Friday, August 17, 2012

Where Did You Go, Michael Mitchell?

Back in the late 1990s I stumbled upon a stack of old Maclean's magazines at a used bookstore in Toronto. They were a bargain at a dollar a piece, so I snapped them up. I was intrigued by the artwork in them... big double page spreads by illustrators I'd never heard of, including this one by Michael Mitchell.

Mitchell03

What an interesting, energetic style - I could hardly believe someone had been creating work like this in 1952.

Mitchell03.detail01

Since Maclean's is a Canadian magazine, I assumed Mitchell was a Canadian illustrator (I didn't know back then that Canadian publishers often bought second rights to U.S. illustrations). By chance one day I spotted his name in an ad for an art rep in the 1952 New York AD Annual. Mitchell was surely American - and an illustrator who kept some very prestigious company! Just look at some of the other artists James Monroe Perkins repped in the early '50s:

Perkins01

The next time I encountered a piece by Mitchell it was in a 1952 issue of a stack of vintage Woman's Day magazines I'd just acquired.

Mitchell02

Mitchell's style was enough of a departure from the literal realism so typical of '50s that again, I was impressed he was doing such avante-garde looking work (and getting published).

Mitchell02.detail01

That stack of Woman's Day mags yielded just one other piece by Michael Mitchell.

Mitchell01.detail01

By now I was really in love with his style and kept hoping I'd find more examples... but in all the hundreds of magazines from the '50s and '60s that I've collected over the last few years, I never found another piece by Mitchell - nor did I find any biographical info. For the time being, the door on this artist's story remained closed.

Mitchell01

Until today - when I decided to do a little more sleuthing around the Internet. It turns out that Michael Mitchell was better known as "E. Michael Mitchell" - and he is responsible for one of the most iconic book covers of the 20th century.

Mitchell04

While I wasn't successful in finding a detailed biography, I was able to determine that Mitchell actually did begin his career in Canada, then moved to New York, did illustration, then went into film as a production designer and spent much of his career working in animation. Eventually he became an instructor at CalArts. Mitchell passed away in September 2009. He was 89 years old. From the blogs of his students and fellow faculty, it's clear he was revered as an artist, instructor and as a person and will be greatly missed by those who knew him. I even found this short video on youtube featuring Mitchell and some of his production art:

76 comments:

  1. I had Mike Mitchell as an instructor at CalArts for two years before he passed away. He was a teacher in Character Animation program and he taught life drawing. He was a very encouraging and lovable guy - he left behind a legacy of artists that expanded their worldview while under him.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great sleuthing and a wonderful story, Leif!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I really want to know his Canadian background. I was always struck by how similar his work was to Oscar Cahén's - it's hard to tell who came first.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Jaleen; in another video interview on youtube ( just search his name) Mitchell very briefly mentions his Canadian roots and that there wasn't enough work here for him as an illustrator, so he did graphic design - then high-tailed it to New York. Unfortunately he doesn't mention specific dates. So far all I've found by him is from '52, which is odd... there must be earlier and later examples... maybe the early editions of the Toronto Art Directors Annuals contain some reference to him.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Roger Reed2:03 AM

    My father remembers Mike being at Famous Artists School in the early days, and being instrumental in doing great drawings for one of the course revisions, but I couldn't get Walt to pinpoint the time period. I have a "Meet your Instructor" bio sheet on Mitchell (ca. 1964, I'm guessing), which shows some great drawings, fleshes out a lot of what you've outlined (mags he worked for), and contradicts other parts— says he "gave up commercial art" in 1950. I found his work in Lithopinion, ca. 1970. Too bad he's gone; he would have been a wealth of information!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Great post - really like Mitchell's work - thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  7. great energetic style indeed. fun stuff. wonder what kind of man he was - extravert or just a jazzy mind? thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. EMM was my mentor for almost a decade. I have some original work of his. Let me know if you want to see them and I can send you some hi res scans. Thanks for this. Artist should know his work.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Anonymous8:28 PM

    I was able to pick Mike's brain for a couple years at CalArts in the late 90's and yes he was awesome. If legend is correct he was even one of David Hockney's drawing instructors at the Royal Academy.
    Thanks for sharing!!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wonderful discovery!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Of course... I find this all a little surreal... as my name is also Michael Mitchell,...and I draw comic books.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I was suggested this web site by way of my cousin. I'm now not positive whether this publish is written by him as nobody else recognise such distinctive about my problem. You are wonderful! Thanks!
    Arya Samaj Mandir Jaipur

    ReplyDelete
  13. Anonymous4:21 PM

    Yep, That's a video of the film "my Little World" written and directed by Mike Nguyen , a close friend of mine and a fellow Cal Art student who eventually became a character animation teacher there. I remember seeing some of Michael Mitchell original production work at July Films. Beautiful art! Thanks for the video.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Mike was a mentor of mine while I was at Cal Arts. I also have a bunch of his original drawings. Let me know if you want to see them.

