Billy Whizz was one of my favourites when I was a kid. There is something very appealing about characters with special abilities – especially if they act as a handicap as often as not.
But Billy’s speed gave the artists and writers at The Beano a very good excuse to use their imagination with the story lines. So you could have Billy playing football by himself – and acting as striker and goalie, as he could outpace the speeding ball once he had kicked it.
This panel is taken from the very first Billy Whizz strip, back in May 1964. I love the style of the title piece – it reminds me of those old advertisements you used to get on the side of buildings.
This is selected, like many of my panels and images, from the 1960s and 1970s, and should make a great gift to anybody who is into retro, vintage, old school design. I tend to choose material from this era because it was the time I was growing up and my tastes and preferences were being formed. But also it’s a pre-digital age, and the drawings are all made by hand rather than computer aided. Obviously, as I’m a screenprinter, I’m biased in favour of the handmade, so this style is right up my street. I hope it is yours.
Standard size: 25cm x 19cm.
Handmade, limited edition screen print on mould-made, cotton paper.
Signed and numbered out of 200 in pencil by the printer, John Patrick Reynolds
© D.C. Thomson & Co., Ltd.