Friday 30 July 2010

Frank Bellamy's book illustrations: Not too narrow ... not too deep

 1965 version by Frank Bellamy

I have just finished reading an interesting paperback from the 1960s as a result of learning a while ago that Bellamy did an illustration for it. The book in question is "Not too narrow...not too deep", the first novel by Richard Sale (born 1911 died 1993).

It was in the same year in that James M. Cain wrote one of my favourite films "Double Indemnity", Richard Sale wrote "Not too narrow...not too deep". This book of only 158 pages takes us from the steamy jungle prison camp with 10 (or is that 11?) inmates as they escape and buy a small boat to take to Trinidad, then to Cuba and into the United States. The daily drudge of scorching heat, water rationing and the endless swell of the ocean, is only interrupted storms at night and the loss of some of the escapees and by the musings of our narrator (a doctor) as he observes the interactions between all the occupants of the boat. The real story is who is this eleventh man? Who is Jean Cambreau? And how does he know the future of this group?

By the way, some reviews have been lazy in copying false information. I very much doubt that a prison break covering the distance from 'New Guinea' to Trinidad would work.  The reviewers obviously are mixing up the the largest island in the Indonesian archipelago -New Guinea with French Guiana, which on the northern Atlantic coast of South America.

 1950 version (artist unknown)

I enjoyed the book and was surprised how subtle the story's handling of this strange 11th man and how up to date the writing style is.  I could only see one line that made the book look dated (a reference to how the quantity of aeroplanes was likely to increase!) The atmosphere of unending heat, the availability of water - but none to drink - and their encounters on the mainland were very naturalistic. For those curious about the title, below is the relevant passage but don';t think the whole book is like this, it's not.:

"Listen to me," he said. "There is a town in Jehoraz not far from the old glory of Judea where an old Jew lived. He was very old and he knew that soon he would die, so he had his grave dug before he died to make certain that it would be just as he wanted it. When the grave-digger had finished, the Jew went to the grave and looked down into it and he shook his head and said: This grave will not do at all. The grave-digger was surprised. He'd worked hard and he considered it a good job, well done. So he said: What is wrong with this grave? Then the old Jew replied: I cannot lie in a grave like this. It is much too narrow and much too deep. When the day of resurrection comes, how shall I be able to scale the sides of it and come forth? With the bottom so deep. I will  not be able to climb out. With the sides so narrow, I will not be able to get a foothold. So the grave-digger made the grave shallower and widened the sides, and the old Jew was satisfied and returned home to die."

The book was adapted into a well remembered but renamed classic "Strange Cargo" starring Clark Gable, Joan Crawford and Peter Lorre amongst others. The fact there is no woman in the book (except for in a couple of pages before they set off on their journey) means we have the sexual tension (as best Hollywood can do in 1940) and romance. The best site for more information on the film is here . Roughly translating the non-English titles of the film versions from around the world: Spanish and Italian "Devil's Island"; French "The cursed/damned cargo"; Swedish "Flight/Escape"; and finally the German "The fantastic rescue" (which oddly is most appropriate in my opinion - read the book and you'll see why I say that.)

1936 version (artist unknown)

Sale (and his wife, Mary Loos) did adapt various stories to screenplays but not this one. Famously he directed the sequel to "Gentlemen prefer blondes""Gentlemen Marry Brunettes", written by his wife's aunt, Anita Loos  (1955).

Sale wrote lots of pulp stories in Argosy but also a series of 51 stories in Detective Fiction Weekly called Daffy Dill . To read one click on the link

 Pilgrim Books 1984 (Artist unknown)

Anyway back to Frank Bellamy. The latter part of the 1960s appears to be a time in which Bellamy concentrated on Thunderbirds (after he left the Eagle comic) for TV21. He also produced drawings for the TV 'Avengers' and an advert or three and not much else. This cover (no internal illustrations) illustrated by Bellamy has a brooding portrait watching over the boat at sea and is in my opinion a perfect rendition of Richard Sale's intent - the 11th mystery man, watching over the group. Is he a supernatural being, a devil, hypnotist or Jesus himself?

