Monday, March 06, 2006

Welcome to Lost Art.

When I was a teenager, trying to find my way as an artist, I spent many hours in our little public library in Midland, Texas scouring through books on Illustrators, cartooning, and comics.

While I tried my hardest to appreciate the "fine art" books on the nearby shelves they always seemed vacant and lifeless.

The Illustrator and cartoon books, on the other hand, had a sense of adventure, history, humor, or every other attribute the artist was trying to convey. I was so excited when I found amazing Robin Hood Illustrations by N.C. Wyeth in the book "Treasury of the Great Children's Book Illustrators" that I had my parents take me to make really bad Xerox copies. I took these copies to art school with me. I think I still have them somewhere.

I see now the key distinction between fine art and illustration, at least within the last 80 years, is that Fine Art has generally been focused on self expression while Illustration's job has always been communication. Within that communication the best artist found not only a place for self expresion, But were also able to move the emotions, imaginations and actions of a mass audience through times of war, The Great Depression, Prohibition, and every other manner of social or political situations.

Most of the images posted on this site are scanned and restored from my personal collection and are unavailable elswhere in anyform. Unless you find the original publications, of course. If you would like to contribute artwork, biographical information, or articles on illustration. Please contact me.


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