Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Daniel Schwartz: "blending...easel painting with illustration"

Tom Watson, guest author here on the TI blog, continues his look at Daniel Schwartz, fine artist / illustrator.

Schwartz blended both the methods and freedom of an easel painting, with the standards and discipline of an illustration, without entering into full Abstract Expressionism... at least not in this assignment. For some assignments, you will observe later, that he did push the envelope depicting much more Expressionist energy to his illustrations... depending on the assignment.

What attracted and inspired me to the illustrations of Daniel Schwartz, was his combination of thin washes of oil paint, in broad brushstrokes for the dark masses and middle values, accented with thicker opaque passages for the light values, which is directed at the point of interest. This was not revolutionary in the history of illustration, but it definitely was not a common illustration technique in the 50’s or the very early 60’s.

This painterly effect is also apparent in the illustration above, depicting a wet overcast day in cool blues and grays... befitting of the hardships that confronted these tough minded dedicated women.

Schwartz used a cooler palette for this outdoor illustration, in contrast of several indoor scenes that reflect the amber glow from the gas lights of that period, giving a sense of historical reality to his illustrations.

The first illustration from yesterday’s post, of the woman writing a letter, is set in a quiet subdued tone, while the last illustration of the article above, is set in an energetic vibrant tone, depicting a parade in bright sun shiny colors, shown above.

It completes the story of the struggle of Woman’s Rights to Vote movement in America, changing the mood of this illustration, through color and energy. Schwartz creates the right mood for each illustration, rather than simply painting a series of historical pictures.

In 1961, this young illustration student, who saw something special in a relatively unknown illustrator, found his enthusiasm confirmed in 2002, when Daniel Schwartz was inducted into the prestigious Illustrators Hall of Fame.

Tomorrow: we will explore the changing looks, of Daniel Schwartz’s illustration style.

1 comment:

  1. beautiful work.

    interesting analysis, exquisite technique.

    thanks for sharing. I visit this site just about every day.