Tuesday, June 11, 2013
Spotlight On An Artist: David Sutherland
David Sutherland is an inspirational artist to me, as I'm sure he is to many other readers of The Beano. Over his 50+ years of working in comics he has illustrated countless pages, most significantly The Bash Street Kids, which he has drawn almost every week since 1962, well over 2000 pages in total.
He started working for D.C Thomson in 1960, and his first strip was the successful Danny on A Dolphin. Danny had three series in The Beano, one from June to October 1960, the second from March to October 1962 and the last from February to December 1968. This was accompanied by Dave's other adventure strip The Great Flood Of London, which ran from 1960 - 1961.
In 1962 Leo Baxendale left Thomson to go and work with Fleetway and go on to create Odhams' new "super-beano" Wham. Baxendale's departure meant that another artist had to take over his work on the Bash Street Kids, and the honour was,of course, given to David.
He is also well known as a key artist on Dennis the Menace. He drew Dennis, along with his trusty sidekick Gnasher, from 1970 all the way up until 1998 - a whopping twenty-eight years!
Over 50 years on and David is still drawing the Bash Street Kids every week in the Beano, as well as illustrating other pages in the annuals. There's no room to go through and show every character he ever drew, but a few of David's other strips are Biffo the Bear, General Jumbo, Billy the Cat, Korky the Cat and more recently he drew Fred's Bed up until last year. The self-portrait of him at the top of this post is from the 2010 Beano annual, and the photo below is a recent one of him standing next to a model of Gromit covered in drawings of Beano characters!