Inspired by Rob Richards fantastic Animation Backgrounds website, I’ve recreated a background from a classic 1942 Tom and Jerry short called “Bowling Alley Cat”. By recreated, I basically mean I take screenshots as the camera rolled by the background, then overlay them like the pieces of a puzzle. I used pieces to cover up any character animation and digitally airbrushing in any holes. This allows for a pristine version of the original background art.
I probably shouldn’t be wasting my time on recreating others people’s artwork, but I have a fondness for these cartoon backgrounds. A lot of amazing talent went into creating them, and I imagine many of the originals don’t exist any more. If I do others like this, they’re likely to be of similar mid-century and retro futuristic subjects.
Click on the image above for a super-sized panoramic version of the artwork. And if you like this sort of thing, be sure to check out Rob’s website. He’s apparently on a bit of a hiatus right now, but his archive of restored animation backgrounds is astounding!