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, March 28, 2012

Brian O'Hanlon

Little is known about Brian O'Hanlon. He was a painter and illustrator whose career seems to have extended over at least 55 years. A search of auction records reveals a number of oil paintings and watercolours have been sold over the past 15 or so years the earliest being a watercolour of Crookston Castle, built in the Pollok district of Glasgow in around 1400AD. This was dated 1931.

The most recent dated work is from 1988. This later work, in oil, is primarily of rural scenes — fields of poppys, river estuaries, the Fenlands. One painting is described as looking through the window of a fisherman's cottage out onto a beach, possibly Aldeburgh. Aldeburgh is a Suffolk coastal town about half-way between Lowestoft in the north and Felixstowe in the south.

Armed with this connection to Suffolk, it is possible that O'Hanlon is (or was) Brian Francis O'Hanlon, whose death, at the age of 77, was registered in Bury St Edmunds in 1991. Brian Francis O'Hanlon was born 23 June 1914. The only other official trace would appear to be a marriage (in Croydon, Surrey) in 1944 to Margaret Watson. I believe he was born in Scotland, which would make sense if the teenage O'Hanlon was painting Scottish scenary in the 1930s. This should be considered speculation only.

In the late 1960s, O'Hanlon would appear to have been producing romantic illustrations in colour for women's magazines and at least one cover for June and School Friend (1968). How extensive O'Hanlon's contributions in these areas were is unknown.

Examples of Brian O'Hanlons artwork can be found for sale at the Illustration Art Gallery.


  1. I know a great deal about Brian as he was my maternal grandfather. I have 3 of his paintings hanfing on the walls of this room.

    1. Dear Sophie, I have a picture painted by your grandfather. It is a portrait of my father. I assume they worked for the Ordinance Survey together in Southampton during the war. It's a great picture and I really treasure it. I would like to know a bit more about Brian and what he went on to do. Best wishes, Sarah.

  2. Hi Sophie,

    It would be great to know more about his career. Perhaps you could drop me a line ( At the very least it would be nice to know whether I identified the right person.

  3. Hi Sophie. I am Doris Curd's grandson. She was a painter who was a good friend of Brian O'Hanlon. One of his paintings has been given to me with instructions to try to return it to you. Please could you contact me to arrange for me to return it to you. Best regards Neil Wilson

  4. Hi Neil. I am Maureen Clare, Brian and Margaret O'Hanlon's daughter. Sad to hear of your bereavement but interested to hear that Doris wanted his painting to be returned to us. Please ring me on 07504308776. Maureen

  5. Maureen,
    We have a picture of your Dad'in our living room we have it for over 30 years. Bryan had a small caravan in our back field, he used it to paint in. The PICTURE IS OF SOUTHWOLD.
    Sally and Roland Nice