Zenas Winsor McCay (1867-71? - July 26, 1934) was an American cartoonist, writer, and animation pioneer. McCay's art style is immediately recognizable by its incredible detail and awesome perspective. Check the other wiki's media page for some examples.
His most famous comic, Little Nemo, is a surreal adventure through the bizarre world Nemo visits when he falls asleep. Other works include Dream of the Rarebit Fiend, an entire strip about people suffering Acid Reflux Nightmares, which inspired perhaps the first Live-Action Adaptation ever, in Edwin S. Porter's 1906 film Dream of a Rarebit Fiend.
McCay was also one of the first animators, the self-described "originator and inventor of animated cartoons". His first "attempt at drawing pictures that will move" was a two-minute Little Nemo skit in 1910; he drew over a thousand stills by himself, by hand. His most famous cartoon is probably Gertie the Dinosaur, an animated short from 1914 that set the bar for future animators. Gertie was also the first film to ever use the Roger Rabbit Effect.note
McCay was the first to treat animation as a serious, dramatic art form, producing a detailed documentary rendition of The Sinking of the Lusitania in 1918. It contained over 25,000 realistic drawings, again all done personally by hand, taking nearly two years to complete. This also counts as the first Wartime Cartoon, as it explicitly served as a piece of propaganda in favor of the U.S. entering World War One. At the time it was the longest piece of animation ever made. Historians say it took until the 1930s for other animation studios to catch up with the level of technical skill McCay demonstrated.
- Little Sammy Sneeze (1904 to 1906)
- Dream of the Rarebit Fiend (1904-13)
- A Pilgrim's Progress (1905 to 1910)
- Little Nemo (1905 to 1914)
- Poor Jake (1909 to 1911)
- Little Nemo (1911)
- The Making of "Little Nemo" (1911)
- How a Mosquito Operates (1912)
- Gertie the Dinosaur (1914)
- The Sinking of the Lusitania (1918)
- Dreams of the Rarebit Fiend: Bug Vaudeville (1921)
- Dreams of the Rarebit Fiend: The Pet (1921)
- Dreams of the Rarebit Fiend: The Flying House (1921)
- The Centaurs (1921)
- Flip's Circus (1921)
- The Barnyard Performance (1921)
- The Flying House (1921): Winsor's last animated project. Was unfinished for ninety years until indie animation legend Bill Plympton put together a crew to finish it.