Illustration Art Gallery

The very best from the wide, sometimes overlooked, world of illustration art, including original artwork for book illustrations and covers, comic books and comic strips, graphic novels, magazines, film animation cels, newspaper strips, poster art, album covers, plus superb fine art reproductions and high quality art prints.

Our gallery brings together artists from all over the world and from many backgrounds, including fantasy, horror, romance, science fiction, education, sport, history, nature, technology, humour, glamour, architecture, film & tv, whimsy, even political satire and caricature.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bambos Georgiou

Bambos Georgiou was born around 1960. Of Greek descent, and speaking only Greek, he has said that it was the discovery of comics at the age of four that helped him learn English, although this form of education was not appreciated by some. One English teacher was thoroughly frustrated that he was always reading comics and his collection - with TV21 being his comic of choice - was thrown out by his mother. This only led to him becoming more determined to create his own comics.

In the mid-1980s he could be found contributing strips ('Ratman') to Paul Duncan's Arkensword fanzine and, before long, he became a prolific contributor - lettering and inking especially - for Marvel UK, Fleetway, Fat Man Press and Panini UK, as well as a cartoonist, usually signing his work with the abbreviated 'Bambos'.

His comic strips have included 'Blimey... It's Slimer' for The Real Ghostbusters and It's Wicked! in the late 1980s, as well as inking Brian Williamson and Dave Elliott on 'The Real Ghostbusters' for the former. His inking was to to be found in a number of Marvel UK's comic book titles in the early 1990s, including Knights of Pendragon (inking Gary Erskine, Phil Gascoine and Martin Griffiths), Death's Head II (inking Liam Sharp) and Motormouth & Killpower (inking Cam Smith). He has worked on various Transformers titles, including Fleetway's 1994 Transformers: Generation 2 (inking Robin Smith) and the 2003 Panini UKTransformers Armada (for the most part inking Andrew Wildman).

Over the years, Bambos has been involved with dozens of other characters, including Spider-Man, Action Man, Rugrats, Bugs Bunny, The Flintstones, Sonic the Hedgehog, Doctor Who, Tom and Jerry, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Shrek and Wallace and Gromit.

Examples of artwork by Bambos Georgiou can be found for sale here.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Frank Brangwyn

Frank Brangwyn was something of an artistic jack-in-the-box, estimated to have produced some 12,000 artistic works in a working career that spanned 65 years and a wide range of media, from stained glass windows and glassware to ceramics and furniture. He also painted murals on buildings, painted in oils, watercolours and gouache, made etchings and wood engravings and was a lithographer. His work ranged from small woodcuts to a series of murals that were originally intended to be placed in the Royal Gallery at the House of Lords in Westminster but were considered "too colourful and lively" for the location. The 16 large works, painted between 1925 and 1932 and covering some 3,000 square feet, became known as the British Empire Panels and are now housed in the Brangwyn Hall, Swansea.

Frank William Brangwyn was born Guillaume François Brangwyn in Bruges, Belgium, on 12 May 1867. Frank's father, William Curtis Brangwyn, was an ecclesiastical architect who had moved to Bruges to paint murels and frescoes for Belgian churches as well as designing several buildings and reconstructing others (such as the church of Sint-Andries). Brangwyn did not receive any formal artistic training; instead, his father sent him to practice drawing at the South Kensington Museum where he met Harold Rathbone and Arthur Heygate Mackmurdo, who both encouraged his work. Through Mackmurdo, Brangwyn was introduced to William Morris, who employed him as a glazier.

Brangwyn began to develop as a painter and his painting A Bit on the Esk was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1885. A passion for the sea led him to join the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve and he developed a good reputation for his seascapes and landscapes. His oil painting Burial at Sea (now in the Art Gallery and Museum, Glasgow) won a medal at the Paris Salon in 1891. Brangwyn travelled extensively and his first one-man show was entitled 'From Scheldt to Danube'.

Commercial illustrations for The Graphic expanded his audience and his reputation amongst the artistic community was high: he decorated the façade of the L'Art Nouveau gallery in Paris in 1895 and was one of the artists, along with Rodin and Whistler, invited to show his work at the first exhibition of the Vienna Secession group. Between 1902 and 1920 he executed a great many murals for buildings in London, Venice, Cleveland, Manitoba, Jefferson City, Leeds, Taormina (Sicily) and elsewhere. He was made an associate of the Royal Acaademy in 1904 and a member in 1919.

During the First World War, Brangwyn was an official war artist, designing many propaganda posters. After the war he was commissioned to produce a series of murals for the House of Lords, paid for by Lord Iveagh. The initial designs, depicting battle scenes, were thought too grim and Brangwyn started afresh, using vibrant colours to depict the achievements of Britain's colonies during the conflict. These were rejected by the Royal Fine Arts Commission and Brangwyn was understandably devastated.

