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Lifestyle Illustration of the 60s [Paperback]

Rian Hughes
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

31 May 2010
"Lifestyle Illustration of the 60s" is a stunning survey of magazine artwork from the Swinging Sixties. It not only gives a fascinating insight into the extraordinary artistic talents of the illustrators featured, but also reveals the social aspirations of this unprecedented era of political optimism and sexual freedom. Featuring over 1,000 gloriously inventive and stylistically diverse illustrations, "Lifestyle Illustration of the 60s" traces the decade's evolution from the homemaking ethos of romantic coupledom to the stylish liberation of mini-skirted Chelsea girls. In the process, it provides an intriguing and poignant glimpse into Sixties Pop Culture. The Sixties was an optimistic era of unprecedented change, and its heady zeitgeist was captured in the amazing range of artwork that adorned magazines of the time. "Lifestyle Illustration of the 60s" features page after page of stunning rediscovered artwork, much of it by the very best artists of the day. An informative introduction explores the history of this long overlooked art form and contextualises its place within a wider social context. "Lifestyle Illustration of the 60s" provides a wonderful, nostalgic escape into a world of stylishly sophisticated living, revealing just how much life has changed over the intervening decades.


Product details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Fiell Publishing Limited (31 May 2010)
  • Language: French
  • ISBN-10: 1906863040
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906863043
  • Product Dimensions: 25.4 x 20.3 x 4.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 229,693 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

Portraits of a decade: A new book of historic illustrations offers decorators authentic Sixties inspiration: During the 1960s women's magazines were booming. Woman, for example, was selling 3.5 million copies per week - the maximum its printing presses would permit. And - riding on the boom, was the art of illustration, which, due to the prohibitive cost of photography at that time, filled the pages of these publications.

Romantic fiction was also a staple, and the combination of the two disciplines resulted in a prolific output for the illustrators of the day, who specialised in depicting young women in passionate clinches with sharp-suited chaps on reproduction rococo beds; newlyweds sharing breakfast on classic Bentwood kitchen chairs; brooding Don Draper types, swirling whiskies on a Florence Knoll sofa, a voluptuous Joseph Henry Lynch painting, perhaps, symbolically in the background.

And now, a new book, Lifestyle Illustration of the 60s (Fiell), is the first collection of this gloriously stylised representation of the era. As the book's editor, Rian Hughes, writes in its introduction: "The artwork married an idealised and romantic image of high society ... often consisting of a young couple juxtaposed with decoratively drawn, stand-out design elements like plants, lampshades, elaborately wrought headboards, banisters or furniture ...

"It was a fantasy world completely at odds with a society still grappling with outside toilets, tenement housing and barely post-rationed food."

The book provides a wonderfully authentic snapshot of a design period so often reduced to cliché with mod-themed telephones, ugly orange wallpaper and space age shapes; the illustrations also provide a lot of shopping inspiration. --The Independent. Friday, 21 May 2010

During the 1960s women's magazines were booming. Woman, for example, was selling 3.5 million copies per week - the maximum its printing presses would permit. And - riding on the boom, was the art of illustration, which, due to the prohibitive cost of photography at that time, filled the pages of these publications.

Romantic fiction was also a staple, and the combination of the two disciplines resulted in a prolific output for the illustrators of the day, who specialised in depicting young women in passionate clinches with sharp-suited chaps on reproduction rococo beds; newlyweds sharing breakfast on classic Bentwood kitchen chairs; brooding Don Draper types, swirling whiskies on a Florence Knoll sofa, a voluptuous Joseph Henry Lynch painting, perhaps, symbolically in the background.

And now, a new book, Lifestyle Illustration of the 60s (Fiell), is the first collection of this gloriously stylised representation of the era. As the book's editor, Rian Hughes, writes in its introduction: "The artwork married an idealised and romantic image of high society ... often consisting of a young couple juxtaposed with decoratively drawn, stand-out design elements like plants, lampshades, elaborately wrought headboards, banisters or furniture ...

"It was a fantasy world completely at odds with a society still grappling with outside toilets, tenement housing and barely post-rationed food."

