Jessie Willcox Smith cover illustration for "Collier's Weekly" (1907): rare, beautifully framed 1907 Collier's magazine antique
By Jessie Willcox Smith
On the December 28, 1907 Issue
Vol. xl No. 14
Image Size: H 15.00” x W 11.00”
Matted & Framed: H 22.00” x W 18.00”
Framed Price: $290.00
After completing her studies at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in1888, Smith joined the advertising staff of Philadelphia-based Ladies Home Journal. While she was making her way as an artist, it seems she was not satisfied with her career . In 1894, while still at the LHJ, she enrolled in the illustration class Howard Pyle began teaching at the Drexel Institute. She later credited Pyle with sweeping away "the cobwebs and confusions that so beset the path of the art-student." Virtually all JWS’s early works were pen and inks shaded with washes. Most were probably reproduced photographically with steadily improving the halftone process. By 1905, color separation technology was good enough for JWS to fill her illustrations for a new edition of Robert Louis Stevenson’s A Child’s Garden of Verses with color. This book marks the beginning of her fame as a child illustrator. It also marks the beginning of "the age of color" for illustrated books. JWS intended her 1907 cover for Collier’s to broaden her audience from young mothers to women in the home. She was very successful in this regard - between 1917 and 1933, she created 184 covers for Good Housekeeping Magazine.