Monday, 10 July 2017

Perfect Little Works of Art: Dog sketches by Mabel Gear, Vernon Stokes, Sidney Barrett and Persis Kirmse.

This is another of those unusual things I seem to accumulate. I'm not exactly sure what it is but my best guess is some kind of tradesman’s sample book? Sketches & Designs is written on the spine and the front cover, and the pages are filled with black-and-white images by familiar and not so well-known artists. The images have been pasted in as has a business card for The Photochrom Company. Most of the pictures measure 3.5 x 2.5” (about half the size of a postcard), although some are postcard size or even larger. They all have individual reference numbers, and/or titles. If you would like to see more images, please visit these previous posts:


This time I’m going to share several dog sketches by different artists. 

Mabel Gear;
Photochrom Mabel Gear Dogs

The one and only image by Vernon Stokes; 
Vernon Stokes image from salesman's sample book

Sidney Barrett;
Photochrom Sidney Barrett Dogs

The following page has a mixture of dogs and religious images. The dogs are by Persis Kirmse and the other images are by Enid Warne Brown. 

Dog Studies from an album of images



These are also by Persis Kirmse but this time they are drawn on a single sheet of paper. 



Photochrom Persis Kirmse Dogs


Another Persis Kirmse design this time titled: Cover design for dog studies on opposite page.
Photochrom Persis Kirmse Dogs

These are the images from the opposite page;
Photochrom Persis Kirmse Dogs

I know it's difficult to read the words in these small pictures, but together they make up a well-known nursery rhyme;

Monday’s child is fair of face,
Tuesday’s child is full of grace,
Wednesday’s child is full of woe,
Thursday’s child has far to go,
Friday’s child is loving and giving,
Saturday’s child works hard for its living,
And the child that is born on the Sabbath day
Is fair & wise & good & gay.

From the mention of a cover design, I assume the images might have been used in a book. I’ve tried to find it but have had no success. If you happen to know of it, please share the information as I would love to find a copy. 

The day of the dog E. V. Lucas
I thought it could be The Day of the Dog by E. V. Lucas published in 1932. Persis Kirmse certainly did the illustrations but having now found a copy it’s obvious the cover is very different from the image above. It's possible the cover design was changed prior to publication, or perhaps there is more than one edition.  Again if you happen to know I would love to hear from you.

E. V. Lucas and Persis Kirmse also collaborated on The More I See of Men - Stray Essays on Dogs, If Dogs Could Write and No-Nose at the Show but as far as I can tell  the above cover has not been used on any of them.

I’m a Thursday’s child who has a long way to go - all the way to New York if this picture is to be believed!
Persis Kirmse Dogs Thursday's child (dog in basket on way to New York)

Do you know which day of the week you were born? If you are unsure, you can check here but be prepared for some surprises!  According to the site, I’m approximately 2,173,350,469 seconds old (or I was when I was putting this blog post together). My birth flower is Poppy or Gladiolus (who knew?) and in dog years, I’m 476!  Harry S. Truman was President of the USA and Clement Attlee was Prime Minister here in the UK. Gosh that makes me feel old.

If you are interested in any of the following artists, please click on the links.


J. Francis Smith


Thanks for visiting,


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Notes & References 


Mabel Gear painter of birds and animals: Born at Ashby Rectory in Surrey, 1900. She studied at Colchester School of Art and under Septimus Power at Bushey. Gear exhibied at the Royal Academy; Royal Institute of Oil Painters; Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours; the Royal Society of British Artists, and abroad. She married Ivor I.J. Symes.
The Dictionary of British Artists

Persis Kirmse british artist born in Bournemouth, England, best known for her drawings, paintings and prints of animal subjects, especially dogs and cats.  Her sister, Marguerite Kirmse (1885-1954), also an artist, emigrated to the U.S. and was especially well known for her etchings of dogs.  Persis Kirmse stayed in Britain, and produced both fine art portraits and illustrations, usually in pastels, sometimes in oils.  Some of these were reproduced on calendars and sets of postcards.  She also made dog portraits for members of the European aristocracy.  She authored and illustrated several children’s books, including a series of animals enacting scenes from Shakespearean plays, which included Shakespeare at the Kennels (1934), Shakespeare with the Pets (1935), Shakespeare at the Zoo (1936) and Shakespeare and the Birds (1938).  She also illustrated animal-themed books by Frances Pitt and E.V. Lucas.  Kirmse exhibited her work, including a show of pastels at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1916.

George Vernon Stokes (printmaker; British; Male; 1873 - 1954): Painter in oil, watercolour and pastel, draughtsman and colour printmaker; who devised his own method of printing in colour. Noted for his animal subjects. Born in London and was privately educated. Exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1907; Royal Society of British Artists, Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour, the Fine Arts Society and provincial galleries. He illustrated magazines on natural history and dogs and with his sister, Cynthia Harnet: ' In Praise of Dogs', Country Life, 1936; 'Getting to know Dogs', Collins, 1947. He lived near Carlisle and latterly near Deal, Kent.



