N. C. Wyeth title page illustration from "Robin Hood" (1917): rare, beautifully framed antique
Title Page for Robin Hood
By Paul Creswick
Illustrations by N. C. Wyeth
Philadelphia. David McKay Publisher. 1917
Image Size: H 9.25” x W 7.0”
Matted & Framed: H 16.25” x W 14.0”
Framed Price: $245.00
Whiteglove handling and shipping approximately: $32.00
Applying a great natural talent channeled by Howard Pyle into the art of storytelling, NCW became one of America's most popular illustrators. His career stretched from 1904 until his tragic death in 1945.
NCW's popularity owed to three special gifts that he made apparent in his work: 1) his ability to insert himself into the stories he interpreted, 2) his ability to create drama by picturing moments of high action, and 3) his ability to paint dazzling, color-filled pictures.
NCW finished upgrading his palette in the mid-1910s. A new phase of his career opened as he created scenes with this new "purple" pallet. He created two of his most brilliant series of illustrations in 1917. The first was his fourth Scribner's Classic, The Boy's King Arthur. The second was the edition of Robin Hood he produced later in that year for David McKay.
We see in these pictures that by 1917, the artist had escaped entirely from the dark shadowy city style he had learned from Howard Pyle. In Sherwood Forest, we have brilliant light, an abundance of color, and swaths of romantic purple and plum. The artist uses his title page scene to point his audience into the romantic world of adventure they are about to enter. The moment he portrays is typical for NCW, crisp and clear, beautifully formed characters, muscles tensed. The action is about to begin!