Sunday, June 7, 2015

Up from the Unconscious

Click on the images to enlarge.

The color illustrations that I've been using for the last ten cards or so were all taken from Palmer Cox's Brownies Yearbook, originally published in 1895. As far as I know, they represent the only non-commercial color illustrations that Cox ever created of his Brownie characters. I stress the non-commercial because the Brownies were among the very earliest characters ever licensed for use in the marketing and advertising of various products (the others were RF Outcoult's Buster Brown and The Yellow Kid). By far, the bulk of Cox's non-commercial Brownie illustrations were created in black-and-white lineart only.

There's just one color illustration from the Yearbook remaining: and from them on, barring possible use of advertising art for a card or two, I will be hand-coloring the illustrations myself.

This is a nightmare that I have been putting off as long as I possibly could. Yes, I've been coloring the "proverbs" cards (on the right) -- but these feature just one Brownie at a time. As you know, the typical Cox illustration features literally dozens  of figures. Goodness knows how long coloring them is going to take me! Like The Brownies often are themselves, I am heading into dangerous ground! Wish me luck! I'll be making every effort to color the individual Brownie characters in their proper costumes. 

-- Frede.