9 07 2010

JOSEPH CHRISTIAN LEYENDECKER was born 1874 in montabaur, germany and died in 1951 in new rochelle, united states. he is probably best known for his SATURDAY EVENING POST cover illustrations, between 1896 and 1950 he painted more than 400 of them. but he created as well numerous posters, book- and advertising-illustrations ( the ARROW COLLAR MAN and KUPPENHEIMER SUITS ). NORMAN ROCKWELL was a good friend, and you can see in his early SATURDAY EVENING POSTERS a strong resemblance to LEYENDECKER’S style. the mainstream image of santa claus as a jolly fat man in a red fur-trimmed coat was popularized by leyendecker, as was the image of the new year baby.

© j.c.leyendecker / saturday evening post




6 responses

9 07 2010
Ernesto Melo

Hi Hans! a beauty posted once again! One comment that I would add is about the preparatory sketches, there are some in watercolor… other of course in oil, but in them one can see the “washed” oil’s first steps. Then the powerful white strokes sharpening the silhouette…
Out of topic: as I know sometimes you play with “Harmony” :-), you’ll like this
one: http://www.jacksonpollock.org/
Muchos Saludos!

from hans –
thank you ernesto. the pollock site is amazing!!!!

11 07 2010

John Pomeroy was the guy to introduce me to leyendecker’s work in the late 1970’s at Disney when I was only into Rockwell and Maxfield Parrish. Then again, Milt opened my eyes to how he was inspired by Picasso 🙂 This is what I miss about the old days when animators passionately studied the masters!!! Thanks Hans

11 07 2010

Love Leyendecker! It’s always fun for me when I come across his studies. All of the little sketches and paintings of how he could manipulate the poses and expressions to give the piece exactly the feeling he wanted. Oh what a talent!

For whatever reason my favorite Leyendecker piece has always been one with a young woman who has cupid locked in a cage:
J.C. Leyendecker, The Saturday Evening Post, Easter, 1923
I think what draws me into this piece specifically is the storytelling aspect of it. Then I hang out with the picture longer because of the gorgeous handling of the patterns, and the details, like the handling of her hair.

Thanks for reminding me of my roots! :]

11 07 2010
Ernesto Melo

Thanks for the flickr link (sometimes it’s a gold’s mine) Kendra!, she has great
sets of 20’s ads that I’ve never seen before:
Schwarz-Kopf Dusseldorf, Messeheft April 1925

21 09 2010
Steve Brown

J.C’s brother F.X. was also an excellent artist.

21 09 2010
Steve Brown

But wasn’t the popular idea of Santa Claus was created by Haddon Sundblom?

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