Saturday, March 27, 2010

Women in Folklore Month: Margaret Evans Price

It's Saturday which means today is an illustrator day. I chose Margaret Evans Price for this last Saturday in March and as part of Women and Folklore Month.

From Wikipedia:

Margaret Evans Price (March 20, 1888 – November 20, 1973) was a U.S. toy manufacturer. With her husband, Irving Price, and Herman Fisher, she co-founded Fisher-Price Toys in 1930. Margaret Evans was a children's book illustrator and artist. She became the first Art Director of Fisher-Price and designed push-pull toys for the opening line, based on characters from her children's books.

And from the Meibohm Fine Arts website which has an informative timeline of Price's life:

Margaret wrote and illustrated numerous childrens books, and or collaborated on many others such as: Angora Twinnies (author & illustrator, 1915), The Manger Babe (illustrator, 1916), Land Of Nod (author & illustrator, 1916), Hansel & Gretel (author & illustrator, 1916), The Night Before Christmas (illustrator, 1917), Once Upon A Time: A Book Of Old-Time Fairy Tales (author & illustrator, 1921), Enchantment Tales For Children (author & illustrator, 1926), Legends of the Seven Seas childrens book (author & illustrator, 1929), A Treasure Chest of Nursery Favorites (collaborated illustrator, 1936), Myths and Enchantment, childrens book collection of twenty Greek and Roman myths (author & illustrator, 1954-58), Mirage, a novel of the first Florida colonies (author & illustrator, 1955), to name just a few.

You don't know how excited I was when I first discovered her Furball illustrations. It's rare to find Donkeyskin variants illustrated--there are some, but much hunting was involved in finding them.

I have a Margaret Evans Price shop on CafePress as well as an illustration gallery for her on SurLaLune. She has many illustrations for each tale, so do explore the gallery to see many more. I just chose five of my very favorites for this post.

In recent years, I have seen many reprints of her illustrated books for the Barnes and Noble bargain books imprints. Most are out of print now, but available used for excellent prices. Young children respond well to her bright colors and multiple illustrations per tale. You may also still find some of them in the brick and mortar stores in the bargain book areas. I wish those had been around when I first discovered her work years ago.

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