Saturday Morning Cartoons: by Nicole Jakubik

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Let’s talk cartoons.

As a kid, Saturday mornings were the coolest because you’d run downstairs in the morning, grab a big bowl of cereal, and go and sit down in front of a TV for the next three hours catching up on all of the cartoons that aired too late the night before for you to watch. Cartoons are all over televisions, movies, newspapers, and books. Cartoons men Garfield and Spongebob Squarepants and the Powerpuff Girls. They’re people’s ideas brought to life in the most creative of ways.

That’s only half true.

Cartoons get cooler, in a very historian-nerdy way. But cartoons aren’t just comical depictions of real life or fantastical situations. Cartoons are the drawings done before stained glass becomes stained glass.

The huge stained glass works of art hanging in churches, chapels, and general all-around fancy buildings around the world all had to start with a drawing.These drawings created the stencil and outlined the details that would then later be filled in with all different colors of glass. The skilled artists would then paint the details in glass in sections that would eventually get pieced together and compiled into huge panels. The amount of detail and precision that went into these pieces is amazing. To be able to create 50 ft works of art from glass that contain facial details, shading on clothing, and textures on trees is an incredible talent.

I love art. I love drawing. I love painting. Never in a million years would I be able to create something so detailed on such a large scale in such a difficult medium. Back before smart phones and electronic tools, people were creating these works of art on their own. They didn’t have galleries of past work to give them inspiration or help choosing a color scheme. All they had were hand tools and a lot of creativity. Which is a god thing, because these works helped people visualize stories for the first time. Before the printing press and before literacy was brought to the common realm, all anyone had was oral storytelling, church, and these marvelous windows. As people went to service and heard the gospel of the day, they could look up at these windows and see some of the characters and events that were being talked about.

These windows helped tell stories, and it’s easy to see how they could.

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