Monday, August 11, 2008

An Appreciation of Robert Fawcett

From the October 1953 issue of American Artist magazine, by Henry C. Pitz:

Robert Fawcett is not the only independent thinking illustrator in the country by any means, but he belongs to a minority.

It is an important minority, though, because without turning its back upon the problems of communication that every illustrator must solve, it has a hardcore stubbornness that does not yield to the fad and manner of the moment. It is a minority of individuals who are jealous of their individuality and resist the anonimity of rubber-stamp picturemaking.

Fawcett is as stubborn and positive as the best of them but his stubbornness and positiveness is born of conviction and competence. These qualities have carried him through thirty years of picturemaking without visible wavering or floundering. They have helped him produce an unusually consistent body of work of remarkable high quality.

Now, at a little past fifty, it is a natural time for stock-taking. He is entitles to a certain feeling of smugness after a long backwards glance. He finds his name an important one in a very big and highly competitive field. Not a popular illustrator in the usual sense of the term, he has the deep respect and often the envy of his colleagues. He has been rightly called "the illustrator's illustrator."

Continued tomorrow.

* Check the Robert Fawcett Scans links in my sidebar for the full colour version of today's illustration.


  1. I have not seen these sketches before and really enjoy them. I sometimes like to see sketches & final pencils more than final art. Fawcett's drawings are worth pouring over.

  2. Hooray! Looks like it will be a great week.

  3. every new piece of fawcett work is worth more than gold. tremendous confidence in the lines. looking forward to the rest, and cheers!

  4. As a huge Sherlock Holmes fan, these scans simply blew me away. I was completely unaware of their existence or Fawcett's remarkable work. He certainly gave Sydney Paget a run for his money with these.
    Thanks so much for posting them, you really made my day.