    Also, Linda Dorn has a great post about her experiences with Mike: http://acmlinda.blogspot.com/2012/07/e-michael-mitchell.html

    Very nice article!

    ReplyDelete
  15. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5T1gd0A8Vy0

    ReplyDelete
  16. Very interesting blog, thank you so much for sharing this.
    Business Ethics Assignment Help

    ReplyDelete
  17. http://crackswall.com/
    Full Version Cracked Software Download

    ReplyDelete
  18. https://vikipc.com/
    Full Version Cracked Software Download

    ReplyDelete
  19. Anonymous11:03 PM

    Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular 168Vegus article! It is the little changes that produce the biggest changes. Thanks for sharing!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Famous Dave’s Listens to your reviews and feedback on your visit experience through Famous Daves Survey. Give answers to all questions on your personal experience.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Would-be medical

    Would-be medical exec from Iran barred from Canada over alleged ties to Tehran's nuclear program. Ramin Fallah was labeled a security threat because he ...

    ReplyDelete
  22. Smart Game Booster Crack Crackclick is useful software to optimize your system for running computer games. Current software offers players the opportunity to prepare for difficult graphics games with just a few clicks. In addition, the software can also serve as a game management tool, allowing you to view and manage the collection of games installed on the system in a beautiful and attractive interface. You can also use this program to stop a variety of unnecessary processings for the system while you are playing games and enjoy your favorite gaming experience with optimal quality and speed.

    ReplyDelete
  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  24. betflix ยิงปลา เราได้เปิดให้บริการให้แก่นักเดิมพันทั่วโลกที่รักในการเสี่ยงโชค เรามีเกมการเดิมพันต่างๆ รวบรวมอยู่ที่นี้ เรามีคาสิโนชั้นนำมากมาย เช่น sexy baccarat , slotcity , sa gaming , vevo casino , joker gaming , allbet asia รวมถึงการพนันกีฬาออนไลน์ ทั้ง บอล บาส มวย ม้า เทนนิส และอื่นๆอีกมากมาย

    ReplyDelete
  25. I want to always read your blogs. I love them Are you also searching for Nursing thesis writing services? we are the best solution for you. We are best known for delivering Nursing thesis writing services to students without having to break the bank

    ReplyDelete
  26. Your blogs are great.Are you also searching for Nursing Writing Help? we are the best solution for you. We are best known for delivering nursing writing services to students without having to break the bank.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Good blog.Are you also searching for Help With My Nursing Paper? we are the best solution for you. We are best known for delivering nursing writing services to students without having to break the bank.

    ReplyDelete
  28. ChessBase Full Crack Download is the ultimate chess database program that provides an extensive analysis of player chess games, exercises, training and much more. chessbase

    ReplyDelete
  29. Adobe Photoshop Lightroom Classic Crack Download: Essential software for professional photographers, it offers a full suite of digital photography tools, from powerful and easy one-click adjustments to advanced controls.adobephotoshoplightroomclassictorrent

    ReplyDelete
  30. KOOKUP Bourne PC Game is an award-winning audio editing application that helps musicians, producers, and composers create inspirational sounds.kookupbourneactivationkey

    ReplyDelete
  31. Audentity Records – Vocal Megapack 11 Crack Free Download: In the 11th edition of Vocal Megapack, our band came from all over the world and collaborated with a new kind of talented singer who recorded at Audentity Records studio.audentityrecordsvocalmegapackfreedownload

    ReplyDelete
  32. Cockos REAPER License Key Free Download is an advanced and comprehensive digital audio production software for recording, controlling and multi-track production.cockosreaperserialkey

    ReplyDelete
  33. MathType 7.14.3 Crack is a program developed by Design Science that provides mathematical notes preparation, which includes desktop and web applications.mathtypeproductkey

