Gismo was by far one of his favorite comic strips. He came up with this idea when he was only 15 years old on the way to the beach, in an old convertible ford with his best friend Bill. He loved the idea of having a teenager being the main character. The jokes and the real life funny, situation possibilities were endless. This comic strip was so good, that Columbia Pictures signed a contract with Ken. But as things sometimes happened back in those days, it never was syndicated. This is probably one of my favorite comics my dad did. I always thought it was so clever and cute and matter-of-fact. I never understood why this one didn't make it huge. Click here to see more Gismo.
Aunt Tique - I often wonder now, where this idea came from. An older woman that was a maid, and took care of the small children and the house. She got herself into situations which made for tongue in cheek comedy. As many artists did back then, he teamed up with another writer by the name of Kimbrell, and made 6 strips. There might have been more, but this is all I could find in the boxes in our old garage. Click here to see more Aunt Tique.
This short comic strip, actually was published with a syndicated company, and ran in the Harald Examiner in Los Angeles, for a month. The character, Lucky as he was named, looks to be a self image of Kens. He created this comic strip, in 1945-46, right out of the Army. He wanted to create something that would reflect the many months and years many service men had to endure. The comic and lighter side is what he hoped would bring to the soldiers, during such a horrible war. There's actually a couple of the strips, in which he is painting or drawing. He definitely was doing a self image in these. During the war, a small newspaper article was written about him. That he had done multiple cartoons for the walls in the recreation center at Camp Howze, in Texas. Click here to see more Lucky.
Ah, yes...Rock. This is his only comic strip, that he worked hard, off and on endlessly, for many years and made over 100 strips. This would be the strip he took to New York with him, when he was only 26 years old. He pounded the pavement, seeing over 35 top publishers, trying to sell this strip. When I came across over 20 love letters that my mother and he wrote back and forth when he left for NY for a month to find work, I realized this particular strip was something he worked on the longest. The drama and intricate art work in this strip, has probably made it my favorite serious strip he has ever done. Seems he came back over the years and kept adding to it. In the beginning he did all the art work, and a friend of his, that was a writer just starting out, was writing all the stories. But when he went to NY, the publishers told him multiple times that the art work was very good, but the story line wasn't very good at all. Its then, when he decided to write it himself. But again, it never got picked up by a publisher. Click here to see more Rock Beaumont.