 Corgi 1971 (Illustration by Michael Codd)

Terry Doyle, the original owner of the original artwork, contacted me, he sent a message to Chris Power, a long time Bellamy fan who owns several pieces. Chris kindly forwarded this message with 2 clearer scans 
Hello Norman, I read your entry on Not Too Narrow, Not too Deep with great interest. I'm in the happy position of owning both the original and also a preliminary of the cover, which I acquired from Terry Doyle some years back. The originals are absolutely gorgeous, very rich and vivid in their use of colour and fascinating as they gives us a glimpse of an unpublished preparatory work almost the equal of the finished piece. I think the final cover is the stronger, maybe because the 'face' is looking down from the right? It's certainly more 'worked' than the unused picture. Was this Bellamy's own decision? Or had someone from the publishers Corgi asked for a further option? The unused version is certainly worked up to a level where you could imagine it being used. 
I must say your blog is an excellent resource for those of us bewitched by Bellamy's work. 

Long may it continue. 
Below are the finished piece together with a preliminary or rejected piece.

The original painting is a lot brighter in colour than its published counterpart. Having the book, I believe the 'devilish' eyes of the right hand portrait (which was either a preliminary or a rejection) appear to me to lead the reader in one direction that I'm not sure the author meant to portray

Finished artwork

Preliminary / first artwork

Many thanks to Martin Baines (for providing older rough photos) which led to Terry Doyle nudging the current owner, Chris Power, to send me the clearer pictures above!

Wednesday 30 June 2010

Bellamy and the Postman always rings twice, Hammett.and James M. Cain. 'Who?' you ask. The third name is not often quoted as being among the founders of the hard-boiled detective novel of the American early 20th century. These authors of noir classics inspired a decade of MGM and Warner Bros. lone detective stories. Femme fatales, heroes who are no good but who take the consequences of their actions when the time comes and so on. Cain's other works made into films include Mildred Pierce (starring Joan Crawford) and my favourite, directed by Billy Wilder 'Double Indemnity' starring Fred MacMurray and Barbara Stanwyck.

But I want to concentrate on "The Postman Always Rings Twice" the 1934 novel which was thought to be inspired by the Ruth Snyder case in America. Frank Chambers (John Garfield, in the original film) is a drifter who stops at a rural diner for a meal, and ends up working there. The diner is operated by a beautiful young woman, Cora Smith (Lana Turner), and her much older husband, Nick (Cecil Kellaway). It soons transpires that the appearance of the young brutal drifter inspires Cora to chase her dream of being free of her disappointing life and together they plot her husband's murder.

The steamy opening to the film begins with the line "It was on a side road outside of Los Angeles. I was hitchhiking from San Francisco down to San Diego, I guess. A half hour earlier I thumbed a ride..." We see a man with itchy feet enter a gas station. He tears down the "Man wanted" notice, enters the diner and sits - being served a hamburger by the friendly owner. Nick, the owner has to leave him to watch the burger, as he goes out to serve a customer that has just arrived at the pumps. Suddenly in the quiet cafe, a noise is heard and the camera follows a lipstick rolling across the floor. The camera, acting as the narrator's eyes pans along the path the lipstick took and hesitates on Lana Turner's feet, and travels partway up her legs. We then see her full figure in a two piece with 40s shoulder pads and hot pants. The lighting is pure film noir shadow, but not obscuring the beautiful 'sweater girl' as she was known.

Steve Holland very kindly sent me scans of a postcard used to advertise a 1980s exhibition of Bellamy's work - more on that later. Bellamy has chosen to compose an illustration showing Cora, a self-possessed woman looking at the guy peeping through the cafe door. The other elements are a circular barstool and a glass display stand with sloping front used in cafes to display their wares. Bellamy's use of shadow here must have come from his work on cinema hoardings and cut-outs that we know he produced while at Blamire's Studio in Kettering in his early life before heading to London and his later comic strip work. The work also shows his earlier signature - more cursive than the later one - and puts the piece firmly in the pre-1950s. But after that we have no idea of where the piece is now. It was shown (the reverse of the postcard is below) at the exhibition "Unseen Bellamy" at the Basement Gallery, Brixton, London between the 15th of July and 3rd of September 1989, 13 years after Bellamy’s death. Several of the pieces that were sold have been tracked down and the corresponding catalogue (see the website for details)  which was published illustrates this very piece. But I'm grateful to Steve for this version as it's much clearer and in monochrome colour. The rear adds a bit of information I didn't know - there was a private pre exhibition viewing. I would have loved to have been there. I would guess among the invited would be the late Bob Monkhouse who collected many of Bellamy's works.

