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Thursday, December 15, 2005


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Born February 22, 1920 Raton, NM
Died December 27, 2003


Animation, Comic Book, Syndicated Cartoon strip, Background and Layout artist.

Bio Summary

Pete Alvarado was born in 1920 and was raised in Glendale, California. He attended Chouinard Art Institute. Soon after graduating from art school he was hired at Disney as an animation assistant and first worked on Snow White and Dumbo. He worked mostly on shorts by Disney as a background artist and later as a layout artist.
Pete soon left Disney to serve in World War II as a marine. Upon his return he moved to New York and found work as a comic book and cartoon strip artist. Eventually Pete moved back to California and worked long stints at animation studios such as Warner Bros., Disney, and MGM. Over his sixty year career Pete Alvarado has worked with almost every major publisher and studio in the cartoon industry. He has illustrated comic books, coloring books, comic strips, and dozens of Little Golden Books. He was awarded the Winsor McKay Award for his lifetime achievement and the Screen Cartoonist Guild Golden Award for his commitment to the craft. He died Decamber 27, 2003.

Early Life/Family

Pete Alvarado spent his childhood and early part of his adulthood in Glendale, CA. In his adult life his family included his wife, Kathleen, son Peter III, and daughter Paula, grandson, David, and sisters Juanita and Dolores.


Pete attended elementary school at Holy Family School and high school at Hoover, High. He won a scholarship to attend Chouinard Art Institute. After art school Pete was hired by Disney as an assistant and received training as a layout and background artist.

Career Outline

Pete Alvarado’s prolific professional career in the cartoon and comic book industries started at Disney as an animation assistant and worked on Snow White and Dumbo. He soon moved to New York and found work as a comic book artist for many different publishers including a company called Timely (later changing its name to Marvel). He worked in New York for eighteen months and had made ties and connections with various publishers including Western Publishing. Within Western, Pete worked on coloring books, kids’ books, comic books and later newspaper comic strips. Roy Rogers was a title Pete worked on with Charles McKimson and the strip was signed “Al McKimson”, which was a combonation of both Pete and Charles’ names. After Roy Rogers, Pete decided he wanted to stick with the funny animal cartoony style of strips. These types of strips were a lot of fun for Pete and he could let his sense of humor out in the characters’ expressions and movements. Soon Pete returned to California still continuing to illustrate comic strips and comic books, but with a continued focus at the animation studios. Pete illustrated the entire run of Mr. Magoo comic strips and often filled-in on many Disney strips as well as Hanna-Barbara titles, The Jetsons, Yogi Bear and the Flintstones. Later on Pete became the main artist on Donald Duck. He also spent a long time working for the Dell/ Gold Key series that often would take animated cartoons an features and render them in book form. Pete a master at taking the look of the animated character and drawing the characters with more expression and flair than the original version. Pete often penciled 20 – 40 pages of sequential art all the way up into his late seventies.
Upon his return to California from New York, Pete started working at Warner Bros. in the time called the Golden Era. He worked mainly on the short animations as a background and layout artist. His first on-screen credit was the second Pepe LePew cartoon entitled, Scent-imental Over You (1947). He worked alongside Chuck Jones designing and developing the look of the backgrounds in the first Road Runner cartoon. Pete worked as a contract artist and a freelance artist for almost every major animation studio, such as Warner Bros, Disney, MGM, UPA, Hanna-Barbara, Filmation, Marvel, Depatie-Freleng, Krantz, Sanrio, and Ruby-Spears as well as many others.

Comments On Style

Pete Alvarado has worked for almost every animation company and publisher out there. He was able to take and adapt to any character and style for any project. He was often hired to take Warner Bros. and Disney characters and putting them into comic book for keeping to the design and the style of each character. He brought intensive care and love to each project whether illustration a character of background.


Growing up in the nineteen twenties and thirties, and being exposed to cartoons like the Allice Comedies, Oswald the Lucky Rabbit, and Mickey Mouse, it would be fair to say that these were the primary reasons for him wanting to be an animator. When he was in the Institute which was being financially helped by Walt Disney, he and his classmates immediately went over to Disney when they finished.


