Sometime in the 1970’s I sent off in the mail for info from one of those “Draw Spunky” or “Can You Draw Me” advertisements you would see in the back of magazines. Sometimes these little ads would be on matchbook covers too. This brochure came in the mail. I didn’t take this course, which was a home correspondence style study, but I kept the brochure and ran across it recently.
The school was in Minneapolis, MN and it was open until 2018. Even though people have joked about the “Draw Me” ads over the years, Charles Schulz, the creator of the famous “Peanuts” comics, studied and taught there. Despite the unusual sales pitch, it was a bonafide school that created some pretty famous illustrators and cartoonists. The instructors had careers in addition to working with the school and were professionals in the field. I thought this was interesting, and I noted how there was only one woman in the group of instructors/advisors. Advertising and design, or “commercial art” as it was called then, was a male dominated profession at one time. This woman, Barbara Schwinn, was a very popular illustrator in the 1950’s. She did a lot of work for women’s magazines depicting glamorous fashion and romance style figures. If you are interested in design and illustration history, she’s a good one to research.