52 comments:

  1. The sketches are lovely! Thanks so much for sharing!

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    1. Thanks Linda, I think they are lovely too, but then I’m a real doggy person. Have a good week.

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  2. I love the drawings! Even the "plain" portraits are beautiful and expressive. I'm a Wednesday child... but hardly full of woe!

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    1. Hi Bish, I’m very glad you are not full of woe – that would be awful! I’m not sure I have far to go either. I've already been quite a long way. :-)

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  3. I was born on a Sunday...Yes! The Sabbath...
    And Yes! I'm Fair..Wise..and Good...But!
    certainly! certainly! NOT! Gay! :(.
    HeHe! We'll leave it there..I think! :).
    AND..I'm a Virgo...Perfectionist..Practical..
    Dilligent..Reliable..Critical..Modest..Intelligent.
    Virgos are always paying attention to the smallest details and
    their deep sense of humanity makes them one of the most
    careful signs of the zodiac. Their methodical approach to
    life ensures that nothing is left to chance, and although
    they are often tender, their heart might be closed for the
    outer world.
    My birth flower is a Buttercup...So! Bit of a let down there
    then. As my most favourite flower is the Pansy..closely followed
    by the Orchid..!

    The doggy sketches are very nice...but...l'm a pussy~cat person.
    I love dogs, as l love All animals, especially roasted...No! No!
    Joke! Joke! HeHe! My daughter has two Staffy's, and their a couple
    of tarts...Bless'em! :).

    Edward Verrall Lucas's book..The Day Of The Dog...does'nt feature
    to much on line, not a lot of info..except, you can purchase it on ebay for £14:50p...! Though not found one with above cover...
    Will take an in depth look later..!

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    1. Dear Willie, I should have guessed you were born on The Sabbath Day. :0)

      I’m a Virgo too, but I had no idea I was so virtuous. I do pay attention to the smallest details and drive those around me mad because of it. I include pansies in my favourite flowers along with snowdrops, primroses and lots of other spring flowers. A Buttercup could be considered a bit of a let down, but I like that song The Foundations used to sing, you know the one – Build me up Buttercup!

      I don’t think there are any sketches of pussy cats in the album but if there are you can be sure I will share them.

      Thanks for looking for the book – if anyone can find it, it will be you.

      Enjoy the sunshine x

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    2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iol0B-clFFM

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    3. Fond memories, thanks Willie it’s playing as I type!

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  4. Wonderful canine illustrations, what a fantastic book. I have an old Spiller's dog book and some of the illustrations seem to be the same or drawn by the same people. Have a great week, hugs, Valerie

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    1. Hello Valerie, I would love to see that dog book; anything about dogs is fine by me. Enjoy the week. x

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  5. Forgot to say, I was born on a Saturday exactly at moon rise on the winter solstice and my star sign is Sagittarius.

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    1. How interesting. Have you ever visited Stonhenge? You might enjoy the Winter Solstice http://www.english-heritage.org.uk/about-us/search-news/winter-solstice-2016

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  6. These dog sketches are precious. Each one has a personality that makes you want to hug them.

    Oh, and that's a heck of a lot of dog years!

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    1. Yes, I can’t believe I’m THAT old. :-)

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  7. Dear Barbara what wonderful sketches of the dogs. Loved each one...the illustrators were so very talented. Hopped over to your link concerning the day of birth...very fun - I was a Tuesday child..not sure I am full of grace but it is nice to think I am :) Hugs

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    1. Hello Debbie, you have to be full of grace, just as I have to go far – it’s the rule! :-)
      Have a lovely week.

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  8. I appreciate good pen and ink drawings. Those are excellent.

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  9. Aren't these wonderful? I especially like Mabel Gears.
    Going to check out the link now.

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  10. I'm 469 in dog years and born on a Sunday.

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    1. Hi Sandra, thanks for following the link.
      You and I have seen a good few ‘dog years’ between us.
      Have a good week.

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  11. Loved the sketches of the dogs. Artistry awes me. Perhaps because I have NONE of the skills needed.
    I am a Saturday child. Which makes sense.

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    1. I’m sure you have many talents in different areas. I’m hopeless at painting and drawing, but it doesn’t stop me admiring beautiful artworks.

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  12. These are wonderful, Barbara. I see a couple that remind me of my rough-coated Jack Russell who died long ago but lives on in my heart! I love seeing these -- thanks for sharing them.

    And thanks, too, for your visit to Marmelade Gypsy! Glad my "Giverny" pix were new to you!