The book provides a wonderfully authentic snapshot of a design period so often reduced to cliché with mod-themed telephones, ugly orange wallpaper and space age shapes; the illustrations also provide a lot of shopping inspiration. Here's how to recreate some of the looks. --The Independent: Friday, 21 May 2010

About the Author

Rian Hughes is an award-winning graphic designer, illustrator, comic artist, logo designer and typographer. He studied graphic design at the London College of Printing before working for an advertising agency, 'i-D' magazine and a series of record sleeve design companies. In 1994, he founded his own studio, Device, and has since worked with a wide range of international clients in publishing, advertising, music and fashion. He has also worked extensively for the British and American comic book industries, both as artist and designer.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous collection 25 Sep 2010
By Parka HALL OF FAME TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Length: 1:01 Mins
Kudos to the author for putting together this amazing collection of illustrations from the 60s. I can't imagine the amount of effort required to source and credit the thousand over pieces of art. There's a total of 576 pages so this paperback book is rather thick.

The style, well, is 60s and the variety comes from the different human subjects featured and the colours. The reproduction of the paintings are good. There's a very nice textural look to them. What strikes me immediately besides the style is the use of masterful composition. The examples on composition are good enough for me to recommend this book even to lifestyle photographers who haven't any interest in paintings -- there's plenty to learn from seeing.

This book should be very nostalgic for anyone working in the design industry during those times. It provides a very interesting glimpse into the the 60s pop culture.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good memories 19 Dec 2010
Format:Paperback
I congratulate Rian Hughes for recognising the fantastic period of magazine illustration during the sixties, and for having the courage to do all the research needed. As an illustrator at the time, and having worked on Womans Own, Womans Realm, Honey magazine, I am still amazed at the freshness of the illustrations and remember well trying to compete with some of the Americans like Joe DeMers, Coby Whitmore, ,Joe Bowler, Bernie Fuchs, and Bob Peak, to mention but a few.They were paid much higher fees than us, and had access to the best models and actors than we had at our disposal, which is why I moved on to advertising work. However that doesn't detract from
the quality of their work.

I thank Rian Hughes and Fiell Publishing for bringing this period of illustration to a wider audience and giving these artists/illustrators the recognition they deserve.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The art of romance 18 July 2010
By Robin Benson TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
How amazing to come across a book that I could never imagine would be published but here it is. Over a thousand illustrations from American and British artists used to illustrate romantic fiction in women's weekly and monthly magazines. They all come from British titles of the sixties and you might think, that inherently, the visual format is rather restrictive and it's true that much of the art is similar but these artist's compositions and paint techniques are varied enough to provide interest page after page.

Having work in magazine publishing back then I was familiar with many of these great illustrators. I was a big fan of Bernie Fuchs and David Roach mentions in his intro that Al Parker was a great influence in the forties and fifties (especially with his mother and daughter paintings for the covers of the Ladies' Home Journal) and Fuchs was a similar inspiration for many illustrators in the sixties, he gets ten works in the book with a stunning spread on pages 326-327.

I estimate the book has the work of over two hundred illustrators, and plenty from unnamed artists. Lynn Buckham has the most then good showings for Joe Bowler, Joe DeMers, Eric Earnshaw, Frank Haseler, Michael Johnson, Brian Sanders, Herb Tauss, Andy Virgil, Coby Whitmore and Walter Wyles. Oddly the great Austin Briggs only gets one. There are several illustrations from teenage weeklies that I would have left out. They are uncredited fashion and spot illustrations of no particular merit especially when compared to the artists whose work fill up most of these pages.

The book's production is excellent and very similar to the Taschen thick, chunky soft cover titles (in fact Taschen published the Fiell's Decorative Art series).
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb 2 Oct 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Amazing how many of the paintings are from magazines such as Woman's Own / Woman's Journal / Women etc and probably at the time were hardly given a second glance by the readers of the magazine (well, that was my experience, perhaps others saved them and admired the artwork at the time, I don't know) and yet now, wow, many many stunning pieces of artwork. Not sure if it really gives a feel of the lifestyle of the times, with most of the pics definitely on the moonlight romance etc theme. Still, really love the work and just hope there are many more similar collections of art of the 40s / 50s / 60s and 70s. Just wish more of this style of art was in Women etc now and not endless pics of celebrities.

Certainly if the original works exist, they would be an excellent addition to any art gallery / museum (though I guess most prefer some of the dire stuff that passes as modern art)
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