Blogpost#1 Cipe Pineles

Cipe Pineles was born in 1908 in Vienna. She came to the US when she was 13 and she attended Bay Ridge High School in Bay Ridge High School in Brooklyn and later on she got a Tiffany Foundation Scholarship to Pratt Institute.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Cipe Pineles

Pineles had a nearly 60-year-long career in design despite the sexism in the industry during her time. She worked for Contempora for two years then became an assistant to M.F.A Agha, the art director of Conde Nast Publications. From that one assistant job, she gained her experiences and soon became the art director for Glamour, a publication with mainly targets young women which allowed Pineles to develop her own unique style through various uses of image and type. Later on, she became the Art Director at Seventeen and Charm. In 1961 to 1972, she worked as a graphic design consultant for the Lincoln Center for Performing Arts in New York, supervising the creation of branding and marketing materials for the institutions. In 1943, Pineles became the first female member of the Art Directors Club. She was later inducted into the Art Directors Club Hall of Fame in 1975 and she also the only female member of the Alliance Graphique Internationale. In 1984, she was honoured by the Society of Publication Designers with Herb Lubalin Award. She also received the AIGA Medal in 1996.

Out of Pineles’s contributions, she was considered as the first person to bring fine art into mainstream, mass-produced media. She commissioned fine artist such as Ad Reinhardt and Andy Warhol to illustrate articles during her time at Seventeen. Bringing different things to the attention and interest of the young public like food, household items, furniture, etc. She also brought more playful typography and visual puns to her designs.

Her work contributed to the effort to redefine the style of women’s magazines. Her efforts also contributed to the feminist movement by helping to continue to change women’s roles in society. Pineles repeatedly broke the glass ceiling in the design field.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Cipe Pineles

As for Pineles personal life, she was married to two notable designers. She and William Golden were married from 1939 until his death in 1959. Then in 1961, she married Will Burtin until his death in 1972.

Blogpost#5: Postwar Prospertie​s-Mauric​e Sendak


Maurice Sendak borns in Brooklyn, New York, his dad and mom are Jewish immigrants. Sendak described his childhood as a ” terrible situation” due to the death of a family member during the Holocaust which exposed him at a young age to the concept of mortality and effects his creative style. Sendak drew inspiration and influences from a vast number of painter, musician, and authors but one of his earliest influences was actually his father, Philip Sendak. According to him, his father would tell him tales from the Torah and young Sendak would frequently be sent home after retelling his father’s ” softcore Bible tales” at school.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho maurice sendak
Where the wild things are

In 1956, Sendak published Kenny’s Window, the first children’s book he both wrote and illustrated himself. Before long, he turned the children’s book world upside down with his 1963 masterpiece Where the Wild Things Are. Sendak captured the public’s imagination with this tale of a boy’s journey into a strange land inhabited by grotesque yet appealing monsters.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho maurice sendak i eat you whole
Where the wild thing are

Sendak’s dark, moody illustrations were a shocking contrast to the usually light and happy fare found in a typical children’s book of the time. The main character Max, like many of Sendak’s protagonists, acted like a real child, not some idealized version of youth.

“In plain terms, a child is a complicated creature who can drive you crazy,” Sendak once said in an interview. “There’s a cruelty to childhood, there’s anger. And I did not want to reduce Max to the trite image of the good little boy that you find in too many books.” Where the Wild Things Are earned Sendak a Caldecott Medal, a special honour for children’s book illustration.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho let the rumpus begin

During his long career, Sendak produced more than 50 books, including In the Night Kitchen(1970) and Outside Over There (1981). He also used his creative talents in a number of other forms, collaborating with Carole King for the musical Really Rosie. Sendak designed sets and costumes for stage versions of his books and other productions as well. In early 1980s, he created the sets for several operas, including Mozart’s Magical Flute at the House Grand Opera.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Really Rosie. sendak

Kết quả hình ảnh cho maurice sendak in the night kitchen

Personally, I really Sendak, his works really stand out from other illustrators and he had a strong idea of his own message through illustration. Sendak art style is charming and I think the kid would be drawn to his style too. He was ahead of his time and decided to do something bold and interesting. I love his children book and if I was young and I got to read ” Where the wild things are” it would leave a significant impact on me. The story was simple and short but it felt like a real child which is the reason why people came to like it.

