocks—one on top of another. The first drawings are rhythm-scribbles. As each is made the drawings are flipped to study how the action is progressing. When complete, and all the sketches are on the pegs, the actions may be revised, and revised, like changing dots in the pages of a flip-book. This girl’s leg did not swing high and wide at first. I made a series of scribbles over the first crude sketches that revised this action. Then, these roughs were made of what I imagined seeing in these forms.”

Preston Blair began his career in animation with Walter Lantz and Charles Mintz in the 1930s before joining the Walt Disney Studio later in that decade. He animated characters for Fantasia (notably Mickey Mouse and Hyacinth Hippo) and also worked on Pinocchio (1940) and Bambi (1942). He left Disney after the 1941 strike for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. There he joined Fred “Tex” Avery’s unit. He is famed for his animation of the sexy nightclub star Red in six of Tex Avery’s M-G-M cartoons. In the 1960s he animated at Hanna-Barbera onThe Flintstones and in subsequent years was involved in the development and production of animated films and commercials.

Mr. Blair authored a number of art and animation instruction books published by Walter T. Foster. The first, Advanced Animation, was published in 1947 and revised several times into the 1990s. His Cartoon Animation and Animation 1 remain in print today. Walter T. Foster—a well-known artist and teacher—began producing art instruction books from his home in Laguna Beach, California, in the 1930s.

This item is from the estate of Preston Blair. “Drawings with item 65” is written at the top and “Item 65” at the bottom.

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