Douglas Simonson (Peppo)

Author Photo

Photo courtesy of Amazon

Front Cover

Peppo refers to the Peppo Vision Group. And now you know as much as I about the name.

Title Page

I found this book at St Vinnies,  on one of their 50% off all books day.

It caught my attention because it was cartoons, but also because I lived in Hawaii from the late 50’s to the mid 60’s.

When I got home I realized that the sales slip from the original purchase was in the book. I think someone made an impulse purchase, then just put it aside until it got donated to St. Vinnies. The sales slip is instructive, and a good indication of how much information people can glean from going through your trash.

This book was bought at the Kona Costco (not Kailu-Kona, Oahu, but Kona on the big island) for $6.29, along with Women’s Brief’s for $9.99, and something called: KS HC CR 4PK FOR $5.39. The cardholder is a business member using an American Express card. This all took place at 5:52 pm on the 16th of August, 2002.

As I mentioned, the sales slip was in the book, adjacent to the printing history.

I think that whoever bought this, probably thought (s)he could wow them back home by dropping pidgin slang into conversations. They probably ignored the following notice from the book.

Word of Caution

Once home, I imagine the idea of sprinkling pidgin into conversations got round filed, as the effort to explain the expressions was not worth the aggravation. Also, they might end up looking like a jerk, trying to insert their Hawaiian vacation into other conversations.

All that said, when I lived in Hawaii, (when it was still a Territory), pidgin was not used that much by my friends, and fellow students. Don Ho probably used it in his act, but his price range was beyond my budget.

So, let us peek at a the introduction and then a few of the cartoons, and then spend some time learning about the cartoonist.


Inglish Pidgin Dictionary

Oh, yeah. Haloe is slang for a white person. When I lived there we also had happa haloe, or mixed race, white and one other race. Guess that would not be PC today. But, today is today and that was then.




real hawaiian0001

Ah, yes. The friendly natives.

Which leads us to Peppo and his avocation.

Intro to Poppo

This book is still in publication, according to the publisher

Pidgin To Da Max  12.95

Ken Sakata, Douglas Simonson

paperback, 7.5″ x 9.25″ 112 pp


Wonder what happened to Pat Sasaki? He is listed as a collaborator in my copy, which I assume was published in 2002.

I had left Hawaii before they started publishing.

A lot of information on author, courtesy of Amazon:

and an excerpt: About Douglas Simonson

Douglas Simonson is one of the world’s best-known interpreters of the male figure. His work hangs in collections in over 80 countries on 6 continents.
Born and raised in the dry, dusty cattle country of the western U.S., Simonson was encouraged in his art by his mother, also an artist. When he was 19, Simonson left his home town of Thedford, Nebraska to move to Honolulu, Hawaii.
In Honolulu, Simonson studied art at the University of Hawaii and the Honolulu Academy of Art. He also drew, painted and studied voraciously on his own, absorbing the influence of such diverse masters as Velázquez, Vermeer, Rubens, Sorolla, Sargent, Gauguin, Van Gogh, Cézanne, Modigliani, Matisse and Picasso.
Simonson also found time for an amazing diversity of experiences and careers, from sign-painting to typesetting to writing radio and television commercials. Then, in 1981, with the help of two close friends, Simonson wrote, illustrated and published a book called Pidgin to da Max, which went on to become one of the best-selling books ever published in Hawaii. Since then, Simonson has created or co-created 14 books, which have been published in 3 countries and in 5 languages, with a total of over 350,000 copies in print.
At around the same time as the success of Pidgin to da Max, Simonson began experimenting with fine art again — something he had not done for several years. Although he’d been fascinated by the male figure for most of his life, his own fears and insecurities had kept him from exploring it in his art. But around 1980, Simonson put aside his fears and began focusing on the male nude as his primary subject matter.
At first he was concerned that the male figure might be too narrow a focus, that it might limit his growth as an artist. But the opposite proved to be true. For the first time, Simonson felt that he was painting what he had always been meant to paint. He found the male figure to be a continuous source of inspiration, and he began producing art–paintings, drawings, prints–with an energy and enthusiasm that he had never felt before.
Today Simonson is as committed to, and inspired by, the male figure as he was then. In the interim he has shared his art with hundreds of thousands of admirers, been interviewed in dozens of newspapers and magazines and on television and radio, has shown his work in many venues, and built a worldwide reputation.
One of the most unusual aspects of the career of this unusual artist is the fact that galleries are not his primary means of reaching collectors. For the first 15 years of his career, Simonson communicated with most of his clientele by mail, sending color slides, and sometimes printed flyers, to interested collectors. In this way the artist built a global following.
Thus Simonson was uniquely positioned to benefit from the advent of the Internet. He built his first website in 1995 and within a few months his art was selling briskly online. Millions of visitors later, his website is his primary gallery, showcasing thousands of his works, and offering a broad range of Simonson art-related items, like posters, limited-edition prints, calendars, cards, books, e-books and more. You can also read Simonson’s Artist’s Blog (a WordPress blog also accessible through the Simonson website) to get an entertaining and profusely illustrated insight into the artist’s creative process.
In 2010 the artist added a new website for admirers of his photographs, Simonson On Location. This subscription site showcases uncensored photographs from Simonson’s photo shoots in Hawaii, California, Brazil and other beautiful parts of the world.
Douglas Simonson keeps a studio and office in Lincoln, Nebraska, while living and working in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. You can contact the artist directly at, or by postal mail at: Douglas Simonson, PO Box 22278, Lincoln NE 68542, USA. Phone: (808) 779-7934 or (308) 221-1360

He also has a blog.

The artwork on the blog contains general and mature items.

And that is the end of the post, or as the cartoon states, pau hana.

Pau Hana





About visualhumor

Enjoy viewing and collecting visual humor from around the world.
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3 Responses to Douglas Simonson (Peppo)

  1. Douglas Simonson says:

    Hey Ted, glad you enjoyed Pidgin to da Max and thanks for the outline on the book and myself. The book was created and published in 1981 and yeah, it’s still in print, though the publisher is now Bess Press. I created the initial rough draft and concept, then my friends Ken Sakata and Pat (Patricia) Sasaki stepped in to, in their words, “kick your okole (butt) so this actually gets published.” The 3 of us worked together for about a year to put the book together, then, when we got no interest from local publishers, decided to self-publish. We did, by getting contributions from many friends, who then got free copies when we published. Word got out, and the first run of 5,000 copies sold out in a week. Yeah, it was a runaway hit, which floored us. Wonderful experience. Sorry to say, Pat Sasaki died about a year ago, and we miss her a lot.

    • visualhumor says:

      Thank you so much for fleshing out the post. I always try to get backstory/information on the cartoonist(s) to put with the cartoons.
      I think your comment would work well on my post of January 2013 on how to publish your own cartoon collection. Please let me know if I can add it to that post.
      I don’t know if you happened to look at the post for Michael Cochran and his ‘Cartoon book of Santa Fe’, if not, the comments from the Mark Nassutti about actually producing the book will probably strike a nerve with you.
      Both your and Mark’s comments speak to the ability to get your book out, and what it took back in the day. Actually, and in spite of the current platforms to produce digital copy, watching your book come to life in your own hands is a wonderful experience.
      I am sorry for your loss of Pat Sasaki. As far as I know all my friends from the UofH of the early 60’s are still alive.
      Again, thank you for your comments.

  2. Douglas Simonson says:

    Oh yeah, one more thing–my nickname at the time was Peppo. And I always said that my first company would be called Peppovision. Hence the name. Now you know.

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