"The Great Gatsby" film has sparked interest in the style and fashions of the 1920s. This era between the two World Wars was a time of optimism, exuberance and, in reaction to the anxiety and tragedy of war, of indulgence, luxury and the pursuit of entertainment and pleasure. Designers of the period, such as Poiret, Doucet, Patou, Lanvin, Mainbocher and Vionnet made clothes of silk, satin, gorgette and chiffon; beaded, sequined, fur trimmed and printed with bold designs.
The detritus of everyday life, that we collectors call "ephemera," can be powerfully evocative. Among the most powerful for me, and for many others, is the luggage label. These in the 'golden' past of the "Great Gatsby" Jazz age between the two world wars, were affixed to one's luggage and became a cumulative history of one's travels.
Art Nouveau, which originated in the late 19th century, attempted to free decoration from the straight-jacket of uniformity and convention. Its most important influence was the luxuriant growth of plants transformed into decorative design.
KINSHIP WITH ANIMALS
Their Focus on Basic Things: Children's books usually show and tell us of basic things–family, friends, toys, sleep, animals, food, home. Their situations are also elemental–the lost is to be found, the stranger is to become known, a simple problem is to be solved, a one-hour adventure completed.
Children's picture books usually concern one day, or even a portion of a day. Adult fiction ordinarily covers years, or lifetimes or even generations. It is refreshing to look closely at a child's day. Children live in the moment, whereas we adults look frequently backward or forward.
For a child each day is a time of new discoveries. One after another things that are familiar to adults come into the focus of a child's consciousness. Here is a wonderfully acrobatic squirrel; now the nightly changes of the moon; or, of a sudden, the splendor of sunrise, the power of an electric plug to serve or harm, the grace of birds, the changing shapes of clouds, people talking and laughing and shouting, buildings rising into the sky. Most grown-ups pass unseeing through the daily miracles of which children, with their fresh vision, remind us. Their picture books explore and celebrate the beauty of daily life and, we who enjoy them are reminded of its beauty. They help us to see and experience as we used to. Our imaginations are refreshed and we are able to again enjoy daily phenomena as the splendid things they truly are. –Welleran Poltarnees
Even computer companies issue paper catalogs. Being in the business of printing images, we certainly do also. They are tangible, portable and easy to use and refer to. I you would like our printed catalog, send us $1 (bills accepted). Our address is 3645 Interlake Ave. No., Seattle WA 98103.
John R. Neill (1877-1943) reluctantly agreed to replace W.W. Denslow– illustrator of only the first Oz title, THE WONDERFUL WIZARD OF OZ– as the illustrator of Frank Baum's Oz books. He proved a glorious choice, giving unforgettable reality to all of the strange or beautiful inhabitants of the Land of Oz. His lines are sure, his style economical and his work, both in line and color, balanced, pleasing and graphically bold. He illustrated thirteen of Baum's titles, then nineteen Oz titles by Ruth Plumley Thompson. Finally, he wrote and made pictures for three Oz books of his own. Baum crowned him, "The Imperial Illustrator of OZ."
More than other imaginary lands, Oz welcomes a great variety of visitors. We take pleasure in visiting Narnia and the many realms of Tolkien, but few of us go there. Alice is the one who goes down the rabbit hole. Few follow her. Oz, on the other hand, welcomes many visitors from our world, and is open to many interpretations. Perhaps reason is that Baum himself wrote so many books about Oz, and filled it with hundreds of characters. It is a place where our imaginations are set free.