at the Wall Street Journal

all images, Kevin Sprouls

a card I was presented with on my Birthday, mid-80’s, by “Ginny the Chartist”. The dogs were labeled (libeled?) as my protege’s at that time. I still cherish this witty artefact.

This short blog entry presents a slice of my Wall Street Journal history. There will be many to follow, no doubt. Since the earliest days of my tenure there, and with the establishment of the new portrait style, a demand rose for more art work in the paper. Bear in mind that, back in my early years, ca. 1980’s, photography as such was restricted to “only if you must” usage. I recall the edit page running a small photo of the crash site at Chappaquiddick, by way of presenting evidence! And so, I was asked to help induct, and train, other talented people in the craft of producing wsj hedcuts and other diverse line-art illustrations that would enhance the graphic quality of our paper. The characters tagged above represented our crew of illustrators at the time, still dear, if distant, friends.

Yours, with my one-year old son, Brendan. 1983-4. I had the corner, gunslinger’s position in the art dept. space of that time, at 22 Cortlandt St., NYC.

I could (and will in future) go on quite a bit about times more formative in the life of this department, but will restrict myself to a few of my art samples of this period, as follows…

The portrait of a pioneering Conductor of this period, Judith Somogi.

I used to wear one of these devices… the Journal wrote about the product, new at the time.

This was for a front page human interest story about the Hutterites. As I recall, in some ways similar to the Amish. Industrious, enjoying the simple pleasures of life, etc. This particular angle showing their handmade attire. Seems a tad non-mainstream for the #1 financial rag in the nation. Must give the editors ( and the women as well ) credit, I say.

An olympiad, Curt White. note the surreptitious signature, bottom left. I was always looking for opportunities to slip my name into the paper, and was very often successful at it (for what it’s worth).

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About Kevin Sprouls

Kevin Sprouls, Creator of the Wall Street Journal stipple hedcut portrait style. Sprouls introduced the hallmark portrait style to the Wall Street Journal in 1979. Between 1979 and 1987, Kevin worked on staff for the paper, creating illustrations and training artists in the style. He currently is the main illustrator for Worth magazine. His pen is housed in the Newseum in Washington, D.C.

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