Dec 24, 2006

A Merry Moore Christmas

Fred Moore's christmas card (from himself and his second wife), circa 1950 or so--a very lovely gift to the author from James T. Walker, owner of the vast majority of the fabulous Fred Moore artwork that I've been privileged to share with you this year. Thank you, Tim, and I hope to see you soon!

2006 has been a year of terrific joy and personal and professional satisfaction for your diarist here at the Blackwing blog. It's also been on the personal side the single most challenging and difficult one I've ever had. The last couple of months have been fraught with the kind of drama no one wants to deal with but all of us do--just not usually so soon. As Groucho Marx once said(quoting faux-Eugene O'Neill), "The gods look down and laugh"--and roll the dice. Everyone takes a turn.

In that I know I'm not alone, and the kindness of my friends, colleagues and yes, to offer another swipe (from Tennesse Williams) 'the kindness of strangers', too--has meant a tremendous amount to me. Pardon my being so elliptical, but suffice to say that Christmas and the entire holiday season do nothing if not drive home to the average person all that's really important; the too-swift passing of another year; the beauty of the smallest things, and also wistful thoughts of the past.

Many of the posts here have dealt with the past in the form of various stories about animation. I don't believe in wallowing in an invented or idealized Golden Age, but I do think that far too much of recent history("recent" meaning the last hundred years)is unjustly forgotten, and that with each generation's disappearance from the world we too often lose the lessons that took our predecessors a lifetime to learn--the hard way. We do it all over again, and when we actually stop and read about them, or look at their work, we find that very little has changed. The "bad" things were there too, just as now, in droves: petty politics, career jealousies, unfairness, unrewarded toil, family dramas. But there too were all the same wonderful things--sudden spurts of artistic brilliance and satisfaction, laughs with irrepressible coworkers, joy at the births and weddings and promotions of deserving friends, discoveries of new talents that take the art of drawing, painting or animation further than you thought it could go. We share all those ills and triumphs not only with our bunch of fellow salmon swimming upstream but with the many schools that have gone before us, and stand in spirit shoulder to shoulder with us now.

To them, and to you, I wish you all the very merriest and most peaceful of holidays!

a very young Carole Lombard-not animation-related, but definitely another of my muses


David said...

Merry Christmas, Jenny !

Both your blogs have been a great source of delight and inspiration to me over the past year.

I hope that the coming new year is filled with happiness and success for you , sans "drama" or grief.

-David N

Jenny Lerew said...

Thanks David! I'm humbled and tickled that so many talented artists and afficionados actually come here and read these things! Of course it's 99.9% due to Freddie Moore and the other fantastic people I've posted about, but still! ; )
I'll happily bask in reflected glory!
And I wish all the same good things for you & yours in the new year!