I have added the larger scans to the website just follow the 'note' link on the Unseen Bellamy page  to view Catalogue entry number 3 "The Postman always rings twice" by Frank bellamy....and needless tro say if you bought the original at the event I'd love to hear about your experience.

Tuesday 1 June 2010

Frank Bellamy recent sales

I was amazed to see a couple of recent sales on eBay and thought it might be a good opportunity to mention them here.

 Firstly this ice cream lolly wrapper sold for £26.99 with 6 bids. Mick, who sold this, had a question about the wrappers he was selling (the others were not by Bellamy):
Q:  Hi, is it possible to get each title in both of the two packet front designs (with and without 5d)? Did Frank Bellamy do the art work for all the series of Walls wrappers? Thank you 25-May-10
A:  hi I haven't seen any RED version wrapper that has the price on the front.There is Another version of the red one ,that features a smaller image of the front design on the back .Bellamy only did the artwork for the From the worlds of the Daleks series. All the BEST mick

An unusual and truly rare item. Who would have known it would be worth so much?

Secondly, a copy of the Radio Times, with a cover featuring Jon Pertwee (as Doctor Who) and the Daleks sold, after three bids for £123.25. I personally still have the cover that I cut from my family's Radio Times - again, that seemed the best thing to do to keep a copy!

And finally...

An original Garth strip sold for £150.80. This was from the Bride of Jenghiz Khan story. As I don't actually own a copy of this strip I have taken the scans provided by the seller. The episode number is H282, and I checked the Menomonee Falls Gazette partial index (by Roger Clark) and see that the newspaper reprint finished before they got round to reprinting this particular episode, so it was no use looking to see if I had a copy! I checked, but I don't have a copy of the Dakin reprint from 1979 Garth: Bride of Jenghiz Khan (Daily Strips No. 1).which reprints the whole story (H228-J11) - nor do I have Garth: Bride of Jenghiz Khan reprinted by the All Devon Comic Collectors Club. So, sorry, but here's the best I can do.


I have been asked at work to demonstrate a blog entry being created and wondered is there anything I could show you from my collection, that you've not yet seen? Let me know by emailing me (with a single request, please!) at

You'll need to type this address in your preferred email client.I've been getting some spam and this is my crude attempt to stop that!

Tuesday 18 May 2010

Jon Haward and colleagues win Bronze award

I have just heard that the excellent series Classical Comics, which publishes bright new versions of the classics in graphic novel format (and in Original Text, Plain Text and Quick Text Versions, as well as in American English) has garnered another award. The Independent Publisher Book Awards (the cutely named IPPY Awards) have been announced and The Tempest has won a Bronze Medal.

Congratulations to Jon Haward ( a great Bellamy fan - see previous blog entry) and his co-creators John McDonald, Gary Erskine, and Nigel Dobbyn

Now in order to add some Bellamy art I have to think....did he illustrate Shakespeare? I can't think of anywhere he did that. Did he illustrate any classics (yes, the Pit and the Pendulum) but how about this disaster  illustration - very contemporary reference to volcanic explosions?

Thunderbirds from TV21 # 83

Sunday 16 May 2010

Fans of Frank: Edoardo di Muro

Eagle 4 March 1961

Now I'll confess straight away that I had never heard of Edoardo, but an email I was sent set me off on a course researching his work and I thought I'd add a quick link for you to see what this is about.

In March this year, Eduardo's book "Noir et Blanc en couleurs" (literally 'black and white in colours') was published by ├ędition roymodus. Even if your French isn't up to scratch, this video will show you that Eduardo has obviously been influenced by Bellamy's African colours and in particular by Fraser of Africa (from the Eagle in the UK and Il giorno dei ragazzi in Italy, his birthplace). This entry on the publisher's website shows a beautiful reproduction of a page in Italian - my translation of the webpage appears below - so don't blame anyone else!

In 1961, Edoardo di Muro was 16 years old  when he read the magazine "Il giorno dei ragazzi". On the last page, a strip by Frank Bellamy tells the adventures of "the intrepid Frazer".

More than a comic, it's an immersion in Africa that will impress the adolescent (di Muro) forever, but also the artist in his aesthetic quest

Edoardo di Muro:
 "Outside the town, towards the river between wasteland and scrub, hyenas like scruffy stray dogs roamed around! The round backs of hippos were like large polished stones upon which I jumped without fear of them opening their large mouths... Your beautiful drawings with their stippled shadows have sown the seeds for my career and at the same time formed the backdrop of my life. Thank you big brother Frank!"

