Sunday, December 21

Norman Rockwell

"The mood of the nation at war's end was perfectly expressed in this painting chosen as the official poster for the government's eighth war bond drive. Longtime Saturday Evening Post editor Ben Hibbs called it "the greatest magazine cover ever published." May 26, 1945. This is the caption for this painting, found in Norman Rockwell's Memory Album.

When I first looked at this painting, I was struck by his masterful use of color and how it draws your eye throughout the painting. Notice the bright white elements. Starting with the girl on the far left; her blouse and socks. Next is the boy jumping off the stairs and then follow the white up through the three people on the stairs, over to the shirt on the clothesline, up to the boy sitting in the tree and finally, to the collar on the dress of the woman in the window. It is almost the same with the elements of green in the painting. See how balanced it is; how it pulls your attention to every corner of the action.

I was only 4 years old when this appeared on the cover of the Post. I don't know how it was back then, but it is my fervent wish that we can see this scene happening all over the country as soon as possible. Especially this week.


The PINK wedding took a long time yesterday. It was in Henderson, NC, about 60 miles north of Raleigh. We left here at 2:00pm and we didn't get back to the shop until 7:30pm. As you might imagine, I was dog tired. I'll load the photos later and post them soon.


ET said...

That is a great picture. I am not sure but I think I read that the same soldier was on several Saturday Evening Posts, almost like a series of very heart warming scenes within a greatly compositioned picture.

Tabor said...

I also think the solider was repeated. I am a big fan of Norman Rockwell and have always been intrigued by his picture storytelling.

bobbie said...

Rockwell was so great. His paintings told the American story like no one else could. I wonder what he would paint for today's society.

Boo said...

Glad the wedding went well.

I too love Norman Rockwell

Pagan Sphinx said...

Having lived only a short distance from the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, I had to pay a visit. Prior to visiting, I didn't consider myself much of a Rockwell fan. Perhaps because I took him for granted; his images being everywhere and also, I must admit, depicting an America world that I myself did not grow up with.

In any event, after my visit, I really appreciated him so much more! I especially liked some of the works that I was not familiar with: those that depicted social and political changes in America such as the civil rights movement.

I think that Rockwell is becoming more and more appreciated in general, as is the case for a lot of artists after they pass on.

Betty said...

I loved Norman Rockwell, too. The expressions on all the faces are priceless in all of his illustrations.

Kay Dennison said...

My parents subscribed to The Saturday Evening Post for years and I loved the Rockwell covers that made me a fan of his for life!

Thanks for sharing it with me!

Granny Annie said...

Indeed an artist and a time to remember.

Weeping Sore said...

What a lovely way to wish for peace!
I'm ashamed to admit that my first impression on seeing the picture was that these people are poor. That says some terrible things about me, but gives me something to wish for this season.
Then, I noticed how happy the people were to have their soldier home from war.
I especially like the girl hiding behind the corner of the building. There's an entire story there.

moon said...

I love all of Rockwell's stuff, it is so recognizable , even today...they are history lessons and so well done..with so many layers..Thanks for sharing this.

Jamie Dawn said...

I am so happy because all the images showed up when I clicked here, and I was able to get to your comments page. Hooray!!!!

Rockwell's work was amazing!

I hope you are rested up after all the work on that PINK wedding.

Beverly said...

I love that painting, as well as so many others of Rockwell's painintgs. This particular painting reminds me of some of the friezes at the World War II Memorial in Washington.

I hope his work becomes more valuable again, because I have a lot of it.

themom said...

I am a great fan of Norman Rockwell prints. He had a talent for making them "personal."

Peter said...

Rockwell's paintings were well known and loved even as far afield as Australia Judy, a great American.
Happy Christmas.

PI said...

Rockwell rocks!