Pete Alvarado has often been described as “One of the Good Guys” of the animation Industry. He was a loving husband and caring father and a good friend to people acquainted with him. He was said to be painfully shy, but when approached he would stop to talk with anyone who wanted to chat with him. He accepted work with a creative flare and pleasure and always gave 110% to the project. He loved his job and treated everything he worked on with care and a strong sense of professionalism. People say that Petes’ jolly face brought smiles to anyone he worked with and had known him. He always had a love for telling stories about his history in the industry and his positive attitude about new future talent gave you the sense that it was more than “just business” to him.


Pete Alvarado had a deep faith and trust in God. This fact seems apparent in his outlook and his personality. He served in WWII as a marine and even though he thought the idea of the war was dumb, he served his country proudly.


Pete used to surround himself with reference when he worked, it gets injected into the work he said in an interview by John Cawley. Pete was a true professional when it came to his craft. He hand work in on time, numbered correctly, and clean.


Scent-imental Over You (1947) (background artist)
Mouse Wreckers (1948) (background artist)
A Feather in His Hare (1948) (background artist)
Rabbit Punch (1948) (background artist)
Haredevil Hare (1948) (background artist)
You Were Never Duckier (1948) (background artist)
House Hunting Mice (1948) (background artist)
Daffy Dilly (1948) (background artist)
My Bunny Lies Over the Sea (1948) (background artist)
Scaredy Cat (1948) (background artist)
So Much for So Little (1949) (background artist) (layout artist)
Awful Orphan (1949) (background artist)
Mississippi Hare (1949) (background artist)
The Bee-Deviled Bruin (1949) (background artist)
Long-Haired Hare (1949) (background artist)
Often an Orphan (1949) (background artist)
Fast and Furry-ous (1949) (background artist)
Frigid Hare (1949) (background artist)
For Scent-imental Reasons (1949) (background artist)
Bear Feat (1949) (background artist)
Rabbit Hood (1949) (background artist)
The Scarlet Pumpernickel (1950) (background artist)
Homeless Hare (1950) (background artist)
8 Ball Bunny (1950) (background artist) (layout artist)
The Ducksters (1950) (background artist)
Two's a Crowd (1950) (background artist) (layout artist)
Bunny Hugged (1951) (layout artist)
Scent-imental Romeo (1951) (background artist)
Big Top Bunny (1951) (layout artist)
The Prize Pest (1951) (layout artist)
Who's Kitten Who? (1952) (layout artist)
Thumb Fun (1952) (layout artist)
Kiddin' the Kitten (1952) (layout artist)
Sock a Doodle Do (1952) (layout artist)
The Turn-Tale Wolf (1952) (layout artist)
Oily Hare (1952) (layout artist)
The Bugs Bunny Show (1960) TV Series (layout artist)
Pink Panic (1967) (background artist)
In the Pink (1967) (background artist)
Super President (1967) TV Series (layout artist)
The Bugs Bunny/Road Runner Hour (1968) TV Series (layout artist)
The Pink Panther Show (1969) TV Series (background artist)
Here Comes the Grump (1969) TV Series (layout artist)
The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show (1971) TV Series (layout artist)
The Houndcats (1972) TV Series (layout)
The ABC Saturday Superstar Movie (1972) TV Series (layout artist)
Bunnicula, the Vampire Rabbit (1979) (layout artist)
Goober and the Ghost-Chasers (1973) TV Series (layout
Mesa Trouble (1974) (layout artist)
Wheelie and the Chopper Bunch (1974) TV Series (layout artist)
The Pink Panther and Friends (1976) TV Series (background artist)
A Flintstone Christmas (1977) (TV) (layout artist)
The Looney, Looney, Looney Bugs Bunny Movie (1981) (layout artist)
The Puppy's Further Adventures (1983) TV Series (layout artist)
The Bugs Bunny/Looney Tunes Comedy Hour (1985) TV Series (layout artist)
Daffy Duck's Quackbusters (1988) (layout artist)
Merrie Melodies: Starring Bugs Bunny and Friends (1990) TV Series (layout artist)
Yo Yogi (1991) TV Series (character designer)
That's Warner Bros. (1995) TV Series (background artist) (layout artist)
Behind the Tunes: Blanc Expressions (2003) 
Behind the Tunes: Man from Wackyland - The Art of Bob Clampett (2004) Himself
Behind the Tunes: The Charm of Stink - On the Scent of Pepe le Pew (2005) Himself


Annie Award: Winsor McCay Award 2001
Animation Guild Golden Award for service to the craft

Related Links

Bibliographic References

Contributors To This Listing

Enrique O. Rivera (History and Trends of animation student)
editor: Brother Rabbit

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