My art from The Wall Street Journal even these years after I left the paper, reaches many people.
“It was once my dream to be featured in the WSJ with (what I now know is) a hedcut portrait. That’s becoming less likely, but I see that it’s possible to commission that artwork!”
I received the above message from a fan today. Even with all the format changes that have happened at the WSJ, many people remain fascinated by the iconic look of the illustration style I introduced to the paper many years ago.
Today, I’ll share with you some of the group portraits I produced while I was at the Journal full-time. Let’s get started:
My Art from The Wall Street Journal: Group Portraits
These three ran in a full-column width. It was a challenge to fit all that detail into a small space. The column of those days was, I recall, 14 picas, or about 2 and a quarter inches.
These ladies were also in a full-column size. The story was about Hutterites, a sect or community similar to the Amish. The interesting thing about this image is the hand-made clothing. I had to give special attention to the patterned cloth. The background was painstakingly executed, too. It was fun having an actual job where I was allowed to draw all day!
I especially like drawing famous people. Their photos are usually professionally done, meaning they are posed and are well-lit. Lighting is critical for a good result in my illustrations. Here, we have composer Richard Wagner and Theater Director Patrice Chereau. I arranged them in such a way as to have them looking at each other.
Here are some politicians from the 1980’s. A Gang of Five. We did a lot of portraits of Washington types in those days.
My Art from The Wall Street Journal: Couple’s Portraits
A tricky thing it was to join two separate photos into a couple image. This illustration of two advertising executives was very successful, I think. The challenge is to get the size relationship of the two subjects to match, so that they appear to sit comfortably in the same space or frame.
Here is a double hedcut. I remember that the angle of this story was that the folks portrayed here were learning disabled. They must have been very successful to attract the Journal’s attention. You might see that I ’signed’ the art. Look closely…
My Art from The Wall Street Journal: Historical Portrait
Lastly, here’s a drawing that I created with a high level of detail. I felt it important to commemorate this important historical event, “The Big Three at Yalta”, signaling the end of World War Two, with particular focus:
Roosevelt was a dying man at this time. I gave a poetical touch by emphasizing his cigarette’s smoke, drifting gracefully into the heavens. It was a lot of drawing to fill in the background figures, and to differentiate the central trio from the rest of the crowd.
I hope you enjoyed this tour of my illustrations from my Wall Street Journal days. I’m happy to say that I am still carrying on in this worthy tradition today.