    ReplyDelete

  34. Thanks for sharing such great information, I highly appreciate your hard-working skills which are quite beneficial for me. youtube-by-click-crack

    ReplyDelete
  35. GetFLV Pro Crack
    is a fully integrated set of powerful utilities for downloading, managing, converting, fixing and playing FLV (Flash Video) video files. FLV Downloader – A powerful tool to download

    ReplyDelete
  36. LATEST CRACK PATCH SERIAL KEYS AND LICENSE KEYGEN DOWNLOAD

    ReplyDelete
  37. https://www.thecrackbox.com/
    Full Version Cracked Software Download

    ReplyDelete
  38. https://crackeypc.com/
    Crack Full New Version Free Download Here

    ReplyDelete
  39. https://www.thecrackbox.com/vysor-key-download-here/
    If the user wants to change the picture then it is easily done with the help of this software. The main feature of this application is to connect the device with the computer and type more words easily in a short period of time.

    ReplyDelete
  40. https://boxcracked.com/freemake-video-downloader-key-full-crack/
    Freemake Video Downloader Especially intriguing is that the option to exclude built-in with all the video Downloader. An individual could subsequently download his video clips having a very simple copy/glue.

    ReplyDelete
  41. https://rootcracks.org/z3x-samsung-tool-crack-activation-keygen-april-update/
    This gives you the best chance of being dissatisfied with an open environment. You wizard unlock your phone system. There are some benefits of the tool that will fit when you open the id and install it. It can unlock the screen system quickly.

    ReplyDelete
  42. https://licensekeysfree.com/imyfone-fixppo-crack-2021/
    Moreover, it can provide various advanced ways to cope with occurring issues. Additionally, it is an incredibly awesome and optimistic mechanical tool where the customers will not lose the data.

    ReplyDelete
  43. https://keystool.com/winzip-pro-crack/
    At the same time, the tool is useful and decrease document upload/download there. While the device used to make and Publish records, spreadsheets, PDFs, presentations, and your name, using WinZip Pro 2020,

    ReplyDelete
  44. https://cracklabel.com/imyfone-ibypasser-crack-2021/
    Therefore, this tool is best that make the option and easy to use also. Other tools that are in the cinema 4D Crack are still easier for this and make the intuitive. It is fast and makes it easy to use the program.

    ReplyDelete
  45. iiTools 4 Crack for Windows + Mac is a useful tool for anyone who has an Apple device. This app is easier and better than iTunes. Although for it to work, you’ll need iTunes installed.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Amazing article mate, an everything contemplated befuddling article. I've end up being your fan happening to investigating your befuddling article. You may tragically checkout my work. Arrangement Given under. Free Download software
    Direct Download Link

    ReplyDelete
  47. I really enjoy reading your post about this Posting. This sort of clever work and coverage! Keep up the wonderful works guys, thanks for sharing

    pokemon-go-crack

    ReplyDelete
  48. Thanks This blog is really informative. It helps me a lot really interested. Admin, you are doing a very well job.You may interested in mine UltraISO Premium Edition registration key
    https://crackeyfull.com/

    ReplyDelete
  49. New Roof or Re-roof
    Professional Measurement and Estimation of Roofing
    Free Estimation
    SRS Roofing-Your partner for the installation of a new gutter
    How you can Save Thousands of Dollars by cleaning your Eavestrough
    Buy sell search
    maintaining-your-roof
    sellgp

    ReplyDelete
  50. wondershare uniconverter crack
    Wondershare UniConverter Serial Number has a beautiful screen recorder tool. You can write everything on your computer. This means you can organize class movies, presentations, tutorials, and more. Also, the project is amazing. You can download videos from more than 10,000 pages in one click. The program allows you to create and edit DVD files.
    https://procrackerz.com/

    ReplyDelete
  51. TechTool Pro Crack
    TechTool Pro Cracked software is in complete control of your PC suite. With the new PC monitor suite, you can install additional test kits for your needs. Use a complete, medium, or feasible project that suits your needs or schedule your tests on it. The whole package scans the entire hard drive and works as follows. To save time, Intermediate Suite not only scans your Mac for other Macs but also quickly scans the state of your Mac hardware. Adjust them too, or enter your own settings to test your Mac.
    https://pcfullcrack.org/

    ReplyDelete