Day One, Week Two

Was surfing around to find a placeholder to celebrate the week of the history of illustration genres (from this British site>>)
with Vin Di Fate. Vin was really great with a cultural overview--pointing up political, arts, celebrity, music, space exploration, nuclear/ technology in a chronological context. He set the stage for the discussion this week to delve into all sorts of pulp topics--which promises great hilarity and new insight into these historic genres and how to approach them now.This is not my world so there is a lot to learn. All of it is new. Should be wonderful.

The Lewins dove in and gently took us through a review of "how to" along with stories and approaches as it relates to the zillions of excellent books they have done. They are so engaged and kind--helping each student on his/her way to accomplishing a 32 pp. comp at the end of the week.They truly love their work, the process and creation--with a direct point of view that allows them the space to say no (an inspiration for me). New for me is the book real estate devoted to the title and half title page (3 pps of the 32 that is dedicated to intro--and not directly the story). I have collaped the "What is Pink" poem by Christina Rossetti along with the color detail spreads showing butterflies, bugs, flowers, grasses, leaves, ferns, birds, fish and such in a "find it" format. Have some work to do tonight. I am working small, and plan on scanning them in as we go through it. More tomorrow.

Murray introduced us to the Cooper Studio at lunch. He took us through the wonderful story of how he got the job at the studio--the sheer intimidation of the waiting room filled with starched men with wingtip shoes and leather portfolios with our Mentor arriving in a baseball jacket with a red rope portfolio with his drawings glued to board. It was a quick in/quick out for the other illustrators and Murray rolled in to meet Charles Cooper who silently reviewed his work and then, reviewed it again...offering Murray a space and representation--and a start at the foremost studio at the time. The artists at the Cooper Studio were compadres/family supporting and teaching each other, working on the jobs brought in by the sales staff-- The key take away was this was the finishing school for Murray, a place for him to grow as an artist and professional--working cheek to jowl with Joe deMers, Jon Whitcomb, Bernie di Andrea, Joe Bowler, Coby Whitmore, Bob Jones, Herb Tauss and many many more. I had put Haddon Sundbloom into the Cooper group and was corrected by my mentor and member of the Cooper Studios that Sundbloom (known for his Coca Cola Santas) never was part of Cooper. From Murray: "Coby Whitmore met him in Chicago and Coby was his apprentice and driver.He also gave a copy of "The Art Spirit" to Coby." That is the link.Another interesting point was that Murray was the decorative illustrator amongst all these "kiss kiss" boys. We were chatting about this in the car back to the dorm tonight--with my companions wishing that the studio system was still in place--allowing an apprenticeship program for the new illustrators and as a centralized way to promote and build a business.

Good news! I just got a note from Communications Arts!
This message is intended for Q. Cassetti at Luckystone Partners.
Congratulations! One of your entries has been selected by the 2008
jury to appear in Design Annual 49, the November 2008 issue of Communication

And that piece was the Chicken Chokers CD cover ( in the audio/visual packaging category). Guess where the Carol Elizabeth Jones album is going!