You can read more about Edoardo's background here and you might like to follow Google's crude translation here   il giorno dei ragazzi was produced as a beautiful comic supplement for children and featured many strips from the Eagle as well as home grown comics  The only full reprint of Fraser to date is the Hawk Books reprint which appears on eBay, Abebooks and Amazon from time to time

Which reminds me, I'd love to hear what you think about the Amazon gadget on the left. I have so many email requests for reprints, I thought this was a neat way of adding a link. It;s unlikely I'll make anything but hey, it all helps!

Tuesday 4 May 2010

Fans of Frank Bellamy: Steve McGarry

A while ago I read this blog entry  on Steve McGarry (whom I must confess I didn't know - you'll see why in a moment) and noticed that he mentions his favourite artist is Frank Bellamy. Once again on your behalf  I asked if he would be interested in adding to my series "Fans of Frank Bellamy" and the nice guy replied in the affirmative with the following story. Without sounding too sycophantic I also steer towards Steve's tastes in artists!

And before you go searching for the paucity of information on Trevillion, who Steve mentions a few times, he was the guy who did a brilliant job on the Munsters in TV21, for whom Bellamy did Thunderbirds of course.

Long before I knew who Frank Bellamy was, I was a huge Frank Bellamy fan.

Growing up in Manchester in the late 1950s and early 1960s, television was small, monochrome and limited to two basic channels that offered little programming designed to capture a youngster’s attention. So in those pre-videogame days, it was comics that fired our imaginations. We would graduate from The Beano and The Dandy, Topper or Beezer, to the adventure comics ... the girls to their Bunty or Princess and tales of ballerinas and gymkhanas, we boys to the likes of The Victor or The Hotspur. Each week, we would race to the newsagents on the day of publication, ready to devour the adventures of Alf Tupper or Gorgeous Gus and pocket the bonus swag – from football league ladders to cardboard gliders or contraptions that made noises - that was invariably included. Comics were printed in one or two colours on cheap, coarse paper, with one notable exception. In all its full colour, glossy glory, The Eagle was the undisputed king of comics. In addition, every Christmas there would be a football book and The Eagle Annual waiting for me under the tree.

By the early 1960s, I had moved on to the new Marvel comics that had begun to appear on a carousel rack at Fitton's newsagents. I can remember buying the first few issues of Spiderman, The Fantastic Four, Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandos, Thor and sundry others that could have funded a retirement had they been carefully preserved, instead of consigned to a binbag destined for the corporation tip. But my two younger brothers were still loyal to the homegrown imprints, and The Eagle landed with great regularity at McGarry Towers. Having gown up with The Eagle, I'm sure I must have been familiar with the art of Frank Bellamy, but it was his work on Heros the Spartan that really grabbed me. I thought it was the greatest comic art I had ever seen ... and nearly 50 years later, my opinion hasn't changed.

Even so, I can't swear that the artist's name had registered with me, although I must have seen his signature. By the mid-1960s, my attention was fixed firmly on football, girls and pop music, and my appetite for comics had waned ... but I recall admiring the way Frank breathed life into the Anderson puppets in the TV21 comics my younger brothers avidly collected. And while I recognised his style instantly by then, I'm not sure at that point I could yet attach a name to that stunning artwork.

By my late teens, I was learning the ropes in an art studio and beginning to harbour thoughts of pursuing a career in illustration (on the off-chance that one of the many incarnations of my rock bands didn’t take off.) I was particularly interested in sports and music illustration. My inspiration came from the Daily Mirror that arrived on our mat each weekday morning and the assortment of Sunday papers we would take at the weekend. 

The Munsters drawn by Trevillion

By the early 1970s, Paul Trevillion was making a name for himself as the country's premier sports illustrator, and I was captivated by his bold depictions of footballers in the Sunday tabloids. It was around that same time that Frank Bellamy debuted on the Garth strip in The Daily Mirror, and the strip was instantly transformed. Dull, rudimentary line was suddenly replaced by the most vivid and exciting artwork ever to grace a newspaper comics page. I became a Frank Bellamy fanatic. I read the strip avidly for a couple of years, and finally could contain myself no more. Plucking up courage, I wrote to Frank, effusively praising his work and asking if he had any tips to pass on to an aspiring artist. He replied with a very gracious note, warning me that the business was tough but wishing me well. I saved that letter for years ... I even saved the envelope ... and was genuinely upset to discover I had mislaid it when we moved out to the U.S. many years later.

