Captions Seeking Substance

Collection Seven in our Hall of Humor

by William C. Sturgeon


Although the industry’s own cartoonists seldom ran dry, ELEVATOR WORLD’s regulars eventually graduated to other time-consuming pursuits — sometimes moving on to the fields of commercial and fine art. Fortunately, a few lay cartoonists from outside the industry were interested in polishing their skills on the drawing board but expressed ignorance concerning the peculiarities of the vertical transportation field. ELEVATOR WORLD’s graphic artist, Jim Lee, was one who sought a change of pace but lacked a feel for the job site. The solution — the editor provided lay cartoonists with situations and cut-lines, stimulating companion graphics. ELEVATOR WORLD periodically published suggested captions, challenging readers to respond with appropriate renderings. When “Archeologist in Egypt, in sight of the Pyramids, unearths a piece of modern elevator gear” brought several renderings, readers were able to enjoy differing graphic styles. This method was “putting the cart before the horse” but, as this collection indicates, the responses were satisfactory, providing viewers the opportunity to compare the graphic responses. Jim Lee, whose cartoons were essentially capsules of fine art, eventually moved on to become Creative Director of an advertising agency.

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For more cartoons, visit our Hall of Humor!

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