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Jack Davis: Drawing American Pop Culture: A Career Retrospective Hardcover – December 12, 2011
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“Jack Davis: Drawing American Pop Culture – A Career Retrospective is a wonderful tribute to the prolific artist... An amazing lifetime of work.” (The Christian Science Monitor)
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Top Customer Reviews
'Gags and illustration' with fifty pages is the longest chapter with a range of work from past decades and nicely it includes some whole page illustrations with roughs on the facing page. The Time and TV Guide chapter unfortunately only has eighteen Time covers out of the many he painted although eleven of these are large reproductions without the logo or red border. TV Guide also has eighteen covers but only one large blow-up of the cover painting.
The editorial, especially the production, really should have been better though. The major fault for me was a complete lack of any captions under or near the illustrations. No dates or a bit of background information to explain anything. The Art of Jack Davis by Hank Harrison would have identified and dated most of the art. Amazingly there is some information in the last two pages of the book where it's called End Notes, thirty-three sort of caption-like material appears but it only refers to a small number of illustrations throughout the book. Why the publisher's thought the readers should flip backwards and forwards to find out about a particular image is beyond me.Read more ›
This is one of the ugliest books I've ever added to my collection. The choice of orange, brown, red and green for the color scheme of the cover and the topic division pages is unfortunate and unappealing. The buff color matte paper stock works against a clean presentation of Davis' work.
Poor choices were made in the size of many of the pieces. Examples of his "Beauregard" comic strip are reproduced smaller than most current newspaper comics! 4" x 1.25"!
Some of the pen and ink line pieces look as if they were reproduced from bad xeroxes and then enlarged to look even worse.
His TV Guide and TIME covers, what could have been the best sections of this book, also suffers poor size choices. Cramming 9 covers onto one page reduces beautiful caricature work down to an exercise in teasing the reader. And then you find simple single figure drawings enlarged to full bleed, full page size or a simple circus drawing, while superb in itself, as a double page spread.
I ordered this book more than 6 months ago when word first appeared of it. Even now the "Look Inside" pages only hint at the ugliness of this volume.
At about 200 pages this book is also far too brief for an artist whose work has encompassed more than 50 years!
Jack Davis' work is still in need of a massive, well designed, beautiful career retrospective book.
Jack Davis is my favourite Mad Magazine artist, and easily one of my favourite artists ever, so I am able to be both critical and appreciative of efforts to put a book together on him, and books on Jack are very few, and none are in print.
I cannot understand the complete harsh negativity of the reviews here, and I am a fairly critical person myself.
I CAN understand some of the disappointments, but cannot see why they do not talk about the many fantastic things in this book.
Here are the reasons I defend and love! this book.
There are a LOT of fantastic reproductions of JD's work in this book, and they are large scale.
I agree with previous reviews that there are a few pages of JD's art and strips that are printed so small that I can't see why they bothered to print those pages at all,
and a few poor decisions in page layout that way are here-and-there in the book, such as a few film poster artworks that should have been given full pages which instead are printed two or four to a page....
But these are quibbles.
There is easily enough great art beautifully reproduced here to make you happy. At least, I'm very happy to hold this stuff in my hands.
It is a GENERAL retrospective, not a complete retrospective or a complete book on Davis's work in any regard.
The book would have taken a huge amount of effort to put together. It is not always possible to find original art to reproduce from. The quality is pretty damn good on some of these reproductions.
I do wish many of the prints were printed larger [though there are plenty of great big ones in it!Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I think all of the complaints in some of the reviews here are completely nit-picky. This is an amazing collection, the paper is more than fine. Read morePublished 18 days ago by Phillip-PDX
Who can beat Jack Davis for super realistic cartooning? Nicely done book presented in different chapters, for instance record covers. Read morePublished 12 months ago by Wawright61
Great research! Great text! Great rare older work from Davis's humble beginnings! But more importantly--just a phenomenal collection of his amazing art! Read morePublished on February 25, 2013 by Castor Hoyle
A fantastic book. If you are any kind of cartoonist or caracaturist, you HAVE to get this book, The man is amazing.Published on February 9, 2013 by Steve B. Hyde
If you like Jack Davis you will love this book. My favorite part is the early history complete with black & white sketches.Published on February 3, 2013 by G. Ulrici
Yes, an even better Jack Davis book. I enjoy the history of his work and some very familiar caricatures. I wish I had half of his talents.Published on January 24, 2013 by Rick A. Lasse
Jack is a genius but he deserves way better than this lazy mess. Illustrations that ought to be double splash pages are gang shot, nine to a page, and side bar toss-offs are made... Read morePublished on January 10, 2013 by J. Abel
This is a long overdue tribute to an artist that is probably responsible for a lot of us getting into the world of “commercial art. Read morePublished on January 1, 2013 by Scott Feaster