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Tags  →  art-history

Jessie Willcox Smith - Vintage Book Illustrations

“I Love My Little Cat”

(click the image for I AM A CHILD - children in art history, a wonderful art resource for childhood)

“The Seven Ages of Childhood:
5. Then the Scholar, With Eyes Severe and Hair of Formal Cut”


(click the image to read a scanned online copy of the original vintage book!)

Jessie Willcox Smith, according to Wikipedia, “was a prominent female illustrator in the United States during the Golden Age of American illustration and ‘one of the greatest pure illustrators’”.

Thanks to Gatorindo (David) and ensemble5 for these!


If you like this...

[Try clicking the childhood tag - just a suggestion!]


“Today the account of an extraordinary encounter with an extraordinary woman, leading me from Erfurt in Germany to Wessex in Britain, Simiane in the Provence and Orsalina near Locarno in Switzerland” —Gerbrand Caspers

A modern view of Simiane-la-Rotonde, Provence


“View of Simiane”, probably 8th century

If you're interested in art and/or history, click either image for a typically fascinating entry (one of very many) in Gerbrand's Linosaurus Blog - a detective story behind just one of thousands of linoleum and woodblock prints.

(Gerbrand hails from the Netherlands, but he is kind enough to present most of his treasure-trove in English.)



Gatorindo writes:

“Great art site full of prints and etchings from all over the world with comments and facts about the works - lots of stuff to see and use here...”

For an example of what you might find here, see my next post.

Thanks again, David!


(BTW, this site is written mostly in English, but a few parts are in Dutch. If you didn't know already: the Chrome browser is great for viewing pages in foreign languages, since it has an automatic translation facility.)



"October" by James Tissot (1836-1902)

Found on the beautiful pages of ensemble5 - a visit to her pages is highly recommended (and so is clicking her tag at the top of this post!)

(The linked page is a great art resource, BTW... click the palette below if you would like to see a list of more art sites featured on my pages.)





"Trivium is an online art history book, an ongoing project to catalog, crosslink, and make freely available artworks and information. Navigate through chapters and images using the left and right arrow keys, or swipe left and right on touch sensitive devices."

Well worth visiting.


"In The Elbank, Hamburg 1886" by the Norwegian impressionistic artist Frits Thaulow

This is the most beautiful and enjoyable arts programme that I have ever seen - with the added bonus of having been filmed in HD - don't miss it if it eventually comes round to your TV networks.

This was Sheila's own programme (only some of which is reflected here), and it is about more than painting; it is about a way of looking at life.


A scene from the English Lake District, one of many beautiful locations featured in this film.


Sheila Hancock is the widow of John Thaw (best known for Inspector Morse), and is a wonderful person and actress in her own right.



Venice has inspired many watercolour artists...


...from J.M.W. Turner, who had a rough time getting his style of painting acknowledged...


...to modern watercolour artists like the Venetian painter Nicola Tenderini (Nicola is a man's name in Italian!) who still use Turner's techniques today


Some amateur watercolour artists are better known than others, although not always for their artistic work. This Scottish landscape is by Queen Victoria.


Sheila also looked at the sombre and modern side of watercolour art. This is a winter landscape by the English artist Paul Nash...


...who also recorded many images of WWI, both haunting and horrific


Sheila also met (among others) Douglas Farthing, a soldier for 23 years, who used watercolours to record scenes in Iraq and Afghanistan (often painted on crate lids) as well as keeping an illustrated diary. His work is well worth following up.


With segments on the Alps and India, Sheila's programme also featured work by Alexander Cozens and by Charlotte Canning. The latter had a rather sad life married to the Governor-General of India but was a talented and prolific watercolour artist.



"The Flying Cloud" (1926) by Montague Dawson


"Evening Light at the Port of Camaret" (1892) by Charles Cottet


Ceanna had what was probably the best art gallery on SU, which was where I found the two paintings above, together with Ceanna's usual excellent summary of each. The good news is that she is now here on Categorian (as Ceara)!






