I forgot St. Patrick’s day. But I remembered all-Trump, all-the-time is dull. And some people like my pen-and-ink posts. So let’s celebrate a pair of illustrators named ‘Neill’, or nearly.
First, Rose O’Neill. American born. She’s famous/not-famous. She invented Kewpies. Major breakthrough in cuteness technology, making her hugely wealthy through sale of toys. She was also a writer and active suffragette. And those things came together.
But here’s the good stuff, pen-and-ink-wise. She also produced what she called her ‘sweet monster’ art, which is really very striking, to my eye. And I don’t think many folks know of it. Some of it Irish mythology-inflected, but all of it with a powerful swirling flow, which is also one of the features that makes kewpies so cute.