Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Attack of the 50 Ft. Telephone Repair Guy!

1956 - '57 was a good time in Dom Lupo's career. He landed an account with General Telephone Systems that saw him illustrating a series of magazine ads featuring a GIANT telephone repair man.

Actually, these ads are where I first became aware of Lupo's work... how could anyone miss that bold signature? No doubt this series is also where America would have really had the chance to notice Lupo. The unique (admitedly hokey) concept, repeated with the minor variations you see here, month after month in the Saturday Evening Post must have provided Lupo with unprecedented exposure...

Unfortunately, it seems to have not made a difference. As I mentioned yesterday, I have found almost nothing in the way of story illustrations by Lupo in the major mainstream magazines of the 50's.

You can take a closer look at the work of this underappreciated illustrator in my Dom Lupo Flickr set.


  1. Hi Leif,
    I've really enjoyed your recent posts and as always, am intrigued by the potential back stories of the various unsung talents you feature. I've checked a bit on Dom Lupo, and one of the other important illustrations he did was the cover of the Boy Scouts manual (7th edition, after Rockwell's). I remember this version when I was a scout back in the early 70s. I'll continue prowling around and let you know if I find more on him.

  2. Jack;

    Thanks for your encouragement! :-)

    That is a neat clue... I didn't know Lupo had done such a high profile piece of work. I'll have to check through my Boy's Life magazines for anything else he may have done for the Boy Scouts.

    I'm thrilled that you share my enthusiasm for these lesser know illustrators and look forward to hearing the results of your detective work!

  3. Leif,
    As no-frills as Lupo's commercial art was, I very much appreciate his strong and capable sense of paint. What medium did these commercial guys work in? Seems like oil would have been much too slow for their client's needs. Casien? Guoache? Doesn't look like watercolor and I suppose acrylic wasn't around yet.

    Thanks for posting these.

  4. Les; I LOVE that term: "no-frills commercial art" - perfect way to describe Lupo! Clearly you appreciate the same qualities I do in his illustrations. :-)

    I can only guess that you're probably right that acrylics were not yet in use. From everything I've heard it was the age of guoache and casein - especially in commercial art circles.