Sunday 16 August 2009

i'm reading the big Taschen book on the great pin-up artist Gil Elvgren that was one of their 25th anniversary editions last year.
"...he had a studio apprentice named Bobby Toombs, who went on to become a recognized artist in his own right... He said that Elvgren not only taught him the handling of paints and various shortcuts that would help when working to deadlines, but also showed him how to approach a given assignment in a properly thoughtful manner. Toombs said, "Naturally the color values were a major part of the learning process, but with Gil Elvgren by your side, you felt as if you could do anything. He would pick up a brush and make it dance all over the canvas. it was like magic watching him paint, back in those good old days."
I like the way in his paintings there is usually some little unexpected bend in the flesh that shows he was looking closely at a live model, the kind of thing you can't invent or fake. Here's a great Great page of Elvgren model ref photos.

I'm always amused to be reminded how the publisher of a notably comprehensive series of artist monographs on one hand and 'The second most expensive book in publishing history' on the other, started out:
"TASCHEN'S Great Adventure began back in 1980 when eighteen-year-old opened a shop in his native Cologne, Germany, to market his massive comics collection. Within a year he bagan publishing catalogues promoting his wares, but it wasn't until 1984 that his first art-book breakthrough occurred; he purchased 40,000 remainder copies of a Magritte book printed in English, reselling them for a fraction of their original price... Twenty five years after he opened his little comics shop, Taschen has grown into one of the most successful and unique publishers in the global market, publishing an eclectic variety of books for people of all tastes and budget ranges, distributed worldwide in over twenty languages."



Blogger Hayley Campbell said...

I was marveling at the lovely squidgy fleshy bits poking out here and there in a book of Robert Maguire's covers (Dames, Dolls and Gun Molls) only last week.

16 August 2009 at 07:42:00 GMT-5  

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