pen & ink

Drawing was innate for Ted. He doodled on notepads all the way through high school and college. During the hard-pressed early 1930s, Ted supported himself by selling cartoons to LifeCollege HumorVanity Fair, and Ballyhoo. In the early 1940s, the daily newspaper PM began publishing his political cartoons. By the time he was illustrating his children’s books, his deft final-line drawings seemed effortless.

One of the distinguishing elements of many of those early drawings was the use of saturated black India ink for the background, visually outlining and popping the imagery forward. This technique naturally carried over into Ted’s more sophisticated paintings. Like Norman Rockwell, Ted Geisel created every rough sketch, preliminary drawing, final line drawing, and finished work for each page of every project he illustrated.