Marion - Louche Kunsthandel, by Jan Wesseling
Marion - 'Louche Kunsthandel'.

Jan Wesseling is best known as an illustrator, but he has also created comics during his long career. Born Johannes Anthonius Wesseling in Ouderkerk aan de Amstel, he studied advertising at the Don Bosco School in Amsterdam. He was sent to work in Germany during World War II, where he kept his artistic ambitions alive by drawing portraits of deceased and missing family members of his factory co-workers. After the War, he was sent to the Duch colony Indonesia during the Politional Actions. There, he drew for several soldier's magazines, as well as the Tiger Brigade memorial book 'Tussen Sawahs en Bergen'.

Marion by Jan Wesseling

Back in the Netherlands, he found employment with several advertising agencies, but in 1956, he joined the team of talented Dutch comic artists at the Marten Toonder Studios. He initially worked on 'Koning Hollewijn' and 'Tom Poes', but his best known work from this period is the newspaper strip 'Marion'. This melodramatic comic was one of the few balloon strips produced by Toonder at the time. It appeared in De Telegraaf between 1957 and 1961. Scripted by writers like Lo Hartog van Banda and Harry van den Eerenbeemt, Wesseling soon got help with the art duties from Thé Tjong-Khing, who also took over when Wesseling left the strip completely.

Cis en Soezie by Jan Wesseling
'Cis en Soezie' (Tina, 1983).

Wesseling then turned to illustrating, making romantic drawings for women's magazines like Rosita, and illustrating 'Pipo de Clown' text stories for Donald Duck. He briefly returned to comics in 1966, when he made one episode in the series 'Athi' for Pep. He was replaced by Gerrit Stapel. His final comics were the gag strip 'Cis en Soezie' in Tina in 1983 and 'Joker', a comic he finished after Piet Wijn had suffered from a stroke, in Ezelsoor in the mid-1980s.

Jan Wesseling has made cover illustrations for many famous children's books, such as 'Oorlogswinter' by Jan Terlouw, 'Oorlog zonder Vrienden' by Evert Hartman and the 'Thule' trilogy by Thea Beckman. He also made illustrations for magazines like Donald Duck, Okki, Jippo, Taptoe, Bobo, Tina, Revu and Margriet. He completely retired from drawing in the mid-1990s.

Okki cover by Jan Wesseling
Cover illustration for Okki. 

Series and books by Jan Wesseling you can order today:


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