Jim Eldridge – Artist

Jim Eldridge is an artist who drew the long running serial “The Four Marys” in it’s final years (along with some other stories). He has kindly answered some questions on his timeworking for DCT and other comics.

Jim got his first work with DCT through LINK studios, under the agent Doris White. Another well known artist, Barrie Mitchell, also started his career in the same studio and both of them drew Roy of the Rovers strips at different times and have a similar style. This has led to some confusion of their work, but Barrie Mitchell did not draw The Four Marys, that was all Jim’s work. While Jim did draw other stories, it being so long ago, he can’t remember all the jobs he worked on then, and certainly none were as long as the time he spent on The Four Marys.

“When I joined LINK studios I had already has my first strip “Tarzan” printed for the TV Comic. I did various artwork jobs for DCT while with LINK studios but none for IPC. I wasn’t with them very long, I then moved to another agent “Roger & Co.” run by Jack  Wall and Kate Woolley, while there I did draw a few “Wee Sue” for Tammy and also got my first strip for the Bunty comic “The Three Imps” and  I also did “football libraries” for DCT.  That agency was taken over by Temple Art Agency run by Patrick Kelleher, it was while there I was offered “The Four Marys” for Bunty, and I also did Roy of the Rovers on a few occasions. I was with Temple for about 20 years. When Bunty ended I moved again to SGA agency for a few years and then to Linda Rogers agency for a while. I have been with my current agent Paul Beebee of Beehive Illustration for the last 16 years and illustrated many hundreds of Educational Books for most of the main publishers.” [You can see some of Jim Edridge’s more recent work here: www.beehiveillustration.co.uk]

       (The Three Imps – Bunty)

Jim got to know some other artists in the business; Barrie Mitchell, Mike White (Roy of the Rovers artist) and Mike Lacy, but there was no collaboration for Jim with the writers of the stories he drew for.  He was just given the script,  so he would just illustrate straight from script to final art. He only met with the Bunty editor Jim Davie, whom he got on very well with and he passed on the readers’ fan mail for The Four Marys to Jim. The Four Marys was a favourite with readers and many praised his artwork, the story was increased from 3 pages to 4 pages, keeping Jim busy as he had to produce this every week. He did have time for some other jobs but mostly The Four Marys kept him occupied enough, he had no idea it would run for 12 years and as a freelancer he was grateful for the steady work.

“With regard to The Four Marys. That was my favourite story to draw. I had no idea I would be drawing this story for 12 years [..]  I also did Four Marys picture library’s and summer specials as well as the Four Marys weekly pages and it was my artwork that modernised them and in colour.  It was an amazing long run to draw this story and I was thankful for the regular work. Being freelance. Looking back it was good to have drawn Bunty’s top story for 12 years.”

   

Of course sadly Bunty came to an end, but Jim has made his mark on the comic and is happily still working these days illustrating children’s books. “When Bunty finished it was a shock at the time, but I then moved on to Children’s book illustration”

List of Work:

  • Beehive Illustration
  • Football Picture Story Monthly
  • Mike’s Mini-Men (Roy of the Rovers)
  • Roy of the Rovers
  • Tarzan (TV Comic)
  • The Four Marys (Bunty)
  • The Three Imps (Bunty)
  • Wee Sue (Tammy)

9 thoughts on “Jim Eldridge – Artist

  1. Hi Lorraine, many thanks for writing the above blog about me. JIM ELDRIDGE ARTIST. It was good and interesting to hear from you, and I was happy to give you additional information for your page. Thanks again for a very well written blog about my early career. Best wishes, jim.

    1. Good evening Jim

      My sister Doreen has two pictures of Engelbert Humperdinck which were produced especially for her in the 1960s by her friend Jim Eldridge who was an artist. One of them is a charcoal/pencil drawing and the other is a watercolour I think, with a yellow background. I was wondering if you might be the same Jim Eldridge who did those pictures? I was on this site looking for information about the comic Debbie which I used to get in the 1970s and I came across your name on here as an illustrator, so I thought that I would leave a message with my very best wishes.

          1. Jim has said that he’s done many portraits of people in the past and he may have done these two but just can’t remember doing them. I can imagine with it being so long ago, it’s hard to keep track of such things! Sorry can’t get a full confirmation for you.

      1. Hi Debbie.i can confirm I did those two paintings of Engelbert Humperdink for your sister Doreen.all those years ago.and I’m amazed she still has them.

  2. Thank you very much for taking the time to try to find out for me. Your kindness is really appreciated.

  3. Hi. I used to work with Jim Eldridge many years ago at Link Studios with Barry Mitchell
    and Tony Harding. We all used to do comic strips for IPC who were a two minute walk
    away. They were the good old days with lots of laughs. I used to draw Sid’s Snake,
    Scared stiff Sam X-Ray Specs and loads of others. I didn’t actually do anything for the
    girls comics. I have just put the phone down to Jim who gave me your website details.
    We both work through Beehive Illustrations.
    Cheers
    Mike

    1. Good to hear from you Mike. While I just focus on “girls” comics here, I did read Buster and Whizzer and Chips, when I was growing up, I enjoyed X-Ray Specs a lot. Nice that you still keep in contact with other comic creators.

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