Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Really Old Old-School Artist Week Day 3:
Beatrice Elvery

Welcome to Day 3 of my "Really Old Old-School Artist" week. today I'm featuring Beatrice Elvery. She's an oddity among these types of illustrators, and not because she's a woman. Heretofore, all of the artists featured in this series have been well-known illustrators with a wide body of work. Elvery, on the other hand, is known mostly as a designer of stained glass. And I think if you look at the illustrations below, that will be obvious from the almost stained-glass-like quality in the heavy line work and strong positive and negative spaces. The images below all come from Russell Violet's 1914 book Heroes of the Dawn, a collection of stories of Celtic legend and myth.

Something about the overall quality of Elvery's work makes me think of Dave Billman's work from Lords of Creation. And as I've mentioned before, Billman is one of my favorite artists from the early generations of RPGs.


  1. Really digging this series! Keep them coming!

  2. Thanks. And don't worry. Thursday's and Friday's posts are already prepped and scheduled for publishing/posting.

  3. were (are?) these wood-block prints?

  4. @Welbo: More than likely, they were submitted to the publisher as black and white art (probably ink on board/paper), then they were turned into metal printing plates, and printed the same way as the typeset type (using raised metal printing plates). Her style just appears wood-block-like because she did stained glass, as well as worked in the arts-and-crafts style of the period. There are others of the period with similar line qualities (e.g., Arthur Macmurdo, and sisters Margaret and Frances MacDonald).