How did artists like Norman Rockwell, Austin Briggs, Jon Whitcomb, and others create the believable unique faces that can tell a whole story by themselves? In a magazine cover, like those by Rockwell and Stevan Dohanos, the image, with its setting and, most of all, its characters, must convey an anecdote without any help from words. So each face must be carefully crafted to do its part in creating the drama⸺or comedy.
In How I Make a Picture by Al Parker, he wrote about his creative process for magazine story assignments. The artist’s first step was to read the manuscript while keeping the target audience in mind. As characters entered into the tale, he jotted down their descriptions – hair color, eyes, age, type of clothing, disposition, etc. He also searched the narrative for a passage that would catch the reader’s attention; he termed this the “stopper”. Parker’s final tip on successful illustrations was understanding the mood of the piece. Is it romantic, humorous, suspenseful, or tragic?
If you want to observe an artist at work, a good place to start is with his or her sketchbooks. Here are ideas, techniques, observations, memories – all the underpinnings of the finished work. Often the contents are so free and spontaneous that they draw us in, wanting and needing nothing more than these simple lines on paper.
The Society of Fellows at the Rockwell Center for American Visual Studies announces a seminal conference:
LOCATION: Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri,
DATE: March 21-23, 2019
CONVENED BY: The Rockwell Center for American Visual Studies at the Norman Rockwell Museum, Stockbridge, Massachusetts, and the D. B. Dowd Modern Graphic History Library at Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.
Contributed by: Marisa Losciale
Fred Seibert is a name that may not be automatically recognized (although it should), but the companies Seibert has worked for and the projects he has approved are well-known by people of all ages, all over the world. The PowerPuff Girls, Dexter’s Laboratory, Cow and Chicken and Adventure Time are a few of the many iconic cartoons green-lit by Seibert. On the evening of March 11, Seibert held an interview and Q&A at the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts discussing his career and how he got to be such a success.
2011 Rockwell Center Scholar, Michael Lobel Awarded the 28th Annual Eldredge Prize for His Book John Sloan: Drawing on Illustration
The Smithsonian American Art Museum has awarded the Charles C. Eldredge Prize for Distinguished Scholarship in American Art to Michael Lobel for his book John Sloan: Drawing on Illustration (Yale University Press, 2014). The jurors cited the meticulous research and exceptionally high quality of prose of the book. Sloan’s early work in illustration has frequently
Photo of Joyce K. Schiller, inaugural curator of the Rockwell Center for American Visual Studies, Norman Rockwell Museum. Norman Rockwell Museum is sad to learn and report of the passing of Joyce. K. Schiller, the Museum's first curator of the Rockwell Center for American Visual Studies. Schiller was a passionate and consummate scholar of