Syd Miller (cartoonist)

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Syd Miller
Born Sydney Leon Miller
24 December 1901
Strathfield, New South Wales, Australia
Died 31 December 1983
Wahroonga, New South Wales, Australia
Pen name Noel
Muller
Occupation Cartoonist, illustrator, animator
Nationality Australian
Period 1917-1964

Syd Miller (1901-1983) was an Australian comic book writer, artist and illustrator, best known for his cartoon creation, Chesty Bond, for the Australian clothing company Bonds.

Biography[edit]

Sydney Leon Miller, was born on 24 December 1901 in Strathfield, New South Wales,[1][2][3] the son of a newsagent.[2][4] Miller attended Fort Street High School until the age of fifteen[5] when he left to work briefly at a pharmaceutical importer[1] and then as a trial apprentice in the process engraving department of The Bulletin.[1][2][4] Inspired by the work of The Bulletin's artists, he took art classes at night at the Royal Art Society of New South Wales.[1][2][5]

In 1917 Miller joined Harry Julius and was associated with his company Filmads,[5] which produced the first animated cartoons made commercially in Australia.[2][3][4] As a freelance artist he contributed to many periodicals, including the Bulletin, Aussie[2][4] and in 1920, Smith's Weekly.[4] Miller was employed by Smith's for the next twelve years, to draw political, sports and general cartoons, as well as to write and illustrate film and stage reviews.[3][4][5]

In 1923 he married Susan Austin and they had two children, Robn in 1928 and Peter in 1930.[2] Miller was a founding member of the Black and White Artists’ Club in 1924.[4][6]

During the 1930s Miller continued to created newspaper comic strips, such as Curiosities, in Melbourne's The Herald[2] and Nature Notes and Weird and Wonderful in Sydney's The Daily Telegraph.[2] In 1938 he collaborated with Ted Maloney of the J. Walter Thompson agency to create Chesty Bond,[3][4] designed with the idea of promoting the Bonds clothing company's singlets.[2][5] Miller handled the advertising strip until he joined the Herald and Weekly Times in 1945[3] and the strip passed to another artist, Francis 'Will' Mahony.

From 1942 to 1945 Miller published numerous comic books, with his single column spot, Animalaughs,[5] which started in 1948 appearing throughout Australia, as well as being syndicated in England, Scotland and South Africa.[1][2] Between 1945 and 1956 he worked for the The Herald, where he created the strip, Rod Craig,[2] in 1946 which ran until 1995[5] (a record for a continuity strip in Australia at that time).[1] In 1955 he created a new daily strip, Us Girls,[4] which appeared in The Herald on 3 December 1955, and ran until he resigned from his job in 1957 to enter into a partnership at Ajax Films,[1] in the production of television animation and sound-slide films.[2][4][5] In the mid-1950s he created a second advertising comic, A Little Bear Will Fix It,[3][4] promoting the sale of adhesive tape for Behr-Manning. Miller retired in the mid-1960s.[2]

Miller's wife, Susan died in 1978 and five years later, he suffered a severe stroke and was admitted to Sydney Adventist Hospital, where he died on 31 December 1983.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g Horn, Maurice (1983). The World Encyclopedia of Comics, Volume 4. Chelsea House Publishers. p. 494. ISBN 0-87754-323-2. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Foyle, Lindsay (Autumn 2009). "Testy Chesty Noodled by Bonds Move". Inkspot 58. Australian Cartoonist's Association. p. 6. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f "History of Australian Cartoonists". Australian Cartoonists' Association. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Kerr, Joan (2007). "Sydney Leon Miller". Design & Art Australia Online. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h "Syd Miller". Lambiek. 16 November 2007. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  6. ^ "The History of the ACA". Australian Cartoonists' Association. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 

External links[edit]