Animation &Hubley &Tissa David 22 Oct 2008 08:12 am

Tissa’s Glad Gladys

-Tissa David animated a lot of the Electric Company pieces for John Hubley. Hubley would design and write the spots, and he would get some real pros to do the tracks. In the case of this film, I believe it was the jazz legend, Billy Taylor, who wrote the music and did so for a number of Hubley’s Electric Co. films.

I’d like to post John Hubley’s LO drawings and follow it up with a few of Tissa’s animation drawings. John would usually do the loosest of layout drawings – usually in the presence of the animator as part of a discussion – and then hand it off to this person he trusted. Of course, the less he trusted the animator, the more he had to do in the LO.

In the case of this spot, Tissa received the following drawing. (That’s right ONE drawing.)

(If you click any of the images, they’ll
reveal the full animation drawing.)

If you enlarge the image, you’ll notice tape marks and pin holes where Tissa attached it to her wall.

Here’s a short sequence of drawings done by Tissa. The missing mouths are on a separate level. This piece is built on reuse done artfully.

48 49

50 51

52 53

54 55

57 58


62 63


Here’s how the drawings looked when they were colored. They were colored on heavier paper. Sharpie outlines and marker coloring. The white background was all they used for the final. The animation carried the piece.


Finally, here’s a copy of the film found on YouTube:

10 Responses to “Tissa’s Glad Gladys”

  1. on 22 Oct 2008 at 9:43 am 1.Benjamin De Schrijver said …

    I always love to see Tissa’s animation drawings! So spontaneous…

    PS: I noticed #61 is repeating the url and image of #60.

  2. on 22 Oct 2008 at 9:49 am 2.Stephen Macquignon said …

    I still love to watch them. It’s nice to put a face to the animation.

  3. on 22 Oct 2008 at 9:50 am 3.Michael said …

    Thanks for the catch. #61 is now #61.

  4. on 22 Oct 2008 at 11:37 am 4.David Nethery said …

    I enjoy watching those wonderful old Electric Co. and Sesame Street short pieces.

    A lot of great animation over the years.

    I’m out of touch with children’s TV these days … do they still commission these sort of pieces for Sesame Street ?

    The print running on YouTube went very dark from the look of the original artwork you posted above. Was that intentional or is it just a bad print ?

  5. on 22 Oct 2008 at 12:36 pm 5.Michael said …

    Hi David. The print is terrible, but it’s the best I saw on YouTube. That was the easiest way to post it. The 16mm print I have has a red cast to it, but nothing like that. It’s the only reason I posted the colored drawing, so you could see the original design.

  6. on 22 Oct 2008 at 3:26 pm 6.Richard O'Connor said …

    Glad Gladys is one of my favorite films ever. And the M who came to dinner, and Sk-skeleton.

    I have Beta from a 16mm print transfer of these and a few more. I’ll aim on getting them up on YouTube within the week.

  7. on 22 Oct 2008 at 7:42 pm 7.Tim Rauch said …

    wow, i always love seeing Tissa’s work! really graceful, economical, fun… just really really GOOD. It’s an inspiration for me to see such amazingly efficient stuff. Thanks for this post and the one from yesterday, your blog is pretty much the only channel I have come across for really learning about Tissa.

  8. on 22 Oct 2008 at 7:51 pm 8.David Nethery said …

    Has CTW or PBS ever released a DVD of animated segments from Sesame Street ? (or Electric Company) .

    I would love to have a DVD full of those shorts.

    I love animated drawings.

  9. on 22 Oct 2008 at 9:12 pm 9.Tom Minton said …

    She really knows how to maximize a pose!

  10. on 10 May 2009 at 2:15 pm 10.Ian Lumsden said …

    I know it is late, Michael, but I missed this first time round. A cleaned up version of Tissa’s work was recently posted on YouTube and I wrote about it on my blog. How well Tissa captured Glady’s mood as well as the “joyous” dance. Lovely characterization, wonderful animating.

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