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Mini Me Movie Maven

Me in fifth gradeI always enjoy it when people share the childhood art projects, and never thought that I would also have that opportunity until my mother came by recently with a folder stuffed with old school photos and such. Also tucked away in the folder were assignments I did in the fourth and sixth grades. Coincidentally, both have an “old movie” theme. This doesn’t surprise me, since old cartoons and movies like The Wizard of Oz fueled my fascination with just about anything and everything produced before my birth date. Plus, I was always an artistic kid who wanted nothing more than to sit around and draw all day (the fact that I was constantly, constantly picked last for all sports team activities attested to that). So, what better way to convey my fascination with old crap than through old art?

Our first project is a homemade mask made in fourth grade art class, lovingly rendered in tempera and glitter. For some reason, I had a vague recollection of this one being of Charlie Chaplin. Actually, it was Groucho Marx. I probably never saw a Marx Brothers movie at this point, but even in the ’70s Groucho was so ingrained in pop culture that I knew enough of his distinctive look to want to make a mask of him. It’s cute:

Groucho Marx Mask

Our second project is a written report I did on the history of the movies, dated January 1981. This had both a research and oral component (for which I got a B+ and an A, respectively). Of course, the most important part for me was drawing up a snazzy and complex cover design. It had to have an Art Deco font, right? Too bad I didn’t know enough about letter spacing not to mess up the “y” in “History”:

Movies History - Front

The bottom half of the report is various caricatures of Hollywood movie stars. Although I can’t identify most of them for the life of me, I do recognize a few. See if you can find Bob Hope, Greta Garbo, the Lone Ranger, Donald Duck, Barbra Steisand, Fay Wray in King Kong’s hand, Elvis Presley, Alfred Hitchcock, Shirley Temple, Charlie Chaplin, R2-D2, Mickey Mouse, W.C. Fields, Louis Armstrong, Lassie, Jimmy Durante, Godzilla, Snow White and Grumpy, and the Beatles amongst the crowd (I think a snotty “friend” of mine drew the extra long tongue coming out of Shirley Temple’s mouth!).

Movies History - Detail

4 Thoughts on “Mini Me Movie Maven

  1. Jeff on June 10, 2009 at 7:47 am said:

    Love your report cover. Did you get the caricature idea from the endpapers of “Life Goes to the Movies,” a book I was obsessed with as a child (as well as the movie version that ran on TV quite a bit around the Bicentennial? There’s a film that’ll never see the light of day again; a rights nightmare.

  2. Thanks, Jeff! I probably used that Life magazine book for research, since there wasn’t a lot to go by back then.

  3. Wow! Really fun stuff – it reminds me of the work Walt did as a kid when he had an assignment to draw triplets of things.
    I really enjoy your blog Matt, and look forward to every post. Thanks for the entertainment.

  4. Well – thanks for the encouragement, Bob!

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