Friday, June 06, 2014

No Stone Unscanned

I found a book today that was in appalling condition, covered in enough mould to cure a TB epidemic. It was beyond repair, but luckily I was able to salvage the contents for scanning purposes.

Some of these illustrations by Reynolds Stone are barely larger than a postage stamp, but each one is as complete and satisfying as a full canvas.

Many of Stone's illustrations have a sense of quiet desolation about them. If people appear, they are always alone and the landscapes they inhabit seem to have come from the collective imagination of songs, poems and stories.

Here is a representative selection:


Rog said...

Stunning, particularly if they were produced by simply chiselling a piece of wood!

A secondary career as an archivist beckons, Steerforth

Letterslive said...

He was an exceptionally talented engraver. A few years ago I was lucky enough to hear a lecture about his work given by his son, Humphrey. (Not the actual event I attended but the same lecture.)

Kid said...

Shame the book couldn't be repaired, but nice that you saved the illustrations. I hate seeing damaged books and sometimes do my best to repair them, creating dust jackets where possible. Here are a couple of examples if you're interested:

Steerforth said...

Rog - I didn't appreciate woodcuts until I started selling secondhand books. How anyone can produce such intricacy in a piece of wood is beyond me.

Letterslive - Thank you so much for the link. What a fascinating lecture and all the better for having accompanying slides.

Kid - The Wind in the Willows covers are fantastic. I'm very impressed. I wish I had your talent and technical know-how to do this, as they are well worth the effort.

Kid said...

Thanks very much, Steerforth, but it really wasn't as difficult as I perhaps made it sound. All that's required is a scanner, printer and a computer. (And a craft knife and Prittstick.) Glad you liked them, as I know your standards will be high.