Norman Pett

Artist and creator of WW2 comic strip 'Jane' poses with his Dachshund Count Pumpernickel who inspired the character of Fritz in the comics.

Norman Pett (12 April 1891, Kings Norton, Worcestershire - 16 February 1960, Sussex) was an English artist who, in 1932 created the famous cartoon character, 'Jane' for the Daily Mirror.[1][2]

Early lifeEdit

Pett was born on 12 April 1891[1] in Kings Norton, Worcestershire.[3] After being invalided out of the First World War, he studied art at the Press Art School. Later, he taught art at the Mosley Road Junior Art School and at Birmingham Central School of Art.[1]


In 1932, he set out to create a comic strip that would be as popular to adults as the famous 'Pip, Squeak and Wilfred' was to children. And so, Jane was created. For the first few years, Pett's wife Mary modeled for him but eventually he started to use professional models instead, the most famous of which was Chrystabel Leighton-Porter who modeled for him during World War Two.[4] Until the war, Jane had a little daily funny story, but at the start of the war, she became a continuous story.

"The turning point in Jane's career, when she became a success was when we turned her from a daily joke into a continuous story. In other words, when she was stripped in both senses of the term," Pett told Pathé News in 1943.[5]

Pett retired from drawing Jane after drawing her for 16 years in 1948, and the strip was continued by Michael Hubbard.[6]


He died at his home in Sussex on 16 February 1960 of undisclosed causes.


  1. ^ a b c Saunders, Andy (2003). Jane: A Pin-up at War. Casemate Publishers. ISBN 9781844150274.
  2. ^ Holloway, John (1983). The Slumber of Apollo: Reflections on Recent Art, Literature, Language and the Individual Consciousness. Cambridge University Press. pp. 33. ISBN 9780521248044.
  3. ^
  4. ^ Quetteville, Harry (2012). Thinker, Failure, Soldier, Jailer: An Anthology of Great Lives in 365 Days - The Telegraph. Aurum Press. ISBN 9781781311080.
  5. ^ "Jane 1943". British Pathé. Retrieved 3 June 2016.
  6. ^ Horn, Maurice (1976). The World encyclopedia of comics, Volume 1. Chelsea House Publishers. pp. 335. ISBN 9780877540427.