An inductee of the Society of Illustrators Hall of Fame, Earl Oliver Hurst’s work is unmistakeable. Born in 1898 New York, Mr. Hurst’s career was exceptionally successful, of course, not without a difficulty. He chopped and changed his path and titles quite a few times but worked with a host of clients along the way. Some of his well known magazine work includes Collier’s, American Weekly, True, Pictorial Review, McCalls, and Home Magazine. Also doing numerous advertising illustrations for the likes of Nabisco, Royal Crown Cola, General Electric, Sanka, Jantzen Swim Suits, and Swan Soap.
A decidedly wonderful book of his work was published by Hermes Press in 2005 called, The Art Of Earl Oliver Hurst. If you are luck enough to find it at a reasonable price, it’s definitely worth picking up.
Culled from our Illustration Now! series is this selection of today’s most successful and important illustrators from around the globe. In his introduction, Steven Heller fleshes out the challenging process of narrowing down a field of 600 illustrators to a selection of the 100 most significant. The final cut, including artists such as Istvan Banyai, Gary Baseman, Seymour Chwast, Paul Davis, Brad Holland, Mirko Ilic, Anita Kunz, and Christoph Niemann, provides a snapshot of the highly dynamic and diverse world of contemporary illustration.
The Book Review:
TASCHEN is widely revered for their subject mater, high quality, and grand formats of their books. Their latest tome, 100 Illustrators, is no exception. A large textured slipcase encloses the two volumes. The covers themselves working as teaser for what’s inside. The pages are thoughtfully plotted, retaining emphasis on the gallery aspect of the book. Though there is plentiful information per illustrator (presented in English, French, and German no less), thanks to the large format of the book, both images and words sit without compromise on the page.
The variety of illustrators featured span numerous fields. However, I would say editorial illustration takes centre stage, with a spotlight on 2D illustration. There is a host of very famous features including eBoy, Gary Baseman, Jeremyville, and Gary Taxali. It is always great to see their work so magnanimously presented. I was also quite pleased to see some illustrators previously featured on The Lounge, such as Daniel Egnéus, Gez Fry, Kako, Tara McPherson and Autumn Whitehurst.
As you can imagine with a book this rich in content I was introduced to a superb list of illustrators. That list includes Peter Diamond, Minni Havas, Patrick Hruby, Roberto Parada, Yuko Shimizu, and Yuri Ustsinau. Which leads me on perfectly to what this book accomplishes best. It is a platform for expanding your own illustration sensibilities. 100 Illustrators exposes it’s readers to a host of styles and techniques for their consideration. When one is presented with a collection, this vast, of illustrators at the forefront of their field it becomes difficult not to draw inspiration and learn from their work.
One qualm I do have is the prominence of editorial illustration, it would be much more beneficial to see work crossing a multitude of illustration fields, such as animation, design, visual effects, video games, and street art. If a book is presented as an overview of illustration, and essentially focuses on a single field of illustration, it can limit a reader’s perception of the art form as a whole. However this does not take away from the fact that work in the book is first-rate and is exhibited at the highest standard. 100 Illustrators will be released this December, retailing at the fantastic price of £34.99. I would highly recommend it, especially for illustration students, it will make an excellent Christmas treat.
Born in Madrid, Spain, Irma Gruenholz creates marvellous hand-made clay models. Pastel-toned, with a hint of surrealism, her crafted illustrations have been used for books, magazines, advertisements, prototypes and props. Her pieces are made quite large and are a combination of materials including modelling clay, paper, metal, wood and a assortment of found objects.
Robert Stewart Sherriffs was born in Arbroath, Scotland. He attended Edinburgh College of Art where he studied heraldic design along with fine art. Just before turning 21, Sherriffs moved to London.
He found work in advertising studios, however grew tiered of the tedious nature of the work so he began sending examples of caricatures to magazine. He got his break when the weekly tabloid magazine, Bystander, published his caricature of actor John Barrymore (yep, Drew Barrymore’s granddad). The illustration caught the eye of Beverley Nichols, who commissioned Sherriffs to produce a series of portraits for his column in The Sketch.
This exposure led to further work in magazines including Theatre World, Pall Mall, and The Strand Magazine. He also regularly contributed to The Radio Times and later on Punch magazine. Sherriffs also illustrated a number of books, including The Life and Death of Tamburlaine the Great, and Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. The former was comended by one of Sherriffs important influences, Edmund Dulac.
There is a sad turn of events to Sherriffs’ career. He had intended to bring together some of his personal drawings for an exhibition. However, after being diagnosed with cancer, he set fire to all his work prior to being admitted to hospital. Sherriffs died at the age of 54.
I was introduced to R. S. Sherriffs by the current exhibition at The Cartoon Museum, Age of Glamour: R. S. Sherriffs’ Stars of Stage and Screen. There were various pieces including portraits, set, and costume design. Throughout the whole exhibition I had my jaw wide open. Sherriffs is a master. His control of the brush is some of the best I have had the pleasure of seeing first hand. His lines perfectly sweep thin to thick. His tones are one flat colour. Throughout the exhibition I can not remember seeing any cover-ups or mistakes. The first thing I wanted to do when I left the exhibition was buy a big book full of his work, but alas, no such luck. The closest thing published of a body of Sherriffs’ work is Sherriffs at the Cinema, which solely concentrates on his famous caricatures.
I feel some of his previous printed material do not do his illustrations justice. The last book of his work was published in the 1980s. Sherriffs’ work desperately demands a modern, more befitting, bounded showcase to be fully appreciated. (ahem, publishers please take note)
His rather surrealistic work is a joy to look at. Although its predominantly illustration it does have a graphical vibe. His good use of negative spaces, typography and layout make him a fantastic modern editorial illustrator. Although he studied for a degree in graphic design he is now taking a masters in illustration and animation. We look forward to seeing more from this fellow.