Blogpost#4 The Golden Age Part II – Gil Elvgren

Kết quả hình ảnh cho gil elvgren portrait
Gil Elvgren portrait

Gil Elvgren was born in St. Paul, Minnesota. He went to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts for the short period of time and then changed to the American Academy of Art. After graduating, he joined the stable of artists at Stevens and Gross, Chicago’s most prestigious advertising agency. During this time he got the chance to learn from the famous illustrator Haddon Sundblom, who gained his popularity from his Coca Cola Santas. Working in Sundblom’s shop, Elvgren contributed to various Coca-Cola ads himself.

Station WOW

In 1937, Gil began painting calendar pinups girl for Louis F. Dow, one of America’s leading publishing companies, during which time he created about 60 works. These pinups girls illustrations art easily to recognize because they are printed version with Elvgren’s signature. In 1944, he was approached by Brown and & Bigelow to work for them as a staff artist which meant his work would be in more or less direct competition with other big names in the field. The firm offered him $1,000 per piece, which was more than what Dow was paying him. Elvegren signed a contrast with Brown & Bigelow in which he has to produce twenty calendar girls each year, ranging from cowgirls of the golden west to sultry sirens of the Riviera.

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Louis f. dow calendar illustration by Gil Elvgren
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Swingin Sweetie, Brown & Bigelow calendar illustration by Gil Evgren

In 1951, Evgren salary arrangements with Brown & Bigelow changed, instead of $ 1,000 per piece, they paid him $ 2,500 per piece. With the amount of money he got from his magazine illustration and numerous national advertising accounts, he and his family moved from Chicago to the suburb of Winnetka. He started to hire a full-time assistant to help with photographing the models, forming sets with various props to portray different subjects and preparing his art tools. Having his own studio at home help Evgren work more efficiently. Eventually, after 30 years working with Brown & Bigelow Evgren retired and moved to Florida.

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Splendid View

In order to create these pin-up girl pieces, Elvgren had to plan each of them carefully. Beginning with an idea, he would develop the visual situation and then select a suitable model for the specific setting. Then he would choose the outfit, the background, the props and the liting and finally, he would take some pictures as the reference for his piece.

My opinion :

To be honest, in my opinion, pin-up girl illustrators kind of have really similar styles. He did have a successful career and he had a really solid skill set to make these girls look as lively as possible. His colour palette is always warm, vibrant to look at but other than that his art doesn’t leave a strong impression for me.

Blog post#3 The Golden Age Part I – Neysa McMein

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Neysa Moran McMein photograph

Neysa Moran McMein was an American Illustrator and portrait painter who studied at The School of The Art Institute of Chicago and Art Students League of New York. She started her career as an illustrator, during World War I, she travelled across France entertaining military troops and made posters to support the war effort. Through McMein entire career she was a successful illustrator, she would work for great publication such as McCall’s, The Saturday Evening Post, and Collier’s. Moreover, she was also a successful portrait painter, she would often take commission from famous celebrities and writers.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Neysa McMein
Cover illustration for Mc Call’s

McMein was born in Quincy, Illinois on January 24, 1888. She was the daughter of Harry Moran and Isabelle Parker McMein. McMein had many talents, she knew how to sing, to act and to draw. After graduating from Quincy High School, she attended The School of the Art Institute in Chicago. In 1913 she went to New York City and attended the Art Students League for a few months. After one year she sold her first artwork to the Boston Star and she also did the cover for the Saturday Evening Post.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Neysa McMein the Saturday Evening Post. 1915
McMein illustration for 1917 The Saturday Evening Post cover

Her warm pastel drawing for strong American female was highly popular and brought her many commissions. During World War I she drew posters for the U.S and French governments, McMein spent six months in France as a lecturer and entertainer. From 1923 through 1937 she provided all the artwork for McCall’s covers. She also supplied work to McClure’s, Liberty, Woman’s Home Companion, Collier’s, Photoplay, and other magazines and she also produced advertising graphics for products such as Palmolive soap and Lucky Strike cigarette. General Mills commissioned her to create the image of Betty Crocker.

