An illustrator draws some sketches at lightning speed. He first illustrates how he can turn a written word into a sketch of that word. The first word he writes is coon, which he transforms ... See full summary »

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J. Stuart Blackton ...
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An illustrator draws some sketches at lightning speed. He first illustrates how he can turn a written word into a sketch of that word. The first word he writes is coon, which he transforms into a sketch of a black man. The next word he writes is Cohen, which he transforms into a sketch of a Jewish looking man. He is then visited on set by another man, who makes a smudge on the drawing surface. The illustrator turns that smudge into a sketch of that visiting man. And finally, he draws a drinking glass, a bottle of milk and a bottle of seltzer which take on lives of their own. Written by Huggo

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Animation | Short

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15 July 1907 (USA)  »

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Well Worth Watching
6 November 2012 | by (Louisville, KY) – See all my reviews

Lightning Sketches (1907)

*** (out of 4)

Early animation film has director J. Stuart Blackton playing the cartoonist who draws a couple sketches for us in front of the camera. The trick then becomes when he draws a wine bottle and a glass and then we see the bottle come to life and pour itself into the glass. I'm sure many people might watch this today and not see what the big deal was but animation was still at a very early age and this film at least manages to be very charming from the word go. I thought the drawings early on were rather impressive and I especially liked how Blackton would write a word and then use it to bring the character out. The animated sequence with the bottle obviously doesn't look like anything today but why would anyone expect it to? The sequence is actually quite charming and looks very well even when compared to animation from a decade later.


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