I must have been six or seven years old when I first came across Roy Doty's illustrations in a pile of old Popular Science magazines from the 1960s. Doty's "Wordless Workshop" comics featured a pipe-smoking dad who solved common household problems with ingenious but easy-to-make devices.
I instantly became a fan of his elegant, light-hearted, clear-as-a-bell drawings, and whenever I found old copy of PopSci at a garage sale or used book store, I'd tear through it until I found his two-page cartoon, which he started doing in the early 1950s.
A couple of years ago, I learned that Roy was still actively drawing, for magazines and books. I immediately emailed him and asked him to become the illustrator for MAKE magazine's puzzle page, called Aha! (in homage to another hero of mine, Martin Gardner, who wrote two books I treasure: Aha! Insight and Aha! Gotcha, now available in one volume). Roy was happy to oblige, and has illustrated the column ever since. I can't tell you how exciting it is to get the faxes with his rough sketches for the column. Of course, he needs no art direction; he knows exactly how to illustrate the puzzles.
Every year, Roy sends out whimsical Christmas cards, and this year's is a masterpiece — a Mousetrap / Rube Goldberg-style holiday celebration machine. Link