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Neysa McMein Lucky Strike cigarettes
Lucky Strike Illustration

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Neysa McMein betty cocker
Betty Crocker Illustration

In addition to her highly successful career as an illustrator and designer McMein also had a great social life, she was a regular member of the Algonquin Round Table set. In 1923 she married John C.Baragwanath and they had a satisfy open relationship. Unfortunately, the popularity of her style decided during the late 1930s so McMein started to focusing more on portraiture using pastel and oil paint.

More of McMain works:

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Kết quả hình ảnh cho Neysa McMein work

My personal thought about the illustrator:

McMain was a strong independent woman since she was so talented she got the chance to have way more interesting experiences than other women during that period. She had a successful career, producing numerous illustration for popular magazines and she was able to stand out among other male illustrators. Artistic wise I think she had an excellent set of skill but she is limited to portraiture only since I can not find any full body scale illustration from McMein.


Blog post#2: Illustration’s Early Masters – Virginia Frances Sterrett

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Virginia portrait

Virginia Frances Sterrett was born in Chicago, Illinois, in 1900. She is known to be an introverted child which means she would rather be in her own world of imagination and drawing than interaction with other children in school. When her father passed away, she and her family moved to Missouri where their relatives were. Later on, when she was 13, she won several awards at Kansas State Fair that event had encouraged Virginia to focus even more on Drawing. Two years later, her family moved back to Chicago where she went to high school with the goal to study art but she soon attended the Art Institute of Chicago and she also received a full scholarship. Unfortunately, Virginia mom became ill one year later which forced her to quit studying to get a job and support her family.

old french fairytales virginia frances sterrett
One page of Virginia’s illustration in the Old French Fairytales

It was not long before her own health began to fail; she was diagnosed with tuberculosis. Her first commission came in 1919. She was commissioned by Penn Publishing Company to illustrate the Comptesse de Ségur’s Old French Fairy Tales. She was 19 and received $500 for the eight watercolors and 16 pen and ink drawings, with a supplemental $250 for a colored drawing for the cover and ink drawings for the end papers and boards. This was quickly followed by another commission for Tanglewood Tales from the same publisher, Penn Publishing Company.

Illustration from Tanglewood Tales by Virginia Frances Sterrett (1920)
Illustration from Tanglewood Tales by Virginia Frances Sterrett

Illustration from Tanglewood Tales by Virginia Frances Sterrett (1920)
Illustration from Tanglewood Tales by Virginia Frances Sterrett 

In 1923, the family moved to the warmer climate of southern California, making their home in Altadena, nestled at the foot of the San Gabriel mountains just north of Pasadena. There was a slight improvement in her health, but it didn’t last, and she entered Compton Sanitorium. Her health was now curtailing her work, and she could only draw for a short time each day. She started a new series of illustrations for Arabian Nights but the declining state of her health, it took three years to complete. The Arabian Nights, her last published works, are considered her masterpiece. 

Aladdin Greeted the Princess with Joy by Virginia
Aladdin Made His Way to the Sultan’s Palace by Virginia

In 1930, Virginia began work on her last commission, a series of illustration for Myths and Legends. This commission was never completed; her health took a turn for the worse and she died on June 8, 1931. She was 31 years old. 

Kết quả hình ảnh cho Virginia Frances Sterrett
Illustration from Old French Fairy Tales by Virginia Frances Sterrett 

  My personal opinion:

I can see that Virginia artworks somewhat reflect her personality, the mood in her artwork is always calm and mystery. Everything she drew is style like from human figure to natural elements such as the ocean wave, trees. She has a unique way of seeing a world and to see that in her art is incredible. I love the way she used cool tone for the background warm tone in her illustration series for the Old French Fairy Tales. Moreover, most details in the background often rendered with one specific curve which made the figure stand out more. In addition, I admired the fact that Virginia has gone through so may hardship but she still able to produce such amazing work until the end of her life.


Blog post# 1 Beginning to the Golden Age – Alphonse Mucha

  Alphonse Maria Mucha was born in the town of Ivancice, Moravia. During his early age, Mucha developed his passion for art which leaded him to pursue illustration later on. At first, he worked as a decorative painter in Moravia, mostly painting theatrical scenery and then he became the leader in a Viennese theatrical design company while continuing to perfect his art skills.