I sold my first illustrations, to the girls' comic Romeo in 1974 ( I was 21) and by 1977 I had taken the plunge and gone freelance. I did the occasional piece for comics, did some ad agency illustration work, and picked up a lot of work in the music business. I designed quite a few record sleeves, including album covers for the likes of Jilted John and Slaughter & The Dogs that showcased my illustration talents.

By then, of course, Frank was gone, having died of a heart attack in1976.

I was employing a linework approach heavily influenced by comic books, and although I was enjoying some success, I felt that I hadn't yet found my style. In those pre-Google days, most artists kept scrapbooks of reference material. Besides photos of interiors, cars, places and anything else I felt might prove useful down the line, I'd also clipped out illustrations from sundry publications, particularly sports and entertainment material. Leafing through one of those albums, probably in late 1980 or early 1981, I came across a Doctor Who cover illustration that Frank Bellamy had done for The Radio Times in 1972. I'm not sure why it hadn't registered with me up until that point, but it suddenly dawned on me that the stipple style he had employed to render Jon Pertwee was a natural fit for me. What if I employed that approach to render portraits of musicians for record sleeves? Better still, what if I tackled the kind of sports subjects that Trevillion covered with a similar stipple style?

In my spare moments, I began to experiment with the approach, using a rapidograph pen for the stipple and dip pen and brush for the hair. I was already a confirmed fan of CS10 line board, which was Frank’s preferred board of choice. The china clay surface accepts ink beautifully and mistakes can be scratched out with a razor blade without any feathering, so the art always looks pristine. Almost immediately, it felt perfect, and I was excited with the results I was getting over a period of a couple of weeks, I created a portfolio piece, a mock poster for Humphrey Bogart's "The Maltese Falcon" as I felt the "noir" subject matter was ideally suited to that style. The finished piece convinced me that I was now ready to try pitching. But who to approach?

The Daily Mirror used a lot of sports illustrations, but they already had Paul Trevillion and a great illustrator called Charles Dupont to call upon. (Which reminds me, I always suspected that Charles DuPont and another Mirror illustrator, Bob Williams, were one and the same. I’d love to know if that hunch was right!) I was a big admirer of Arthur Ranson, who was doing incredible things with biography strips of Abba and The Beatles for Look-In magazine, and I had seen his stuff in such papers as The Sunday Times. I was hesitant to approach any publication that was already working with such outstanding artists, figuring I probably wouldn't get the time of day. Then it struck me that The Daily Star, which had only launched a couple of years earlier, might be in the market for illustrations ... and it was the only national newspaper whose editorial offices were based in Manchester, not a mile away from my studio. The FA Cup Final was approaching and I knew that a lot of papers liked to do special pullouts, usually featuring illustrations. I stuck a photocopy of my ”Maltese Falcon" illustration and a brief note in the post and crossed my fingers.

A few days later I got a call from the paper's art editor, Mike Burnham, who invited me for a lunchtime drink and a chat. One liquid lunch later, I was being introduced to the Daily Star's sports editor, Arthur Lamb. He loved the "Maltese Falcon" sample and loved the idea of doing an FA Cup special. We agreed a very generous fee and shook hands on the deal. On Saturday, May 14, 1981, to commemorate my beloved Manchester City taking on Spurs in the FA Cup Final, I made my national newspaper debut with a giant centre-spread illustration featuring all 24 players and two managers ... all rendered in my new Bellamy-inspired stipple style.

I can honestly say, I've never looked back. Soon, I was illustrating a Steve Davis snooker series for The Daily Star. Then they gave me my own weekly sports illustration spot, as well as commissioning front page illustrations for general elections and such. In 1986, they launched my daily series The Diary of Rock & Pop. By then, I also had my own series each week in the soccer magazine "Match Weekly" and my clients included Look-In and The Daily Mirror. The syndication arm of Express Newspapers began to sell my soccer features worldwide.

United Media, the giant New York syndicate who gave us Peanuts and Garfield, spotted my work and I was invited to sign my first US syndication contract in 1989, the same year that my "Badlands" cartoon launched in The Sun. I moved my young family to California that summer.

