This exquisitely illustrated single page story appeared in the School Friend Annual of 1975. The book originally belonged to my sister (she is almost 5 years younger than me) but I have always loved this story and the annual is now part of my 'vintage' collection.
I always think it is such a pity that publications such as this one never acknowledged the contributing artists. Even a list of their names at the back would have been a great help. I could make a stab at trying to identify the artist of this lovely work based on other books I have from the same period, but anything I suggest would at best be an educated guess. If anyone knows who the artist is for sure I would really appreciate it if you left me a comment.
I love everything about these illustrations - the rich colours, fairytale quality, beautifully drawn features and sense of movement. The picture above brings on my paper doll making itch. The two below remind me of a storyboard for an animated film. The whole feel of these pictures would lend themselves to one beautifully.
Another clear influence that I can see (and I think it is deliberately done) is the Très Riches Heures du Duc de Berry. The calendar contained in the manuscript is something I have always revered as one of the truly great collections of art - not just during the Medieval period but in all time. The panel below left in particular always reminds me of the planting and harvest scenes such as the one for September on the right.
|Très Riches Heures - September|
This story always makes me think of a book I am hoping to find even though I am not completely sure what I am looking for. When I was very young a friend of my mother's had a book I coveted greatly of the Twelve Days of Christmas. The illustrations had the same fairytale feel about them. Other than that I'm assuming it was published in the 60's I know nothing else about the book - just a tantalising memory of something I remember being very special. The wonder of the web has brought back some precious and often completely forgotten memories for me - such as the Carlotta Edwards prints I featured last week. My hope is that one day the book I am looking for will turn up just as unexpectedly.
|School Friend Annual 1975|
In keeping with the slightly medieval theme - I took this photograph of Dublin Castle from my office window a few weeks ago. There was this wonderful stormy sky and a shaft of silvery grey light lit up the tower and brought out the detail.
|Dublin Castle - View from my Office Window|