Alphonse Mucha portrait

In 1881, Mucha came back to Moravia and he got hired by Count Karl Khuen of Mikulov to finish several murals for the Hrusovany Emmahof Castle. Noticing how talented Mucha was Count Karl Khen offer to sponsor Mucha’s training at the Munchin Academy of Fine Arts. After that, he moved to Paris in 1887 and continued his studies at Julian Academy and Colarossi Academy while also producing magazines and illustrations. Mucha volunteer to produce a lithographed for the play Gismonda by Victorien Sardou and it happen to turn into an overnight sensation which formed the new artistic style and its creator to the public. The actor for the play was so satisfied with the success of Mucha’s poster that she signed a six years contrast with Mucha.

View of Mucha’s murals

Amants - Theatre De La Renaissance 1895
Amants – Theatre De La Renaissance 1895

Mucha was known for his flurry painting, poster, advertisement, and book illustrations. Moreover, his designs for jewellery, carpets, wallpaper, and theatre were also quite popular. He produced works focusing in illustrate beautiful woman wear flowing Neoclassical outfit, these girls often surrounded by flowers and delicate decorations. His use of pastel colours helps him stand out from others illustrators who produce contemporary posters. Even though Mucha was famous for his commercial art, he aims to produce art with the purpose of communicating spiritual messages. Mucha wanted to concentrate on projects what would honour art and his birthplace.

 More example of Mucha’s works:

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Weather illustration by Mucha
Alfons Mucha 1860 - 1939, 'Slav Epic' 1910 - 1928:
3 'The Introduction of the Slavonic Liturgy' - 'Praise the Lord in Your Native Tongue' 1912.
Egg tempera and oil on canvas, 610 x 810 cm, unsigned.
National Gallery Prague, Jklamo 2011 commons.wikimedia
The Introduction of the Slavonic Liturgy
Image result for Couverture Pour L'Illustration mucha
Couverture Pour L’Illustration

My opinion about Mucha:

I love Mucha art styles, he did many woman illustration, but each of them has different personalities, and all the poses just fit perfectly in every piece. Moreover, he did a fantastic job of texture rendering. His four weathers piece the flowers and the flowy dress look incredibly natural.

He was a successful commercial artist but I think he also struggled a lot with that title since he wants to focus more on bigger and more meaningful projects. I am really interested in his life story because it is what I expected from an illustrator life, you might love to draw certain topics but since it is your job, you possibly work a lot with projects you not really fond of.


The cover rationale


     After looking through other people spread for the book me and my group deiced that we want to make a more dynamic and interesting design rather than an an academic cover. We deiced that we want to add bit and pieces of information on our cover some how to attract the reader and we finally came up with  a design of a tea cup with spread from the back to the front cover. More over, we also felt that history is kind of a mess so we go with a more messy approach with an explosion of object we think is important in history such as the pyramid, the first camera, printing press and the teddy bear which is more like a funny factor that we just want to throw in. Since we want to emphasize this is a tea cup we went with a dark brown color which I think should be lighter but overall I happy with the final product. I would mark myself 8.5





History spread #3 rationale


          I chose to make a spread comparing the style between Bauhaus and Art Decor. When I did my research, I found that Bauhaus and Art have two completely different style and beside producing furniture they also make art and others object so I corporate them to my spread to emphasize the differences between the two movement. I also attempted to suggest the differences by using two type of typography, while ” Bauhaus” is bold lettering with heavy outline, ” Art Deco” is more decorative. Also, the two-chair image which I used are two great examples of Bauhaus and Art decor product. While the Wassily chair is quite modern looking, the Dragon chair is more complicate with dragon heads carve to the chair handle and the one common point about the two chair is their design are both influenced by something else. Finally, I highlight key works to compare and contrast between the two movement.

             I quite satisfy with the final product since I think that I had convey all the important information so I would give myself 8.5.



Blogpost#10 Contemporary & Post Modernism

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Ivan portrait

               Ivan Alifan Jdanov was born in 1989 in Russia. He graduated from the OCAD University in Toronto, Canada with a Bachelor in Fine Arts in Drawing and Painting. Recently he participates in the LA International art pair. He is famous for his process of hardening paint with wax and using cake icing tools to pipe paint onto his canvas.

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Ice cream sketch – I love his technique with the cake pipping tools and in some of his painting he made paint flower with the tools and sticked it to the canvas.

