Art History Week
The 19th century marks a huge technology development, with printing techniques improving enough to make newspapers and books a truly mass-popular medium. Along with that, there appeared new opportunities for the illustrators. In the second half of the 19th century, the popularity of illustrated books and magazines reached the highest level recorded by that time and it eventually became the foundation to border the official beginning of the Golden Age of Illustration's timespan: 1880's. Formally it lasted until 1910's-1920's, with variations between Europe and North America.
The core illustrators lived a long time after this period and continued creating pictures in their style - which is defined as typical for the Golden Age. However, new styles and the slow decrease of popularity of book and newspaper illustrations (supported by the rising popularity of photography) after the World War determined the formal end of this age. The European illustrators were influenced mostly by the Pre-Raphaelites, Art Nouveau and Post-Impressionists (e.g. Les Nabis, a group of Parisian artists), and their American colleagues focused around Howard Pyle's Brandywine School of American Illustration in the Brandywine Valley.
Plenty of today's artists is inspired by the Golden Age of Illustration. You can find quite a few great ones around and outside dA, encounter their pictures in books (very rarely in magazines). Amongst the most popular ones, there should be named Alan Lee, famous for his Tolkien related illustrations and his concept work for Peter Jackson, Shirley Barber and her fairytales, or Ted Nasmith - also a Tolkien illustrator. To find illustrators inspired by G.A. on dA, I recommend visiting GoldenIllustration
Heading back to the Golden Age itself, most of the famous European artists of this period originated in Central and East Europe - UK, France, Scandinavia, which covers the areas with the highest technology developement of that time. The names: Arthur Rackham, Edmund Dulac, John Bauer or Theodor Kittelsen are bound to the definition of the Golden Age and their works gather the essence of its characteristics.
Born on the 19th of September 1867 in London. In 1892, he started working as a reporter and an illustrator for The Westminster Budget
. His first major publication took place in 1894, for Anthony Hope's The Dolly Dialogues
. After that Rackham became a full-time illustrator for the rest of his life.
you can find an article about this illustrator.
Born in 1882 in Jönköping, Sweden. He started sketching very early in his childhood, although there is no formal date known. In 1898, when the young Bauer was 16, he moved to Stockholm to study art and two years later he started the Royal Swedish Academy of Art. He used to illustrate a yearly fairy-tale book, Bland tomtar och troll
, thanks to which he became famous in 1907 and his most popular artworks were those published in 1912-1915.
you can find an article about him.
She was born in 1901 in Elberfeld, Rhine Province of the Kingdom of Prussia. She began drawing at the age of 4, at the same time when she started talking about seeing fairies, angels, gnomes and other nature spirits. The subjects of her drawings were those visions. For a couple of the first years of her life, Sulamith and her parents lived in a secluded area and the little girl was convinced that they were the only humans in the world.
you can read an article about her.
Theodor Severin Kittelsen was born in 1857, in a coastal town of Kragerø, Norway. At the age of 11, Theodor started working for the local watchmaker. Six years later a chance for a lighter life appeared: his manual talent was noticed and 17-years-old Kittelsen started studying in Wilhelm von Hanno's drawing school in Olso. In 1889 he married Inga Dahl. Their new home, along with artist studio, was called Lauvlia. Kittelsen spent his artistic golden age there, illustrating Norske Folkeeventyr (Norwegian Folktales)
from Jørgen Moe and Peter Christen Asbjørnsen.
is an article about this illustrator.
He was born in 1876, in Saint Petersburg, Russia. Before he became a student of the great Ilya Repin, he studied at the Art School of Anton Ažbe in Munich. His illustrations to Russian faery tales from 1899 made him famous. The most recognisable pictures from that year are the ones of Vasilisa the Beautiful
you can read an article about him.