Tuesday, May 6, 2014
PS Magazine staffers, along with fans and friends of the U.S. Army’s internationally acclaimed pioneering publication in the sequential art arena, are acknowledging with regret the death on April 26 of Donald Keith Hubbard, who served as the fourth editor of PS for nearly nine years, from January of 1983 until November of 1991.
Jim Kidd, whom Hubbard succeeded, and I brought Don on board as a writer in July of 1954 when PS was at Aberdeen Proving Ground, in Maryland. He later became production manager. When I left in September of 1963, after serving ten year’s as the magazine’s first managing editor, Don was moved into the managing editor’s slot where he served nearly twenty years until Kidd’s retirement.
In the autumn of 1950, the year before PS Magazine was established, I took the photo below showing Kidd and Hubbard in the School of Journalism booth during Mountaineer Days at West Virginia University.
Kidd, who was a School of Journalism instructor at the time, is at left, manning a lever-operated platen-press. Hubbard, center, is coordinating the handsetting of type for individual’s names in the main headline on a “dummy” tabloid page. I was in my final semester before graduation and working as a fulltime reporter-photographer for the Morgantown Dominion-News.
Hubbard came to PS from Alderson, W.Va., where he was the owner, publisher, editor, Linotype operator, and general factotum for The Alderson Times, which he had purchased after graduating from WVU.
Hubbard was one of three PS editors who had been awarded the Bronze Star for valor during World War II. The others were Jacob Hay, who preceded Kidd, and Kidd, who was twice decorated.
Hay’s medal was for his actions as an intelligence officer. Kidd’s two citations for valor were as a platoon officer in the 69th Infantry Division in France and Germany. Hubbard was a platoon scout with the 44th Infantry Division in France and Germany, and received the Bronze Star and the Combat Infantry Badge.
Don had a higher regard, however, for the Department of the Army Decoration for exceptional Civilian Service presented to him by the Secretary of the Army in the year preceding his retirement. This highest possible civilian award cited his cumulative efforts with PS from May 1964 to November 1990.
Click on Front Cover, below, for details.
Posted by Paul E. Fitzgerald at 1:55 PM
Wednesday, January 1, 2014
Happy New Year!
With one surprising exception, the PS front covers that Will Eisner occasionally drew to mark the arrival of a New Year embraced a somewhat formulaic parade of lengthy resolution lists, old men with long beards and longer robes carrying scythes, and cherubic toddlers—with or without diapers. The arriving and departing characters usually were adorned with sashes bearing numerals.
Those in the montage shown above, left to right, appeared on PS 40 (January 1956), PS 85 (December 1959), and PS 51 (December 1956).
Eisner pitched a major changeup, however, with the “see-through” New Year’s cover(s) that he did for PS 74 (December 1958). In Chapter Four, “Frame for the Art,” in Will Eisner and PS Magazine, I describe a meeting at Raritan Arsenal in New Jersey in early autumn of 1958 at which Will first brought the concept to the table. Initially, it was laughed at and casually dismissed as being too troublesome—which only served to rile him into insisting on tackling the challenge.
Here's the resulting front of that edition…
…and here's the back cover of the same edition.
There is one major bobble in the execution of the concept. In the front cover, Connie is shown wearing her sleeves down, with the cuffs buttoned. Apparently, in the time it took for the artist to walk around to the other end of the room to execute the back cover, Connie became tired of holding the pose and rolled up her sleeves before resuming it.
There was speculation at the time, among those who were familiar with the degree of critical scrutiny that was being accorded PS art at the time, that it was just another appearance of a diversionary artistic device employed occasionally by Eisner, called “The Hairy Arm.” That’s fully explored in Chapter Seven of Will Eisner and PS Magazine, titled “The Hairy Arm.”
¶ Master Sergeant Bull Dozer Revisited
¶ Best of PS by Perspective Instructional Communications
¶ A Covey of Connies—World War II to Today
Posted by Paul E. Fitzgerald at 2:44 PM