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09 February 2010
Illustrator: Arthur Rackham
I thought I would start doing a feature on illustrators I admire. There are quite a number of them, and a lot are recognised not only for their cover art, but for their careers as artists as well as illustrators. The first illustrator I plan to feature is Arthur Rackham. He is fairly well know, as his work was quite prolific. I had a lot of my favourite childhood books illustrated by him, as well as others like my copy of Peer Gynt (by Henrik Ibsen). Some others I have remembered reading are Rip Van Winkle, Alice in Wonderland (I am kicking myself for giving this away - I only payed 50c for it when I was a child), A Midsummer Night's Dream, Grimm's fairy stories, Cinderella, The Sleeping Beauty, and Wind in the Willows. I love the line work, the brushwork, and I also really love his silhouettes. They are all simplely exquisite. I to get a tattoo that is the Yggdrasil, Ceiba, Plonte of Pees, the Bodhi/Banyan tree, the tree of life and the Axis Mundi (I am facinated by the parallels in the different mythologies and folklore around the world). I was visualising the design, and a motif I kept seeing over and over was that of Rackham's knarled boughs, and the texture of the bark that he expressed in so much detial with just a few lines. I'm planning on using that to influence the design for my tree tattoo for my back - when I finally get it done LOL
Born Sept. 19, 1867, London, Eng.—died Sept. 6, 1939, Limpsfield, Surrey)
British artist and illustrator. While a staff artist for a London newspaper, he also began illustrating books. He became skillful using the new halftone process, and his highly detailed drawings revealed a unique imagination. He achieved renown with a 1900 edition of Grimm's Fairy Tales, and his illustrations for Rip Van Winkle (1905) brought him recognition in America as well. Altogether he illustrated more than 60 books, including classics of children's literature as well as works by William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, John Milton, Richard Wagner, and Edgar Allan Poe.
Some of his illustrations. Click on them to see the larger versions: