Tuesday, 31 May 2016

Raymond Sheppard and For All Boys and For All Girls and Calling All Boys

I have often said tracking down Raymond Sheppard artwork in Blackie and Son Limited publications is difficult. The individual artwork can be reprinted with the same story, a different story, a different book and so on. But today I have some that - I believe - were new at the time they were published.

Artist Unknown


CALLING ALL BOYS Blackie & Son Limited [No Date / British Library: [1953]]
"Ginger of the Big Top" by John Hornby is illustrated with three line drawings by Sheppard. Hornby wrote "Avocet Island" and "Fen Laughs Last"(which I shall scan some time soon) in the school Crusader series.

I love these images that are wrapped by text, a far easier thing to do with desktop publishing  tools that it would have been in this book. But the effect still captivates me 60 years afterwards
Calling all boys, p. 133
Young boy in shorts, wearing boxing gloves boxes a kangaroo

Calling all boys, p. 135
Turbaned man runs ahead as elephant struggles uphill.
Behind is steam engine pulling caravan and a man pulls the boy uphill

Calling all boys, p. 140
Man wearing Cossack hat rides horse followed by another rider, both chasing two wolves 
Artist Unknown


FOR ALL BOYS  Peal Press [No Date / British Library: [NONE]]
Blackie & Son had a copy in 1951 with a Native American on a horse, My copy is a 'modern' one showing two 'mods' laughing at a young boy who has crashed his go-kart! It looks to me that Peal Press, - the British Library hold 109 identifiable titles from Peal Press (London and Glasgow) - was Blackie & Son Limited. Same printer, same addresses and same books! I found an alternate version of this book online with the same contents - except mine has no plates. Sometimes a publisher might produce cheap books to use for sale to Churches as rewards; or as immediate 'remainders'. I have also seen a title page which states "Blackie's Prize Book of Stories" by Peal Press! But if anyone can tell me the story of Peal Press, I'd love to know.

"Ship of the shore" by E. G. Ashton is illustrated by Raymond Sheppard on pages 38 and 42

For all boys, p.38
Sheba is demonstrative
A camel nudges man over as another man and boy look on
A lion in cage and caravan in rear

For all boys, p.42
Startling a bathing party
Boy on camel against cross hatched sky – three figures in background

Artist Unknown


FOR ALL GIRLS Blackie and Son Ltd 1951
"Royal Monkey" by Isobel Knight


For all girls, p.145
Introduction to Chinko
Two girls meet a turbaned 'sultan ' with a monkey on the desk in front of him

For all girls, p.146
Chinko refused to settle down
Angry monkey moves from plate of bananas and fruit

For all girls, p.148
Patsy flung herself at the Indian
A Girl grabs turbaned man to the floor (bucket behind them)


Sunday, 1 May 2016

Raymond Sheppard and the Last Wolf and The Riddle

"It's old, it's wise, in spite of its howls
The treasure is hid by the knife.
A hunter must follow the three white owls:
But someone will pay with a life."


Lilliput Oct-Nov 1951 Cover by Donald Brown

I am the very proud owner of some original Raymond Sheppard artwork. Where some people love his animal work, I enjoy his magazine illustrations because they are interesting in the original format. But before I show what I own, I need to tell you my story. Many years ago I visited the British Library in order to list in detail Frank Bellamy's work in Lilliput magazine. I loved the fact while I was doing this I discovered many Sheppard illustrations. You need to know that Lilliput, at this stage, measured just 5.5" x 7.5" (14.5cm x 19.5cm) - allegedly to fit in soldier's pockets. So the bound copies were really hard to peruse quickly, and I was just looking for illustrations. I felt uncomfortable skipping through pages so quickly with more serious scholars beside me! But these bound copies made it hard to even do that! However I found Sheppard had illustrated a story called "The Riddle" by James Houston & Don O'Donnell (pages 64-66 of the above issue for those who need to know) - that's the riddle at the top of this article.


After alighting on three pages with Sheppard artwork (no Bellamy) I was pleased with myself and carried on through not expecting any more. I rushed past a page with a tiny illustration and paused on the next page. I went back and there in minute lettering was that now familiar signature!  The article? "The Last Wolf"

But let's first have a look at "The Riddle" and as a special treat I have scanned the whole Inuit story..

Lilliput Oct-Nov 1951: The Riddle illustrated by Raymond Sheppard
Small elven creatures dance while a boy looks on
Lilliput Oct-Nov 1951: The Riddle illustrated by Raymond Sheppard
A dog howls as three owls rise into the air
I had real trouble with the above illustration, seeing what I was looking at until I noticed the boy at the right of the picture peering over the rock. And reading the story I immediately 'understood'.

James Archibald Houston, one of the authors, is someone I'd never heard of but thanks to Philsp.com I found his middle name which helped me find information (on Wikipedia) much quicker. he was a "Canadian artist, designer, children's author and film-maker who played an important role in the recognition of Inuit art and introduced printmaking to the Inuit." Read more about this adventurer here. Don O'Donnell appears to have co-written the four stories that appeared in Lilliput between 1951-1952 (saved for another time) and the Library of Congress catalog shows me that a Don O'Connell was the pseudonym for a Windsor Howard O'Donnell but that leads nowhere beyond one published work and may not be the same person.

Now to the that wolf I mentioned. the picture I found was a mere 2 inches square give or take. It was no wonder I missed it it first time. Here's the complete article:

Lilliput Oct-Nov 1951 The last wolf?
This fascinating story of the "Allendale Wolf" is wonderfully told on Beachcombing's Bizarre History Blog and we have a contemporary postcard of the dead animal which even warrants a brief Wikipedia article


By Tassell, Carlisle - Postcard published in 1905,
Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=29279554
I prefer Raymond Sheppard's kinder treatment than this horrid postcard and I love the original artwork which I'm very proud to own.

Original art by Raymond Sheppard

The shaped paper over the artwork was there when I bought it