IDEA 22 Student

Henry Patrick Raleigh

1920-1940 The Golden Age Part 1 Lecture

Henry Patrick Raleigh was one of the highest paid illustrators in the country during his time. In 1925 an art critic proclaimed him “America’s greatest illustrator”.

Henry’s life started in Portland Oregon in 1880 and unfortunately started in grave poverty. He had to start working at the age of nine selling newspapers. Which is something that no one in North America can really fathom anymore. By 12 years old he had to drop out of school and started working on the docks in San Fransisco. This obvious negative was actually a huge positive in Raleigh’s life because working on these docks are what inspired his career. Henry would hear the magnificent tales that the sailors shared when they returned to port. Raleigh felt the need to begin sketching them and sharing these sketches with coworkers. Everyone was impressed with his drawing abilities and his boss actually ended up offering to pay his tuition to attend the Hopkins Academy in San Fransisco. Which is quite the story already, from day one having a hard rough poverty ridden life, to meeting an incredible group of people and having one person believe in you so much they sponser your talent! Is there a movie about him already?

A few years after graduating from the Hopkins Academy he landed a job at with the San Francisco Bulletin Newspaper. By 19 he was one of the highest paid artists at the San Francisco Examiner. He also illustrated as a reporter/artist for pretty intense scenarios. This meant he spent quite a bit of time in a morgue apparently…. Which strengthened his sense of anatomy with illustration. Some people take classes, some people sit in morgues. Henry’s a little more interesting.

Raleigh was extremely successful making over $100,000 salaries over his career and extremely prolific having done around 20,000 illustrations for magazines.

I love his art with it’s very loose and full of life style but his story is movie material and that definitely makes me like him even more. He was extremely entertaining to read about actually.

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