Eighty-nine years young, David Weidman is the subject of a long profile in today’s LA Times written by David Keeps. Weidman began his career in animation in the 1950s working at John Hubley’s commercial studio Storyboard as well as on UPA’s The Boing Boing Show. An extensive career in TV cartoons followed as he painted backgrounds for the Crusader Rabbit revival, Calvin and the Colonel, and Wacky Races, among others.
In the Sixties, while running a vintage poster and framing shop (and still working in animation), he began to create silk-screened serigraphs in the back of his shop. He produced three hundred designs over twenty years, but few people expressed interest in purchasing them so he wound up with stacks upon stacks of serigraphs. But that’s not how the story ends. In the early-2000s, his work was rediscovered in the LA area, in part due to his nephew who was peddling the serigraphs at local flea markets (which is how I first learned about his work).
Since then, his star has continued to rise: a handsome coffeetable book of his artwork was published recently (it’s now in its third printing), and Urban Outfitters has begun licensing his work for pillows and wall art. It’s a happy story about a one-of-a-kind artist who deserves all the acclaim he’s getting. Weidman clearly loved and believed in the artwork he was creating–producing 300 different serigraphs that nobody wanted to buy is a testament to that–and it’s finally paying off forty years later.