A Christmas Trimming
10” x 8” Miniature Litho (1999)



Character images (c) Disney Enterprises, Inc. are provided for infor mation purposes only and not for commercial reuse or reproduction.

Carl Barks’ fowl miser, Uncle Scrooge McDuck, is the twentieth century’s counterpart to Charles Dickens’ forerunner, Ebenezer Scrooge, and he plays true to his penny-pinching role in a setting of infamous stinginess, A Christmas Trimming. (Painted in 1972, Barks’ original title was, simply, Christmas Composition.) It was the second of only two lithographs -- both miniatures -- released by Another Rainbow with a three-dimensionally paper-sculpted surface (the first was a full-figure portrait of Uncle Scrooge, Pick and Shovel Laborer). It is the only Barks print, however, to have a sprinkling of pearl-dust ink applied, a Japanese woodblock technique dating back to the 1800’s which enhances the effect of falling snow. The results, undeniably impressive on close inspection, were virtually invisible when published in the catalog. (Unframed lithographs were shipped by the company with a tissue overlay to protect its unique and fragile surface.)
Barks historian Barbara Boatner speaks fondly of Christmas Composition in her text in The Fine Art of Walt Disney’s Donald Duck by Carl Barks. “’Tis the season to be Scrooge. Christmas is a time of giving, and Scrooge figures it may as well be to him. Barks has effectively used the dark snowy night, the pale chill lights of the Duckburg buildings and the inaccessible glow behind the leaded diamond panes to heighten the misery of the shivering ducks, looking here like Shacktown outcasts, who are handing over their last mites of silver for a twig-sized Christmas tree.” Some of the descriptives used by Boatner point out the reasons A Christmas Trimming was chosen as one of the original ten images for an English bone china figurine, as pictured in the book, Carl Barks and the Disney Ducks. In the production of what would have been a very large prototype, however, it was determined that the edition of maybe only fifteen copies was going to have to retail for a hideous amount, possibly $20,000 each, not a risk Another Rainbow decided it wanted to take. Barks did design the entire concept, however, and it would -- without doubt -- have been spectacular!
Boatner’s text continues, noting that “Barks usually preferred to draw the ducks at some happy pastime and in cheerier circumstances, but this scene brings out a part of Scrooge that lies all too near the old miser’s heart. The painting, says Barks, was commissioned by a ‘long-beak enthusiast’ who preferred the earlier Donald ‘with a bill like a shovel’.”
A Christmas Trimming was printed by the Black Box of Chicago in four U.S. editions. The image size is 10”x 8” on 13 1/2”x11” Opalesque Silk TM , a paper constructed of 100% cotton fiber for strength and longevity that is guaranteed not to fade under normal, stable storage conditions for hundreds of years. The first edition was of five Progressive Proof boxed sets; the second, extraordinary White Sculptures of only 13 pairs of prints (one, three-dimensional, white, in bas relief and signed by Barks, and the other, full-color, unsigned, to complete the package); third, 100 Gold Plates: and, fourth, 595 Regulars.
Chronologies: in the Fine Art book, Christmas Composition appears as Plate 10 on Pages 82 - 83, Carl Barks’ sixteenth oil painting of 122 reproduced. The original art measures 20”x16”. On the back cover to Walt Disney’s Uncle Scrooge #318 (Series II), February 1999, A Christmas Trimming is prominently displayed. This is the last issue published by Gladstone: a classic! While the supply lasts, it may be ordered directly from Another Rainbow (See Gladstone web pages.)


  • Regular Edition Price for #11 and up $350 (sold)
  • Regular Edition Price for #2-10, add 15% (available)
  • Regular Edition Price for #1, add 55% (available)
  • Gold Plate Edition #11-100, add 20% (sold)
  • Gold Plate Edition #2-10, add 55% (sold)
  • Gold Plate Edition #1, add 125% (sold)
  • Publishers and Printer’s proofs, add 80% (available)
  • Artist Proofs, add 120% (available)
  • Progressive Proofs, Special Editions and Foreign Editions, inquire. (available)

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