In his early days as Editorial Art Director of the San Jose Mercury News, for the 50th anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima, Kevin proposed a full-page graphic novel style presentation. Armed with a detailed sketch by veteran artist Jim Hummel with text by Karl Kahler, and copies of the graphic novels “Barefoot Gen” and “Maus,” presented the concept to the Managing Editor. David Yarnold took one quick look at the sketch and said, “This is an [expletive] cartoon about Hiroshima. Not in my newspaper.” Kevin prepared a fine photo/map treatment instead. But he also didn’t give up on this “graphic novelization” idea.
A few months later, for a story about Begin and Sadat getting the Nobel, Kevin had Jim prepare a graphic novel style treatment of the history of Israel up the signing of the accord, and the awarding of the prize, as a half-page, in black-and-white, on the back page, to acclaim in the newsroom. David even wrote a note to the artist (see image detail). Nice!
The Art Department went on to produce about 20 more of these large, “Illustrated History” graphics during Kevin’s time at the paper. Here are a few samples.
All of these samples were written by Karl Kahler.