Wednesday, December 29, 2010
R. B. Davis
It seems likely that he began drawing for boys' or girls' story papers during the war, or perhaps shortly after the war during the period of paper rationing when work was thin on the ground. Some of his earliest work is associated with boys' writer Edward R. Home-Gall as he illustrated covers for Home-Gall's Panmure Press publications and both of the author's collectable novels featuring The Human Bat. Around the same time he began working for the newly launched School Friend, drawing one of their most popular strips, 'Jill Crusoe'. Jill Blair was from a long line of castaways, although in this instance she had been travelling to Australia when the ship she was on was wrecked in the Indian Ocean; Jill found herself the lone, exhausted survivor on a small island that turns out to be far from deserted.
Davis also contributed to the girls' pocket libraries, beginning with covers for early issues of Schoolgirls' Picture Library beginning in 1957; he also provided interior artwork for Princess Picture Library, School Friend Picture Library and Schoolgirls' Picture Library (including two episodes of the popular Zanna jungle girl series).
He was to be associated with Treasure for almost the whole of the magazine's existence; towards the end of Treasure's run (it folded in 1971), he also began working for Look and Learn, his first work appearing in the 1960s but more regularly from 1970 and including the back cover feature, 'Life in Nature' in 1971.
He died in December 1998 in Alton, Hampshire.
can be found for sale here.