After executing another large commission for the Rockefeller Center in New York, Brangwyn became more reclusive and pessimistic, a situation that had begun years earlier and contributed to by the death in 1924 of his wife, Lucy (née Ray, a nurse whom he had married in 1896). Brangwyn began to dispose of many of his possessions; over 400 pieces were gifted to Bruges in 1936 in order to establish a permanent museum in his native city; a substantial collection was also donated to the William Morris Museum, Walthamstow. A museum of Brangwyn and of de Belleroche was established at Orange, France, in 1947.

Brangwyn was knighted in 1941 and a major retrospective of his work was held at the Royal Academy in 1952 - the first living Academician to be so honoured. He died on 11 June 1956 at his home in Ditchling, Sussex, aged 89.

Examples of Brangwyn's work can be found for sale here.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Jim Baikie

Jim Baikie, born in the Orkney Islands, in 1940, served as a Corporal with the RAF in 1956-63 before joining a printing company. Baikie joined Morgan-Grampian studio as an artist in 1964 and was an illustrator for the National Savings Committee in 1965-66.

He began his career as a comic strip artist drawing for Fleetway Publications' girls' comics in the mid-1960s, producing romance and biographical strips (e.g. The Small Faces, The Herd) for Valentine. Over the next decade he drew strips for Lady Penelope, Look and Learn, TV 21 & Joe 90, June, Tammy, Sandie and House of Horror, his work including a brief run adapting Star Trek, drawing Doctor Who and Dan Dare for annuals and, in between, drawing 'Gymnast Jinty', 'The Reluctant Nurse' and 'No Time for Pat' amongst many other stories for girls. Baikie was one of the leading artists for Jinty in the late 1970s, his strips ranging from the bizarre 'Spell of the Spinning Wheel' (sports meets horror!) and the ecological SF of 'The Forbidden Garden'.

Baikie then made a name for himself in the pages of Look-In, drawing adaptations of Charlie's Angels, CHiPS, The Fall Guy and Terrahawks. At the same time he came to prominence in 2000AD with the Alan Moore-penned 'Skizz' and, in Warrior, the Steve Moore-penned 'Twilight World', which led to work for DC Comics in New York.

He has since drawn Batman, New Teen Titans, The Spectre and other major characters. Other notable strips by Baikie include 'New Statesmen' for Crisis in the UK, Star Wars: Empire's End for Dark Horse Comics and, more recently, 'The First American' in Alan Moore's Tomorrow Stories anthology.

Baikie has won both the 1983 S.S.I. Award as Best British Adventure Artist and the 2000 Eisner Award for his contributions to Tomorrow Stories.

Examples of Jim Baikies artwork for sale can be found here.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Gerritt Vandersyde

The oddly named Gerritt Vandersyde was a British artist of remarkable talent whose work appeared in advertising and on prints that were widely distributed through Boots and Woolworths. One of his prints has gained a small measure of fame as it was briefly featured in the background of Stanley Kubrik's A Clockwork Orange. The picture, a portrait entitled 'Nina', was a commercial success, although Vandersyde is said to have had little business sense and sold the copyrights on many of his most commercially popular paintings for only a few pounds.

Alfred Gerritt Vandersyde was born in Camberwell, London, on 9 January 1898, the son of Gerrit Willem Vandersyde, who (along with his younger sister) had been bought to England in the 1860s. Gerrit Willem had married Caroline Bell in 1888 and had seven children (six of them boys), Alfred being the fifth child.

Alfred was raised in Enfield and volunteered for the army at the outbreak of the First World War. He lied about his age in order to join the Army Service Corps. He was drafted to the Medical Corps, driving carriages for medics and caring for the horses, and served in Mesopotamia.

In 1918 he married Grace Collings in Hackney and had two children, Basil (b.1921) and Derek (b.1923). He was married a second time in 1942 to Dorothy Ellen Wood in Wandsworth and had two daughters, Wendy (b.1943) and Gillian (b.1947). The family lived at 4 Hepworth Road, Streatham, S.W.16, which is where Alfred died following a sudden heart attack on 10 November 1970.

Gerritt Vandersyde, as he signed his work, was tall (over 6' 4"). His advertising work included popular images for Ovaltine whilst his illustrations appeared in the London Illustrated News. In the 1960s he illustrated stories for books and for the magazine Once Upon a Time, drawing covers and illustrations on a range of subjects from young children to flamingos.

Examples of his artwork for sale can be found here.

Illustrated Books
My Farmyard Picture Book by Arthur Groom. London, Dean & Son, 1963.
Tiny's First A.B.C. and Counting Book. London, Dean & Son, 1964.
Dean's On the Farm Picture Books by Eunice Close. London, Dean & Son, 1965.
Little Poppet's Animal A.B.C. by Eunice Close. London, Dean & Son, 1965.
My A.B.C. and Counting Book by Eunice Close. London, Dean & Son, 1965.
Little Poppet Book of Road Safety by Kathleen Holroyd. London, Dean & Son, 1966.
Zoo Animals Picture Book by Aileen E. Passmore. London, Dean & Son, 1966.
A Picturebook of Prayers. London, Dean & Son, 1968.
Wonderful Stories Jesus Told by Elizabeth Ashley. London, Dean & Son, 1968.