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    1. Hello Jeanie, I’m so happy you shared the Giverny pictures again, I would have been sad to miss them.
      My parents had a Jack Russell called Jilly. She was the sweetest little thing but was also capable of ‘mad moments’ when she would tear around the house, up and down the stairs and through all the rooms scattering rugs and anything else that was left around. It was so funny to watch, and I’m sure she did it because she enjoyed making us laugh.

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  13. Oh Barbara, you know, when my husband and I go antiquing, we always see these charming and endearing dog portraits and we love them. The terriers are our favorites, and these are the EXACT ones that we see!

    Nature in any form makes us stop to appreciate the world we live in. To honor the canine in such beautiful art is to see through eyes of tenderness. BEAUTIFUL!

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    1. I see them too Anita, but I must admit I’ve not really looked at them before, I will now though. It would be fun to find reproductions of some in this collection. The originals would be even better, but I don’t suppose I would be able to afford to buy any of those!

      Thank you for your visit, sweet friend.

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  14. We all love pictures of dogs. It seems we are born in the same year except I was born on a Monday. No surprises there! All facts I already knew. We sure are old in dog years!!

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    1. We might be old in dog years Darlene, but we are young at heart! :)

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  15. These dog sketches are beautifully rendered, such detail. It was fun to discover I was born on a Friday (I'm not sure if I ever knew that before) and I definitely didn't know my birth flower was a Water Lily or Delphinium or Larkspur--I like them all!

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    1. Loving and giving – it goes without saying Marcia. Did you know Delphiniums, and Larkspur symbolize an open heart and water lilies are associated with rebirth and optimism as they return to waterways after the rains?

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  16. Hope the rest of your week is pleasant and productive.

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  17. Hi Barbara,

    I just adore and Penny the Jack Russell dog, adores those amazing doggy sketches.

    Thank you for a most interesting pawst, oops, post!

    Gary :)

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    1. Hi Gary, I was thinking this would be the perfect post for Penny, so glad you enjoyed it too. It is so good to see you blogging again, smiles to you and a big sloppy kiss for the modest Internet superstar!

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    2. Penny considers this to be the pawfect pawst! :)

      Hope you had a nice weekend, Barbara.

      Penny's human dad,

      Gary

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    3. Thanks Penny & Gary, you made my morning. The sun is shining, and I’m wishing you both a lovely day. :)

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  18. The cards are beautiful. I love dogs and I have one myself, so I always admire art with dogs and animals in general.
    I looked on the link too, when I was born, Margaret Thatcher was PM. That's an interesting fact. :)

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    1. Hello Anca, Terry and I are dog lovers too although we no longer have one. Our last little dog died a few years ago, and we decided not to have another but we do miss the company.
      Thanks for calling in, Barbara

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  19. I simply adore how you found all these wonderful artists who paint dogs. You put a LOT of work into this and it shows, too.

    I am a Sunday child. I've always known that, because my grandmother (grandparents raised me) used to say that saying to me. Thanks for sharing it with us, though, as well as the dog artists who are simply incredible!

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    1. It sounds as though you had wonderful grandparents.
      I’m glad you enjoyed the doggy illustrations. I think they are very special.

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  20. these sketches are outstanding my friend!
    what wonderful collection of these gorgeous images!!!

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    1. I'm so pleased you enjoyed them, thanks for coming over.

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  21. I was born on a wednesday and on a leap year! So cool! Thank you for the link! Those dog images are wonderful!! I love them! Big Hugs!

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    1. Thanks so much, I’m happy to know you enjoyed the images and the link. :-) xx

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  22. Like the illustrations, do not like my "dog years" - 525. Also I was born on a Wednesday, explains a lot, not sure about Brian - born on the Sabbath! xx

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    1. Well Sue I guess those dog years prove it once and for all. I am the younger sister by 49 dog years! I know Brian won’t let me get away with it, but just let me enjoy it for a while. :-) xxx

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    2. PS Terry and I were both born on a Thursday, which might explain some of our wanderlust. xx

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  23. These sketches are absolutely wonderful. Love them all Barbara. By the way I was born on a Friday in a leap year and it was Chinese year of the monkey. My birth flower is chrysanthemum and birth stone is Topaz. I won't go into how old it said as it makes me feel really ancient 😀

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    1. Hi Shashi, your comment just sent me off to find out about my Chinese year. It turns out I’m a rat!! It’s not all bad though because it tells me I’m an Earth Rat, a honest, flexible, modest, serious, with a strong sense of self-esteem. I would agree with most of that, but I’m not sure about the self-esteem. This is the website I visited (in case you are interested) https://www.chinahighlights.com/travelguide/chinese-zodiac/

      I know what you mean about feeling ancient – I think I will stick to human years from now on. :-)

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I really appreciate your comment. Thank you!
Barbara xx

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