walldog 1: rules to live by

This is the first of several posts featuring photographs I took on my visit to the International Walldog Mural and Sign Art Museum in Pontiac, Illinois.  This is a relatively new museum and its collection is still small, but it is already full of weird little gems.  The arts of mural and sign painting and cartooning are related in a lot of obvious ways, and some subtle ones too. One of these is the obvious commercial nature of the enterprise.  Like sign painters, cartoonists want people to pay for our work.  So proofreading never goes out of style:catchmistakesAnd we can all relate to the rules on this great little poster (click for detail, and just look at those fonts!), which encourages the customers to patronize home enterprise,durham insuranceand gives them reasons to do so:durham insurance rulesThat is the best spelling of the world “spelt” I have ever seen, there in rule one, although it was probably correct at the time and saved the sign painter/typesetter three whole characters over the modern “spelled”.   Rule three is pretty easy for us cartoonists: my minicomics are 4 and a quarter by five and half, just like I told you.

But rule two is my favorite.  In fact, rule two is my new favorite thing in the whole world, and will be appearing in all my comics from now on.  Or at least all the color ones.  “Kekionga: Color guaranteed to be pretty close.”

(Just found out that the Durham poster is a pastiche, created by Tom Durham.  Read Kathy Durham’s post below to get the whole story.  It’s nice to have someone specific to thank for a clever bit of writing that sure fooled me!  Thanks, Tom.)

(more from the Walldog Museum tomorrow. Another thing that’s guaranteed to be be pretty close is the focus on the Pentax 35mm f/2.8 Macro Limited lens through which I took these images.  It, and the already-faithful K-30, are providing “better equipment than I am a photographer” right now, and doing a darn fine job of it. Guaranteed.)

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5 Responses to walldog 1: rules to live by

  1. Liz Vincent says:

    It was so great to meet you and get the chance to show you around our museum, Pam! Hopefully you will find your way back here sooner rather than later. I would love to share these posts on our museum facebook and website if that’s ok with you?

  2. Pam Bliss says:

    You may and welcome. Thank you very much for having your museum, and I do hope to return soon.

  3. Kathy Durham says:

    Hi Pam, my husband Tom Durham made this up, because it drives him nuts that the Post Office would have to “insure” an item that they are paid to deliver…without damaging!! So, he wrote this as a joke, being the funny guy that he is, and gave them out to all who want one…and most of our Walldog friends have one posted in their office! Spelt of course, is on purpose, but the whole idea of having sign insurance is hysterical, and many have been spurred we believe into actually wondering if they could get away with it! Thanks for sharing, we were the creators of the Route 66 mural…we love Pontiac and all it has to offer, especially the spirit of the people!

    • Pam Bliss says:

      Thank for posting, Kathy. Tell Tom I fell for his pastiche lock, stock and barrel, although to my credit I never touched the paper or turned to over to determine how it was printed. Regardless of its date or origin, it’s a clever piece of writing and I like it a lot. I hope he doesn’t mind me borrowing his second slogan, because I still plan to. (He gets a credit in the edited post.)

      I really admired the Rt 66 mural and am sorry I didn’t have to time, light or lens for it. Next time!

  4. Pingback: A comic visit! - International Walldog Mural & Sign Art Museum

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