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Old inbetweeners refuse to fade away January 19, 2008

Posted by Jeff in Art, Cartoons, Zook.

Old inbetweeners refuse to fade away  ...

Watercolor by Virgil “Vip” Partch. Left to right: Sam Cobean, Tony Rivera, Bill McIntyre, Vip Partch, Reginald Massie (foreground), Dick Shaw.

This probably dates from late 1941 or 1942, after the Disney strike in which they all participated. All five would have been in their late twenties to early thirties at the time …

Along with Reg Massie and Walt Kelly (later of Pogo fame), Sam Cobean was in charge of publicity for the 1941 Disney strike. He was a frequent cartoon contributor to The New Yorker, and published several books. He was killed in a car crash in 1951.

Tony Rivera was Grim Natwick’s assistant on Snow White. He worked for UPA, John Sutherland and DePatie-Freleng. He was one of the original Flintstones layout artists, and continued working for Hanna-Barbera until shortly before his death in 1986.

Bill McIntyre was in and out of the animation business for many years; at one time he also ran a bookstore in Laguna Beach.

Virgil “Vip” Partch went on to fame and fortune as a comic artist, contributing to Collier’s, True, The Saturday Evening Post, and the newspaper panel comic Big George. Like Cobean, he died in a car crash, in 1984.

During WWII, Reg Massie was in charge of special effects at the Army Signal Corps Photographic Center in Astoria, L.I. In the late 1940s he worked for George Pal, designing several of the Puppettoons such as “John Henry and the Inky-Poo” and “Rome-Owww and Julie-Cat”. He went on to be an art director for such magazines as Stage, The Reporter and Gourmet; he died in 1989.

A close friend of Vip Partch with whom he shared a love of boating, Dick Shaw is the only one of this group who returned to Disney, as a storyman on Make Mine Music and Donald Duck shorts. Later he went to UPA where he wrote dozens of Magoo shorts.

None of them ever exactly faded away, but they never went back to inbetweening, either.

Vip got the pipe right, but unlike me, my Dad never lost any of his hair …

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1. Larry Rippee - September 13, 2006

“Old inbetweeners refuse to fade” away is a great drawing and a great piece of comic art history. I’ve been assisting Richard Shaw (son of cartoonist Dick Shaw) organizing his fathers drawings, papers, correspondence, etc. A very crazy, creative crew. Richard has many sketches similiar to the “OldIn betweeners” featuring his father, Vip, Ketcham, Cobean, Kinney,et al.

I’ve been researching the Dick Shaw/Vip glory days at Disney and beyond. I notice you state Shaw worked for Disney before the infamous strike. I’d like to know more about that. I haven’t found evidence of Dick Shaw at Disney before he began writing the Mickey Mouse comic strip for Floyd Gottfredson in 1942 (by 1944 he was doing storyboards). Any info?

Thanks for the great image,

Larry Rippee

2. Jeff - September 14, 2006

Of all the people in this drawing, I confess I know the least about Dick Shaw.

I work for the Animation Guild, the successor union to the Screen Cartoonists Guild that organized Disney. In his 1952 membership application to our union, Dick said he had previously worked for Disney and that he had started in the biz in 1941. Considering the companions he was keeping in the Partch drawing, I guess I just assumed Dick was part of the crowd that walked out, but you’re right that I don’t have proof of that.

I never met Dick or Vip; my dad and I had been expecting to see Vip at a party at Chuck Couch’s that was cancelled after the accident. And of course I’m too young to have known Sam Cobean (did you know there’s a website with a great collection of his work at http://www.samcobean.com?) Tony Rivera and Bill McIntyre remained close to my dad, although I lost contact with McIntyre after Dad died in 1989.

I’m interested in knowing about Dick’s later career after he left UPA, which is as far as our records go. When did he pass away?

3. Larry Rippee - September 15, 2006

Dick Shaw died August 1976 from either a stroke or heart attack.

