These things can get a little too self aggrandizing sometimes, something I really don’t normally do but I guess in some ways I’m proud when I go out to California and come back with a win. Anyway, I’ve been wanting to post other artists work, especially deceased ones. So here’s a start. Mr. Dean Cornwell, whom I’ve mentioned, was an illustrator extroardinaire and student of Howard Pyle or Harvey Dunn, I’m not sure which. He was a brilliant composer of a scene and since most of his work was editrial in nature, the objects in his scenes were people doing things. He was a first rate story teller who always looked for a new vantage point and a unique point of view. Case in point is this little gem sent to me by a guy who’s been collecting D.C. print samples.
And when we are talking about composition, what are we really talking about? Division of space and how the eye flows through the picture. Eye flow comes sometimes in patterns, some simple, some complex. This one is along the lines of the “s” or river composition (See Edgar Paynes Compostions in outdoor painting) . The other half of this is creating a variety of dominant and subordinate elements, a hierarchy, throughout so your eye knows where to start and where to finish. Pretty clear to me where I’m starting and where I’m ending up. And he did this with just two colors (plus white) some kind of veridian and, I don’t know, tar maybe. Dominant element: dead girl, up the dress to their two faces (focal point) and up through the guy to the boys looking helpless over the dead guy in the background and back to the dress because you can’t resist it. Damn good stuff.