If you are thinking of purchasing a copy of the book, I suggest you do so now . . .

At the moment, there isn’t much interest in the purchase of the book.  If the copies I now have listed on eBay do not all sell, it’s unlikely that I will be listing the book again in the immediate future.

Also, you may recall that a while back I kinda decided to stop posting to this blog, for the time being. I’ll probably soon be making the blog private (for the time being), mainly because in general I do not like to leave a blog up when I am not actively posting to it. (If I do make it private, it does not mean that it is gone forever.)

I DO have other interests as well, and I have a bunch of other blogs, but it is not realistic for me to expect to update this blog with any frequency at present, largely because of the tiny number of visitors. (In the past three days, there have been two visitors.)

Thanks you, to those intrepid souls who have purchased a copy of the book!

—Tom Sawyer

June 20, 2018

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Okay, I have listed the book on eBay!

The listing is now active!

I listed 6 copies.  The purchaser specifies the quantity desired (probably one).

If those sell, I will list more.

—Tom Sawyer

June 12, 2018

10:51 p.m.

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It is highly likely that I will begin offering the book for sale on eBay starting later today . . .

I’ll probably list the book sometime between 10:00 p.m. and midnight California time.

Today will likely be my publication day for the book.

—Tom Sawyer

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

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Today I received the shipment of books . . .

Hi All,

I received the shipment today.

I am not sure when I will start offering them for sale. I will likely do so sometime this week, maybe Wednesday, on eBay.

I quickly made a few scans of one of the books. The results of the scans are not all completely satisfactory, since I tried not to mash the open book down too much (so there is blur and shadow), and also the open book didn’t fit on the scanner area.

I hope to give advance notice here regarding the time I will be listing on eBay. I will probably list a few at a time, so if you miss the first listing, or the second listing, you should still be able to purchase. I honestly don’t think there will be a mad rush to buy copies.

Here are the scans:






—Tom Sawyer

June 11, 2018

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A brief look at one or two of Frank Godwin’s oil-painting techniques . . .

In this post, I am going to talk a little about one or two of the techniques Frank Godwin employed in his oil paintings.

In working on this post, I looked at a couple of earlier posts which I had made “private.” (In one case, I made it private back in 2013.  On the other one, I don’t know when I made it private.)  In any event, I have taken a lot of the content from those two earlier posts, and I have added some additional discussion.

One of the things that has always amazed me is the wide rage of techniques and media in which Frank Godwin was an expert.  Godwin created watercolor paintings, oil paintings, and gouache paintings.  And he painted in subcategories of certain general areas — for instance, as to oils, he used them for impasto effects and as a transparent glaze.  He was a sculptor, and an etcher.  And as to pen-and-ink, you could say that no one in history has been more accomplished.  Also, he was probably involved with other techniques and media that I am not thinking of at the moment, or that I am unaware of.

Oh, did I mention impasto?  Take a look at this:

A detail from an oil painting by Frank Godwin. A reproduction of the painting was used as the frontispiece of certain Winston printings of “The Swiss Family Robinson.”

That is from the original oil painting that Frank Godwin painted as one of his illustrations for The Swiss Family Robinson (Winston, 1929).  (For those unfamiliar with boat parts, the main diagonal dark shape is a “yard,” which is a spar (generally horizontal) that is attached to the mast.)  This detail is interesting for several reasons.  First, it shows precisely Godwin’s handling of the yard, the edge of which almost meets up with the background (a yellow sky).  He has made no effort to have the two areas of color rest against each other, but in essence has left a thin area unpainted (though there does appear to be a light-greenish background other than primer).  (It also appears that he painted the dark spar first.)

Also interesting is the treatment of the diagonal clouds of yellow and whitish.  One can to some extent discern which color was painted first, and where.  It appears to me that this sequence varied.

Most interesting (and obvious) is the impasto technique that Godwin used in the yellow areas.  Notice that he made no effort to disguise the direction of paint near the yard.  The brushstrokes were simply parallel to it!  And then, other brushstrokes are in different directions, often at right-angles to the spar.  And again, you can see that light-greenish background showing in places.

These are not necessarily approaches that would be adopted by all artists, and I have a feeling that Godwin’s handling of that tricky area of the painting was born of long experience.

If you look at a lot of Frank Godwin art, you will find that he often uses little lines, drawn at right angles to a major line, to break-up the main line, and make it a little more gentle. Probably this is normally used to provide a bit of gradation between two sections of the art. Here is an example from that ship-painting:

You can see little vertical dark lines at right-angles to the edges of the clouds (halfway down the image and to the right).

Here is a detail, which might make matters more clear:

It is remarkable that Godwin went to this effort, since the effect upon the actual book illustration would be (probably) negligible. The final illustration was greatly reduced from the rather large original art.

In his paintings, Godwin sometimes similarly used little patterns of lines to break up plainer areas, like shading in a pencil-drawing or hatching in a pen-and-ink drawing. That can be seen in the following image (small segment) from another oil-painting in my collection (which was used in a calendar in the early 1920s):

Notice the little lines on the sleeves, as well as the lines on the quiver (perpendicular to the long sides of the quiver).

Here is an image of a small section of another paining in my collection. It shows the heads of oxen, which are pulling a plow in the original. Notice to the right the little dots that Godwin used to suggest foliage.

The following image is a detail from the same original. It shows certain features that might be more typical of a drawing. Dozens of the little short lines can be seen in the top half of the image. Really nothing in the way of impasto is seen in this image.

I think that concludes this post!

—Tom Sawyer

June 8, 2018

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This is NOT by Frank Godwin . . .

This is not by Frank Godwin, but I think it is interesting, because it is an example of the Sunday Magazine that ran with The Sunday Star for an extended period. This is from late 1906. Godwin began working for The Evening Star and The Sunday Star (which are basically one newspaper) no later than early 1907.

It also has an awesome cover-illustration by Alonzo Kimball.

I could not fit the entire cover on my scanner, hence two scans (which show most of the cover).

—Tom Sawyer

May 26, 2018

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Another update on my soon-to-be-published book “Early Frank Godwin” — now at the printer!

First, “thank you” to the three gentlemen who made comments on the preceding post!

Any and all of the following is subject to change, but at the moment, this seems pretty accurate.

I sent the book to the printer today (Friday). If there are no problems with the files, it will probably be about three weeks until I am in possession of copies of the book.  The print order as it now stands for the first printing is for 25 copies. I will probably receive around 28 copies, and fewer than that will be for sale. I have not figured out the price yet, but whatever it is, I expect to sell copies of this first printing on eBay only. (I would love to have it be wildly successful, and for many printings to be implemented because of that, but if I really thought that was going to happen, I would have ordered more copies.)

I originally thought that the book would not deal with much more than The Dreams of Pipe, the Fan, but of course that would not have worked well. I also waffled on the question of what format to use. Originally, I thought I would use a horizontal 8.5 by 11 format. And I pretty much laid out the book in that format.  But in time I tried one or two other formats and ended up with a vertical 6 by 9 format, with the Pipe strips being rotated.

Also, I was going to use a portrait of Godwin on the front cover, and it worked great for the horizontal format, but not very well for the vertical.

Okay, every image below represents the present version of part of the book. But as I said, everything in this post is subject to change! (The first image shows the covers and the spine.)

That’s it! As I say, I have not  figured the price yet, but it will probably be less than $35, not including shipping.

–Tom Sawyer

May 18, 2018

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