Thursday, March 24, 2011

Illostribute - David Klein

Illostribute - David Klein

I was asked by the very talented Mr Toby Thane Neighbors to contribute to his blog Illostribute (, after he saw my work on the Drawn! website.

The idea behind the blog is to pay tribute to "master" illustrators from the past, by inviting cool,
contemporary illustrators (like me! hehe) to interpret their work.

Sadly I was too snowed under with other commitments to create a piece inspired by the last two masters - Earl Oliver Hurst and Al Hirschfeld. So this time around I was determined to make the time to produce an image based on the work of the next illustration maestro, no matter what.

For the forthcoming tribute post, Toby has chosen the amazing mid-century illustrator David Klein, most famous for his beautiful travel posters. The following website has the largest collection of his work on the web:

I was particularly inspired by the posters and window cards he created for a local theatre company, the Heights Players, from the mid 50s until the late 60s. You can see a handful of examples by following this link:

I have chosen to illustrate a poster for a production (by a fictitious theatre company!) of Dylan Thomas' masterpiece Under Milk Wood, written in 1954, in which an all-seeing narrator invites the audience to listen to the dreams and innermost thoughts of the inhabitants of an imaginary small Welsh fishing village, Llareggub (which is bugger all spelt backwards).

I have shown a few of the play's characters - Mrs Ogmore Pritchard and her two dead husbands, Polly Garter, Waldo, Dai Bread, &c., &c. set against the hillside. Only the blind old sea-captain, Captain Cat, 'sees' the town go through its day, as he sits in his window on the quayside and remembers his drowned shipmates and his long dead love Rosie Probert. In the 1972 film Captain Cat was played by Peter O'Toole and Rosie Probert by the late great Elizabeth Taylor (RIP).


Duncan said...

Fantastic - love the array of faces. I take it the rough outline shape of Wales was intentional.

clive Hicks-Jenkins said...

Clearly with Under Milk Wood you're getting into the mood for your trip to Wales in May! Be sure to bring your sketchbook. You're coming to a beautiful area.

Paul Bommer said...

Gentlemen thank you, diolch!
Duncan, no, totally unintentional. I did wonder why I wanted that odd shape but didn't fine out why.
Clive, yes it looks so beautiful from the photos I've seen. Can't wait!

Mark @ One Way Photo said...

Love the black-and-white on blue colour combination you've used here

Paul Bommer said...

Cheers Mark.
Its a bit of a new technique for me, but I really love the way its turned out. Will definitely try a bit more of this in the future.

marlyat2 said...

Like the dark mass with the faces lit in its midst. Nice!