                 Ivan Alifan’s work often depicts human body to portrait the meanings of consumption about sexual taboos. He uses shocks tactics and provocative topic, where the erotic subtext is used to stroke the viewer and force them to examine their relationship to sexuality, questioning their prejudices about sex.  To be more specific, he would paint male of female heads, busts or bodies which are covered with dripping white- pastel liquid. He intentionally forms an exotic, explicit and even strange composition. Ivan’s palette consists of mostly turquoise and picks which resemble the baroque lavishness and decadent delight.


            Ivan said that:

             ” Art is beyond an image of perception and creativity. Art is part of the past present, future, where one can interpret their own view. Painting allows me as an artist to express my strengths or my vulnerability. Each brushstroke builds up a story, a life and, a passion.” 

            Ivan had always fascinated with the glossy surface of porcelain figures and marble statues. His current art style form during one time when he asked his friend to participate in a photo shoot where he would pour a bucket full of gesso over her. Ivan does not want to stick with the traditional brown painting method; he wants to represent the human flesh realistically to create images filled with sexual ambiguity.  Later on, he started to experiment with slime, milk-based creams and non-toxic paint.

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The hand studyImage result for ivan alifan a study of hand

                  One of Ivan famous series is ”  The hand study” series which he aimed to portrait female intimacy. He did not portrait it as a sexual act but more like a moment of enlightenment, a pure bliss. Ivan wanted to accentuate the profundity of the female pleasure and self-awareness regardless of the omnipresent male gaze. This series of beautiful art hit you when you see it with fantastic work of illustrating delicate woman hand realistically. It might be the best hand paintings I have ever seen.

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2D Love – I think this painting is an accurate depiction of people with anime obsession, having an unhealthy life style . The way he handling paint looks phenomenal.

Source : I believe art is sex and sex is art’: Step into the dripping pastel world of Ivan Alifan.

                                    A study of Hands Like No Other, By Ivan Alifan.










Blogpost#9 Abtract Expressionism & Pop Art


                     Roy Lichtenstein pulled off his idea of irony comic illustration with one of his first popular art piece of Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck on a wooden jetty. Donald Duck raises his fishing rod and shouts out: ” Look Mickey, I’ve hooked a big one”. This painting somehow challenged  the Abstract Expressionism artists which was dominated American art during that time.

Look Mickey, I’ve hooked a big one

                    Lichtenstein was born in New York City, he showed his artistic really early. Lichtenstein drew, painted and sculpted as a teenager, and he also spent lots of his time in the American Museum of Natural History and the Museum of Modern Art. Later on, he spent sometimes in Europe but then returned home due to his father illness.

Wonder Woman Comic Art

                   Lichtenstein was identified with Pop art, he interested in industrial processes and mass consumerism. He form his career on creating simple works that appropriated from comic books, advertisements and pulp fiction, isolating, cropping and enlarging selected elements to form power-full composition. More over, he also imitate the crude printing processes of newspaper reproduction as you can see with the dots on his art works. Lichtenstein creates about more than 5000 painting, prints, drawings, sculptures, murals and other objects.

Drowning Girl (1963). On display at the Museum of Modern Art, New York

                 To be more specific, Lichtenstein’s works based on enlarged panels from comic books. Lichtenstein himself said ” I am nominally copying, but I am really restating the copied thing in other term. In doing that, the original acquires a totally different texture. It isn’t thick or thin brushstrokes, it’s dots and flat colours and unyielding lines”. He would took a tiny picture, smaller than the palm of the hand, printed in four colour inks on newsprint and blew it up to the conventional size and finished it by painting on canvas. He elevated comic art to something you would see in a gallery.


                    His popularity reached it peak during the 1960s with Pop painting, he gravitated toward what he would refer as ” dumbest” or ” worst” visual item he could fins and then he would attempt to improve it. Paraphrasing, particularly the paraphrasing of despised images had become a unique trait ofLichtenstein art. People love his convention or permeated art, they called his works ” a purely American mythological subject matter”.

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Lichtenstein’s Bedroom at Arles (1992)

          My comment on Liechtenstein’s art: His art really catch my eyes with the vibrant palette and interesting texture. Unlike the other, his creativity is about seeing a poetical image and elevate it. When I first look at his art, I immediately think about all those meme picture since his art tend to be zoom in to a girl face with emotional face expression.

Image result for Roy Lichtenstein meme

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