"Moonlight on Mt. Fuji" (ca. 1920-1929) by Lilian May Miller (1895 - 1943)

Found on the always-beautiful SU pages of Cyrion


(Original post: May 1st, 2010)

We are lucky to live near Cambridge, but it almost always seems to rain when we go there! Luckily, the Fitzwilliam Museum is a great place to visit in any weather.

On this occasion there was a free exhibition of the works of three of the most original painters of the late 19th and early 20th centuries: John Singer Sargent (1856-1925), Walter Sickert (1860-1942) and Stanley Spencer (1891-1959), together with some of their contemporaries.

I really liked these:

"Scene from Lee, North Devon" by Samuel Palmer


"94 degrees in the shade", a self-portrait by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema


"Guidecca", Rio della Convertite on Guidecca Island, watercolour over traces of graphite on paper, by John Singer Sargent
This was my favourite work in the Exhibition. Painted from close to the water-line, it seemed to me to have perfect proportions.


"Sletching on the Guidecca", watercolour by John Singer Sargent
This wasn't shown at the Exhibition, but it's one of my favourites so I'm including it anyway!

In another part of the Museum I couldn't resist taking a photo of this beautiful item:

Plate: the Elements of Earth, Fire, Air and Water
London, 2000
Enamelled by Jane Short (b. 1954)
Silver, spun, engraved and decorated with champleve and basse taille enamels

(BTW: This photo was taken without a flash - I just darkened the background and lifted the colours a bit)


If you liked this...

[My previous post on John Singer Sargent]
[The Corpus Clock in Cambridge (my previous post below)]



"Farm by Stream and Bamboo Grove" by S. Ishida

One of many pre-war Japanese watercolours at this excellent site - thanks, Alison!

(Original post: August 8th, 2009)

The Lady of Shalott [on boat] (1888)


Juliet (1898)


Hylas and the Nymphs (1896)


A Mermaid (detail) (1901)


Windflowers (1903)

Some of my favourite paintings by J.W. Waterhouse, the "Modern Pre-Raphaelite", found on this excellent web site.

My wife recently visited an exhibition of his work at the The Royal Academy of Arts in London, which includes these paintings among many others. She tells me that the originals have a kind of lustrous beauty that doesn't show up in reproductions (as I found out for myself when I later visited the exhibition).


[More links on J.W. Waterhouse]



Carl Larsson, 1853-1919, Swedish painter and illustrator

I love this. Thanks again to Aline for this one... click the picture for more work from this great artist!


(Original post: September 28th, 2008)

[Lake District visit continued from above]



This is a view of Sawrey, between Windermere and Esthwaite Water, as painted by Beatrix Potter. The fact that so much of the Lake District is unspoilt is due in no small part to her using the proceeds of her famous children's books to acquire large areas of working farmland, in order to preserve them in their original use.




"Hill Top" near Sawrey was bought by Beatrix as her personal retreat. Even after marrying William Heelis this was her private place for herself alone, and in her will she instructed the National Trust to keep it exactly as she left it - it was to have no other personal use.







Hill Top Farm, not open to visitors, adjacent to Hill Top




The entrance to...




...the world's most famous vegetable patch!




Inside the house, apart from Beatrix's own work, the rooms have many paintings and illustrations that Beatrix acquired from other people, including a couple of illustrations by Randolph Caldecott (1846-86) illustrating the nursery rhyme "Sing A Song Of Sixpence". This one is "The Fowler's Snare".




Another painting hanging in Hill Top is "Two Girls On A Jetty" by George Dunlop Leslie (1835-1921)




"Apple Dumplings" by George Dunlop Leslie - this one isn't hanging in Hill Top but I'm sure that Beatrix would have liked it!


[Location of Hill Top on my England Map]


[Lake District visit continues below]