Thursday, January 12, 2012

Appreciating Rockwell, Pt. 2

Here is another Rockwell painting that is seen far too infrequently.

Lincoln For The Defense, Norman Rockwell.

Someone once told me that "A good design is one in which you've removed everything you can remove". I think this painting is a nice example of that notion.

There is so much I love about this painting;
The way the canvas echoes Lincoln's form,
The way the suspender echoes the man's chains,
The way he's managed to tell a whole story, and implied a whole life-time of conviction, with just the strength of Lincoln's hand.


  1. Rockwell's paintings in person are so amazing. You dont get the full effect of his colors from reproductions, I could only imagine what this looks like in person.

  2. yes! and the bow-tie echoes the figure as well. as far as gesture.

    very spectacular piece.

  3. Got to see the original when the Rockwell show came to Tacoma, WA. It was one of my favorites in the show. He made Lincoln look heroic with simple things like that fist, the worms eye perspective and his expression.

  4. Lord, that's fantastic. Thank you so much!

  5. I showed this to my hubby, who isn't much of an art fan, and his response says it all:


  6. There's another N.R. Lincoln at the Butler Institute in Ohio that gives off the same sense of scale. I've never seen it before I went to visit the museum.

  7. Yes on all of your and others comments.
    For any (art historical critics) who ever called N.R. a 'mere' illustrator and not a serious painter can look to works like this. Illustration is just as serious as fine art.

  8. thanks for sharing this beautiful piece...i wish rockwell could of been released to paint like this more...we lost an amazing inspiration with his contractual expression to magazine covers

  9. I had the great opportunity this past weekend to see this original up close and personal. Man, Let me tell you. this pic DOES NOT do the original justice!

    PLEASE! I URGE EVERYONE in the Ohio (or surrounding states, I drove from Nashville) to go see this as well as most of the others Dan has posted on here. Such an amazing experience. the painting "Murder in Mississippi" is there. as well as ALL of his painted studies, photo references, original sketches and process photos for the painting. Again, no words can explain the invaluable experience it is to stand among a Rockwell original.

    Such a great show. But you better hurry! it ends Feb. 5th I believe!

    P.S. there is SUPPOSED to be no photography... but I managed to snag a few nice clear up close detail shots with my iphone in HD mode. :) Great for studying at home.

  10. Strong piece, no words to describe it. Rockwell is always a light for us illustrators.


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