Thursday, March 05, 2009

More Artists of Blue Book

So many more artists to show you this week and I'm running out of days! So here, in brief, are a bunch of the better ones, beginning with Grattan Condon (1887-1966). Condon was a student of Walter Biggs and a regular contributor to the Saturday Evening Post and Ladies Home Journal, among many others.

Cleveland Woodward (1900-1986) - a student of Charles Hawthorne, Woodward eventually went into teaching himself.

Benton Clark (1895-1964) first illustrated for Liberty magazine in 1927 and subsequently for all the major magazines. He was the older brother of the illustrator Matt Clark (1903-1972).

Brendan Lynch, about whom I could find no information.

Finally, the two Raymonds -- Raymond Thayer (1886-1995)...

... and Raymond Sisley. Sisley was actually the pen name of Herbert Morton Stoops (1888-1948), who had a long association with Blue Book as a cover artist as well. I found a great website about Sisley/Stoops here.

Are you beginning to see a pattern? while Blue Book may have provided a training ground for the young Austin Briggs and some others, it was also where older illustrators went to fade away when their styles no longer suited the ever-changing tastes of the major magazines' audiences. This is not to take anything away from them. As you can see from this week's examples, the quality of their work was excellent - and Blue Book's readers loved them.

But in January of 1952, the editors of Blue Book jettisoned all of these artists in an effort to catch up with the times. Tomorrow, a look at the new Blue Book - and some interesting reader reactions.


  1. You're "running out of days"...

    That shows something about the prodigiousness of your protean blog.

  2. Hey, there are so many great artists who worked on Blue Book, I don't think you should limit yourself to a number of days. Please revisit this topic! The work of Herbert Morton Stoops alone would be fodder for a great week of examination!

  3. So true, Duane. I will revisit the Blue Book artists some time soon... but I only have a few issues so unfortunately there won't be a whole week on Stoops or anyone else from me. Sorry 'bout that :^(

  4. Great to see some Blue Book coverage!

  5. Anonymous4:01 PM

    Stoops was married to my great grandmother. When he died, my grandfather became the owner of several large charcoal sketches. When my grandfather passed, they were given to me. 10 of them are hanging in my home in Los Angeles. I'm not sure why I felt it necessary to say this... just that no one seems to know him anymore and I wanted someone to know that his beautiful work is still around.