At one point in the early 1990s, "Badlands" was appearing daily in The Sun, my "Pop Culture" strip was appearing daily in the Today newspaper and syndicated to 600 newspapers worldwide through NEA, I had a weekly series in the News of The World and a weekly series in "Shoot!' magazine, The Sun was running my daily soccer strip and I was supplying a monthly to SIForKids magazine
[Sports Illustrated for kids]. I've slowed down a little since then ... but I still make the majority of my income from drawing pop stars and footballers!

We've now lived in sunny California for 20 years and my work is still syndicated all over the world. I'm a two-term former President of the National Cartoonists Society and am the first artist to win Illustrator of the Year awards from both the NCS and the Australian Cartoonists Association. And I can honestly say that I owe all of my professional success to the inspiration that Frank Bellamy's genius provided.

As I write, I find myself occasionally glancing at the framed piece of art that hangs directly above my drawing board. It's a Frank Bellamy "Garth" strip (H105 from The Beast of Ultor series) that I bought from Frank's widow, Nancy, a few years after his death. It's one of my most- treasured possessions

Many, many thanks to Steve for this extensive romp through his contact with Bellamy and his own story. Take a look at Steve's site My parents never bought a paper but a friend of the family kindly cut out the Garth strips for me, and we certainly didn't see the later Sun, Today, or News of the World - thus i missed Steve's excellent work until now. Steve, I hope you like the accompanying illustrations.

Now if any of you have an easy was for me to get to John Byrne or Al Williamson, I'd love to add them to my 'Fans of Frank' series

From Steve:
"Incidentally, Trevillion is currently appearing on The Guardian site each week with his long-running "You are the Ref" series, that now runs in The Observer:

Thanks Steve

Friday 2 April 2010

Frank Bellamy - first past the post!

Martin Baines asked me to do a piece on the Bellamy Sunday Times work and a rare opportunity presented itself to make this even more interesting

After his long run on Thunderbirds, Frank Bellamy saw the writing on the wall for TV21 as he knew it - Alan Fennell the editor, was moving on and Bellamy decided to spread his wings and seek employment elsewhere. In March 1969 Bellamy was commissioned to produce a strip about an imaginary young artist called Blenkinsop. We are very fortunate that David Driver of the Radio Times (have you see the photo never before published in this issue of Eagle Times?) and the Sunday Times (Colour) Magazine wanted to send assignments his way.

After completing 6 assignments for the colour Sunday supplement to the prestigious Times, he was asked to create a double page spread for an article on horse racing. This was to be his final work for the Sunday Times magazine, but interestingly due to the generosity of Tim Barnes we are able to compare a rough (that presumably was rejected) with the published version.

Over the Summer of 1989 the Unseen Frank Bellamy Basement Gallery Exhibition took place and several people, (including our old friend Jeff Haythorpe) have written to tell us what they saw at the Gallery. Today we are looking at "Devious ways to win" or as it became when published "Inside Racing". Tim has sent me other scans/photos and I'd like to write about them in the future, so watch this space.

Complete double page spread

The Sunday Times (Colour) Magazine 25 April 1971

It looks as if this commission may have given Bellamy some trouble. Firstly notice that the header strip looks like a Bellamy trick which would allow the Art Editor to add the title "Inside Racing" easily, but he or she has chosen to not use that opportunity and has laid the title and text at the bottom of the art.

'Header or title strip'

But even more interestingly is the rejected idea for this piece. Compare the Bellamy logo title for example - it is so much more dynamic - perhaps too much for the magazine!

Rejected strip sold at Basement Gallery exhibition - Thanks Tim Barnes

One can also see that Bellamy's layouts had to changed and he had started laying some colour in the piece...

Single panel

Perhaps Bellamy mis-counted how many text boxes were needed? We can only guess, but what a fantastic opportunity to see an unfinished and rejected piece. Thank you Tim for sharing this - more pieces to follow.

I'd love to know more about the Magazine itself and the reason that Bellamy's commissions dried up in 1971. Obviously he was then drawing a national daily strip, Garth, but we know of other commissions he received during this time. Was there a change of editor who didn't approve of the prestigious Sunday Times having a comic strip? Bellamy always quoted the fact he had produced the first strip to appear in the Sunday Times, and was justifiably proud of this fact.

UPDATE: The original art came up for sale