Books &Errol Le Cain &Events &Festivals &Illustration &repeated posts 17 Jun 2013 04:52 am

Mr. Mistoffelees – repost

– I’ve posted many of Errol Le Cain‘s illustrations for his children’s books. Ever since coming across that very first paper-bound book, about Briar Rose, (meaning it was the very first I’d seen for sale) I’ve been an avid collector searching out any of the many books he created.

Le Cain was my hero for quite some time. He was a student of Dick Williams’ studio, had learned to animate there and was doing the backgrounds for Dick’s feature The Thief and the Cobbler. Dick pushed him, at one time, to do a film on his own, The Sailor and the Devil, with, of course, Dick’s harsh scrutiny.

I present here his illustrations for the first half of the book, Mr. Mistoffelees with Mungojerrie and Rumpelteazer. The latter half of the book included the Mungojerrie and Rumpelteazer part which we’ll save for another time.

This story is part of the Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats by T.S. Eliot.

That was, of course, the source material on which Webber and Nunn based their show CATS. These images are so attractive and stylish, I was quite curious to know whether Andrew Lloyd Webber had seen the books. Especially when he was about to put CATS onto the screen as an animated film.

Here are the illustrations by Le Cain:

________ (Click any image you’d like to enlarge.)

_____________Mr. Mistoffelees
___________You ought to know Mr. Mistoffelees !
___________The Original Conjuring Cat -
___________(There can be no doubt about that).
___________Please listen to me and don’t scoff All his
___________Inventions are off his own bat.



One Response to “Mr. Mistoffelees – repost”

  1. on 18 Jun 2013 at 2:35 am 1.Peter Hale said …

    Those pictures are SO beautiful…

    This was Le Cain’s last book (he illustrated nearly 50 children’s books) published in 1990, a year after his untimely death.

    I never met him, but before he joined Richard Williams he worked for Moreno Cartoons, the studio I first worked for.

    Pearl & Dean, the British cinema advertising producers, saw Errol’s 16mm cut-out animation film ‘The Mouse’s Child’ and paid for him to come to Britain and join their Animation Department in 1956. A couple of years later George Moreno did a deal with Pearl & Dean to take over their animation department, running it as his company but doing their animation work as well as his own.

    Working with Tony Cattaneo, Le Cain did designs and backgrounds for Moreno until 1965, when he followed Cattaneo to Dick Williams’ studio.

    (I joined Moreno’s in 1969, when it was a shell of its former self!)

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