We all know the story of a boy and his best friend - a stuffed toy tiger. Over the years, we might have seen them in various newspapers, comic strip and books. The renowned comic is none other than Calvin and Hobbes - it's a journey of a boy and his best friend created by none other than legendary cartoonist Bill Watterson.
July 5, 2018 remarks the 60th birthday of the talented cartoonist. Calvin and Hobbes's comic strip was concluded in 1995 but even today's generation is fond of it. Why is it so? It's all because Bill Watterson didn't give us just comic but something more. His work spoke great philosophical things in a simpler way also, and who doesn't like an innocent boy and his stuffed tiger – their adventures.
Watterson full name goes by William Boyd Watterson II and he was born in Washington D.C and grew up in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. Ever since Watterson was eight, he had flair for drawing and cartooning. He was fond of various comic strips such as Pogo, Krazy Kat, Peanuts and it inspired him to become a professional cartoonist.
To build his artistic talents at a young age through his school years, Watterson contributed illustrations, artworks, high-school themed super-hero comics to the school newspapers and yearbook. Watterson graduated with Bachelor's degree in Arts with political science.
Watterson like any artist wanted to work for his personal fulfilment and on November 18, 1985, Calvin and Hobbes's comic strip was first published on paper.
Even though his works were illustrations and comics, his work had deep impact meaningful messages hidden in it. His characters Calvin was inspired by John Calvin, the Protestant reformer and Hobbes, the social philosopher Thomas Hobbes. Over the years, the comic strip became viral and gained huge popularity. It was featured in more than 2,400 newspapers all over the world. When in 2010, the strips were rerun in more than 50 countries. Also, 45 million copies of the Calvin and Hobbes have been sold.
On December 31, 1985, the last comic strip was published.
Bill Watterson once said, "We all have different desires and needs, but if we don't discover what we want from ourselves and what we stand for, we will live passively and unfulfilled. Sooner or later, we are all asked to compromise ourselves and the things we care about. We define ourselves by our actions. With each decision, we tell ourselves and the world who we are. Think about what you want out of this life, and recognize that there are many kinds of success."
He also won prestigious awards for his artwork and in 1986, he was the youngest person to ever win the Reuben Award for being "Outstanding Cartoonist of the year". He won the same in 1988. Even though Calvin and Hobbes aren't illustrated anymore, Watterson left a wonderful legacy for his readers and generations to come.