Monday, November 11, 2013

Dean Cornwell War Bond Poster



Here's a preliminary charcoal drawing and finished image by Dean Cornwell for a war bond poster. At this stage of his career, Cornwell was not using photography for reference, and was doing his planning from models and studies, combined with his imagination. The authority that he brings to the design of the image, right down to the folds of the shirt, really carries over into the final picture.
Edit: Coincidentally, Charley Parker of Lines and Colors posted about the same painting.

7 comments:

Tom Hart said...

Any idea what these guys are doing/flying? They look like pilots, but I see no windshield and that device hanging to the upper left looks almost like a computer or video screen, but based on the time this picture would have been made, that couldn't be...or...?

jeff jordan said...

It's a tank.

Tom Hart said...

Thanks Jeff! NOW I see that...

Rich said...

I was wondering as well:
A closer look gave me another clue. This guy's very prominent (and well drawn) "thumbs up": it just points up to that little screen. The screen shows a blazing direct hit on another tank!

Based on the time this picture would have been made, who would have thought of computer games...?

Comparing these two images here = nice pastime.

David J Teter said...

You can also visit Charley Parker's Line and Colors for another post on this particular Dean Cornwell as well as a link to a Mike Manley post of the same.

Tyler J said...

There are some differences in the charcoal drawing and finished piece. What seems a bit odd to me is that some of the differences are in areas that I would have expected more faithful copies.

Most specifically, the folds on the shirt forearm are not exactly the same. Why change the folds? Did the charcoal drawing more accurately capture the model's folds, or were those drawn from imagination before the model ever sat down? If they were accurate then changed for the final, why do it? Presumably because it was for stronger design, but it seems like Mr. Cornwell would have to be confident enough in his skills to fake it better than real life, so to speak.

Rich said...

A main distinction IMO between charcoal drawing and finished work
lies in clearing out, de-cluttering the picture. Whereas in the first attempt, men and machinery form kind of an unsorted overall picture, there's a clear accent on those two protagonists in the colored issue.