Golden Books and comic strips


When I mentioned to Mr. Hess that a friend had just made me aware of his work for Golden Books he enthusiastically proclaimed he had done thirteen storybooks for the publisher, "and one on math."

Oh, you also did a math textbook?

"No, it was a sort of 'Fun with Math' book," he explained.

I wondered if he had ever considered doing a newpaper comic strip.

"Yes, I tried one, but they weren't interested. I did the samples but it didn't sell. It was about a witch and her... frogs and things."

"But a few years later a strip came out by a fellow... Myers? about a witch and so on and for the first while it looked an awful lot like mine. I think they might have suggested it to him up at the syndicate."

Did they keep the samples up there, I ask.

"No, I got them back."

So this strip was never published anywhere?

"No. But I think they might have thought it was a pretty good idea. But by then I was on to other things. Greeting cards and things."

I tell Hess that this is how I first located him - through a greeting card company called Graphics3.

"Where are they located?" he asks.

In Florida, I reply.

"That was mine. That was my company."

At this point I was remiss in not asking Mr. Hess for more details about that stage of his career and later, after emailing Bob Herlin at Graphic3 with a request for more info, I realized how close it was to American Thanksgiving, but Mr. Herlin was kind enough to fire off this quick note before leaving for the holidays:

Hi Leif:

We are in the midst of Christmas selling season - and
departing for the Turkey gig today.
Lowell is a peach - a man of many talents well beyond his illustration
career.

Regards,
Bob Herlin

I hope to get in touch at a later date with Mr. Hess to flesh out some of the details and will post them here for Todays's Inspiration readers.

*A special note of thanks: To Drazen Kozjan of Hypnotik Eye for the Aladdin scans - thanx Draz!

If you would like to see more of Lowell Hess' art for Golden Books head on over to Eric Sturdevant's Flickr album - its part of the good work being done by the Retro Kid gang - with thanks to Eric!

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