I find traces of Joe Simon’s unique humor throughout the Simon and Kirby productions. But it was only when Joe began to produce the magazine Sick that his humor was let free. As you can see from this new advertisement Joe’s brand of comedy has not left him.
The photo is based on one in Joe’s collection. I have previously posted on the comic book artist Ken Riley. Actually a better description for Riley would be an illustrator and sometimes comic book artist. In illustration at the time, an artist would first make a proposal to a client and only if it is accepted produce the actual illustration. So Ken would have his friends act out the pose he wanted and then take a photograph to present to his perspective client. Obviously it was not necessary to get the scene perfectly, I am sure the woman in the final piece was not have Harriet’s expression.
Although you cannot tell if from this photo, the building in the background is a rather unusual one, it had no roof. Harriet Simon loved to sun bath so Joe had it built to provide her with some privacy. The cot you can see inside was the only piece of furniture.
Along with some others, I have been helping Joe with some book proposals. I do not think it would be proper for me to go into details about the project. Besides I believe it is almost like movie deals, you only know a proposal is really going to be done when it has actually been published. I have no idea where Joe got the 1000 figure. When I made a book of the Simon and Kirby covers I believed that including the covers Joe did before meeting Jack there were 386 covers. My opinions on some of these covers has changed but I have also added some Simon covers so the tally is now even slightly larger. If you add covers and stories there maybe a total of about 1200 pieces. But Simon and Kirby was a production studio and if you include work by other artists for that studio a figure about 3400 would be more appropriate. Counting pages of art, instead of just covers and stories, and the count goes over 17,000. If you add in the work Joe produced for Sick the number climbs much higher. I have not inventoried the Sick stuff so I cannot even hazard a guess.