His career after his Dick Tracy work at UPA gets a liitle murky. He attempted to launch a couple of different syndicated cartoon panels which were short lived. He freelanced quite a bit doing advertising work and such. Starting around 1963, he was the humor editor for the magazine Orange County Illustrated. Thanks to Shaw the magazine had first rate cartoonists (Shaw’s buddies) such as Vip, Phil and Frank Interlandi, John Dempsey and Matt Murphy. But his economic mainstay throughout much of his career was his relationship with the Lockheed Corporation. Shaw had a working agreement that he give Lockheed three days a week. Lockheed published at least 2000 cartoons and illustrations by Dick Shaw (plus three or four cartoon collections).

Other than that he spent a lot of time with his infamous boat the Michigan.

4. Jeff - September 24, 2006

Thanks for the information; let me know if there’s anything else the Guild can do to help with your research …

5. larry Rippee - October 28, 2006

You may indeed have valuable information on Dick Shaw. You site Shaw’s application with the Animation Guide back in 1952.It would be good to know more about his early days in animation (The earliest association I’ve come up with regarding Disney is 1942 and a lot of info on his UPA days is murky). Do you have any records available on Shaw that Richard Shaw and I might be able to see? thanks again,
Larry Rippee

6. Craig L Holler - March 4, 2008

I have just uncovered some early sketches by Dick Shaw for Karl Orts airplane parts catalog, York, Pa..I have over 15 with a hand written message to Mr Ort,,”I’m sorry as to the delay in sending these roughs, have been busy in NY..More this week, excuse the hurried appearance of this group, been doing them enroute,, sincerely Dick Shaw” some roughs have his name and 170 E Superior, Chicago on the back..Im trying to get some info on these..Can anyone help? Reading this I presume these were done in the ’40’s, apparently free lance

7. Bob - May 24, 2008

I have a copy of “FLYBY”, “A PARADE OF CHUCKLES FROM LOCKHEED”(no date).This is an accumulation of “the best from five years of ‘Lockheed Reports'” Dick Shaw cartoons., sent to “Lockheed’s military friends”. Is there any interest in this volume?

George Soublis - May 8, 2010

I am interested in this copy. How much are you selling it for?

8. Nancy - August 19, 2008

VIP was the cartoonist for my all-time favorite children’s book, The Christmas Cookie Sprinkle Snitcher. I really enjoyed seeing this watercolor by him … the first I’ve seen (usually just the b/w cartoons appear on the internet). I believe VIP has children, at least I know of a son (Peter). Do you know if he does anything to memorialize his famous Father? One of my DVD treasures is an appearance by Virgil Partch on the old Groucho Marx Show.

anna - January 31, 2013

I’m curious about the DVD you have from the Groucho Marx Show – could you share that information please

9. Casey Shaw Shanley - June 20, 2009

I’m Dick Shaw’s daughter Casey [Catherine] Shaw Shanley. It is great to see this drawing as Virgil Partch was one of the most important people in my life. Truely one of the kindest men alive!
I remember many funny stories about the strke at Disney, so I belive my Dad was there, and I think Hank Kecham was living with my parents at the time. I was born in 1956 so they were old stories when I heard them, but no one could tell stories better than those guys! I will ask my brother Richard, who has alot more information and was born when our father was working for Disney. I remember my mother saying how grateful she was that the Union gave milk to mothers with babies during the strike.

Tom Smith - June 7, 2010

Casey, My name is Tom Smith, WE used to own the Balboa Market on the peninsula! You father was good friends with My dad. He once created a book with my brothers and I as characters called the four Box Boys, any chance there are still copies of that book floating around? I would love to aquire a copy if available


10. jujubazaar - June 25, 2009

Recently, at an estate sale I found an early compilation of lockheed cartoons – ‘way outer space with Dick Shaw – seems very rare as I can’t find any for sale anywhere online. If anyone would be interested in this please let me know. links for email and the listing are included.

11. Art and Judy Roberts - November 16, 2010

Reg Massie was a friend of our father and uncle who lived in the S.F. Bay Area. A large cut out of an elf done in pastel calk hung on the wall of the bedroom…we did not know much about it other than it was done by Reg Massie, an early illustrator for Disney. After their death we found a partner piece in the basement. Neither are signed, but the family history says that they were done by Reg Massie. I am trying to research them.

12. Kathy Gaulden - February 11, 2013

I have a copy of “Flyby..a Parade of Chuckles from Lockheed” that I would be interested in selling.

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