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March 3rd - St Trinian's School by kanyiko March 3rd - St Trinian's School by kanyiko
A Year in Comics - March 3rd

St Trinian's School for Girls


Ronald William Fordham Searle was born in Cambridge, England on March 3rd 1920.  He started drawing at the age of five and left school at the age of 15, but followed two years of art classes at the Cambridge College of Arts and Technology.

In April 1939, as the clouds of war gathered over Europe, Searle abandoned his art studies and enlisted in the Royal Engineers.  Eventually he was posted to Singapore, where in 1942 he, along with his cousin Tom Fordham Searle, was taken prisoner of war by the Japanese.  He spent the rest of the War imprisoned, originally held in the Changi Prison, and subsequently as a slave labourer on the Siam-Burma Death Railway in the Kwai Jungle, where he contracted beri-beri, malaria, was severely maltreated by his Japanese guards, and lost weight until he only weighed 40 kg.   Despite his ever deteriorating health, Searle held a meticulous record of his imprisonment in the form of illustrations, as a record of the events so people might one day find out what was going on.  However, Searl survived to be liberated in August of 1945 after the Japanese defeat, taking along with him some 300 drawings, most of which were later published, and the originals are held in the permanent collection of the Imperial War Museum in London.

Following his recovery, Ronald Searle went on to serve as a courtroom artist at the Nuremberg trials.

However, already before his wartime ordeal in South-East Asia, Ronald Searle had served as a cartoonist for the British magazine Liliput, for which he completed a cartoon about a British boarding school named St Trinian's.  As unremarkable as this first cartoon was, it provided few hints of what was to follow.

Following his return to England, Searle submitted a number of new St Trinian's drawings to the Liliput magazine, some of which he had drawn during his captivity.  Whereas the single pre-war cartoon was completely innocent, the post-war cartoons established the boarding school as the polar opposite of the quaint British institutions known from real life and other authors' work - St Trinian's was a place where the pupils ruled, violence was rife, rules were broken, and bodies of teachers and pupils alike were gently swept under the rug - or the lacrosse lawn.  The popularity of the series meant, that even as it was still running, it was adapted into a number of feature films (four made between 1954 and 1966, with a fifth made in 1980, and two made in a rebooted series between 2006 and 2009)

During the 1950s, Searle not only completed a number of St Trinian's books, but also made cartoons for the LIFE, Holiday and Punch magazine; and the New Yorker, Sunday Express and News Chronicle newspapers.  He also collaborated with writer Geoffry Willans on the Molesworth series of books about the school bully Nigel Molesworth; worked with the journalist Alex Atkinson on a number of humerous travel books; illustrated advertisements and posters; and drew the title backgrounds for a number of films, including the 1965 comedy Those Magnificent Men in their Flying Machines; and the 1969 film Monte Carlo or Bust!.

In 1947, Searle had married fellow-Liliput journalist Kay Webb with who he had twins; however the pair broke up in 1961 when Searle moved to Paris.  Following this move, Ronald Searle shifted focus to working more as a journalist, quitting with the St Trinian's series with which he had become disillusioned.  Instead, he created a number of books including several cat books; worked on a number of animated films; and designed commemorative medals both for the French Mint and the British Art Medal Soriety.  Following his divorce from Kaye Webb in 1967, Searle married painter, theatre and jewellery designer Monica Koenig, which who he would remain married until the last months of his life.

Over his life, Searle's work earned him much recognition, receiving numerous awards and honours, including the British CBE (2004), the French Chevalier de la Légion d'honneur (2007); and the German Order of Merit (2009).

Ronald Searle passed away on December 30th 2001, aged 91, just months after his second wife Monica, who had passed away as a result of breast cancer in July.

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Precia-T's naughty harpy Olle-T finds that even she is out of her depths among the pupils of the St Trinian's School for Young Ladies...

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78th entry of ?

March 2nd - Dr. Seuss by kanyiko <- Back to March 2nd -----  March 3rd - Hamtaro by kanyiko Bonus March 3rd entry ----- Forward to March 4th -> March 4th - Mandrake the Magician by kanyiko
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:iconpaws4thot:
paws4thot Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2017
Well, even I had to muck about with IMDb and Wikipedia to come up with "The Wildcats of St Trinian's" because I wasn't aware of it, but have DVDs of the other 6.
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:iconbenitezdk:
benitezdk Featured By Owner Mar 3, 2017  Professional Digital Artist
... Indeed a tough start! ... And a great come back! ... :heart:
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:iconropeman1:
Ropeman1 Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2017
Olle's face.  XD
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:iconkanyiko:
kanyiko Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Well... I think she might have bitten off more than she can chew by joining that lot... >.>
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:iconropeman1:
Ropeman1 Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2017
I can imagine Pumori watching from a safe distance, laughing...  ;)
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:iconkanyiko:
kanyiko Featured By Owner Mar 8, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
LOL! XD
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:iconburstlion:
burstlion Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Huh
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:iconkanyiko:
kanyiko Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2017  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
... Lacrosse is usually not played with handgrenades, you know... ;p
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:iconburstlion:
burstlion Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2017  Hobbyist Digital Artist
This is true XD
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