Thursday, June 08, 2006

More Feast than Famine

"There were always ups & downs in freelancing...feast or famine. But there definitley was a slowdown when photography became more popular. It may have been a period when Walter concentrated more on 3-dimensional illustration." I had asked Naiad if the sudden decline in magazine illustration that occurred in the early 60's had impacted her and Walter's workload.

But the 60's ushered in a new era in illustration for which the Einsels were ideally positioned: the rise of decorative styles. As well, Walter had begun experimenting with 3-dimensional moving sculptures ( you can see a couple of them in the photo above ) and in doing so had created a unique and lucrative niche. Naiad described this period in an article she wrote for Northern Light magazine in 1970:

Last summer, when Walter was working day and night on a mechanical sculpture for a television commercial, I was working day and night on a campaign of full-page ads for him along with my own freelance assignments. Since we think so much alike and have such similar tastes, its easy to fill in for each other at any stage.

By this time in their careers, the Einsels had both truly "arrived". They had both done children's books, book jackets, album covers, TV commercials, TV titles, packaging designs, movie posters, and of course, countless magazine illustrations.

As well, they had appeared in Graphis and other design publications, received awards from the Art Directors Club, the Society of Illustrators, The Type Directors Club and AIGA.

Of the inevitable "famine" periods in the life of the freelancer, Naiad says, "We also sent out more self promotion pieces. We had a few agents over the years but we never felt comfortable with them. We always felt better dealing with AD's on our own."


  1. this is such a great story. I love your blog, it really is a massive source of inspiration. thank you.

  2. Thanks, lobstersquad - your comment made my day! :-)

  3. Anonymous1:33 PM

    Ah! I have the book "Illustrators 15" from the Society of Illustrators, 1972 - it has this food knight in it! It says "Walter Einsel, Art Director Harry Redler, Conneticut Magazine, etc. Oh! I'm so happy to see it here!

  4. Thanks anonymous - I'll add that info to the discription in my Flickr set