It Did Not Stay For Its Close-up

After lunch today I scanned the next five of Charles Keeping’s idiosyncratic illustrations to Charles Dickens’s ‘Martin Chuzzlewit’, displaying the artist’s liquid line in expressive portraiture. ‘Martin and his friend followed them to the door below’ ‘On his livid face was one word – Death’ ‘Whole troops of married ladies came flocking round the steps’Continue reading “It Did Not Stay For Its Close-up”

Eternal Spring

After lunch I progressed enough with ‘Martin Chuzzlewit’ to feature another handful of Charles Keeping’s splendid illustrations to Charles Dickens’s novel. In ‘The sky was black and cloudy, and it rained hard’, Dickens has used the weather as a symbol of the mood he wishes to create. The artist has reflected this in the verticalContinue reading “Eternal Spring”

Refurbishment

Scanning the dull granite skies did not look promising today, so I scanned the next half dozen of Charles Keeping’s sinuous line illustrations to Charles Dickens’s ‘Martin Chuzzlewit’, followed by colour slides of a visit to Nunhead Cemetery on a much brighter day in September 2008. ‘An anxious shade came upon his contented face whenContinue reading “Refurbishment”

Clear, Changing, Light

We began the day with an early trip to Milford on Sea Pharmacy. Cloudscapes over the Solent and Christchurch Bay were ever changing. The Isle of Wight, invisible not so long avows nicely silhouetted against clear blue sky beyond bands of white cotton and degrees of indigo clouds. Cerulean patches peeped through others. Empty cruiseContinue reading “Clear, Changing, Light”

The Old Curiosity Shop

Early this morning I finished reading ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’ by Charles Dickens, and scanned the last three of Charles Keeping’s illustrations to my Folio Society edition of 1987. This book bears all the qualities of Mr Dickens’s story-telling. We have mystery, suspense, moving prose, humour, and more than a touch of sarcasm. There isContinue reading “The Old Curiosity Shop”

Mounting The Verge

With a penultimate scanning session today ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’ is almost closing for Charles Keeping’s exquisite illustrations ‘They descended the narrow steps which led into the crypt’. Was the old man here based on Alastair Sim, even though he never made a film about this novel? Here is the trailer for his Scrooge: https://youtu.be/WqbQYsjrDR4Continue reading “Mounting The Verge”

Spume

On this wet, windy, Wednesday morning I passed four more of Charles Keeping’s splendid illustrations on my visit to ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’ by Charles Dickens. ‘Kit’s mother and the single gentleman, speeding onward in the post-chaise-and-four’ occupies a double page spread. ‘ ‘Aquiline!’ cried Quilp, thrusting in his head, and striking the feature withContinue reading “Spume”

The March Garden

Bluebell is the young lady I photographed yesterday between her partner, Aaron, and the Shetland pony he was photographing. She photographed me photographing them from beside my trusty steed, and has e-mailed me a copy of it, for which I am very grateful. This morning I made a further five illustrations into ‘The Old CuriosityContinue reading “The March Garden”

A Tryst

Today I scanned Charles Keeping’s next seven illustrations to ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’ by Charles Dickens. ‘ ‘Go, sir,’ returned Dick, leaning against a post and waving his hand’. He is quite clearly drunk. ‘The boy threw his wasted arms around the schoolmaster’s neck’ is a typically tender scene. ‘They drew up there for theContinue reading “A Tryst”

Keeping A Safe Distance

For most of a dull yet warm day I watched the Channel 4 broadcast of the soporific third Test Match between India and England. Later, I scanned the next three of Charles Keeping’s illustrations to ‘The Old Curiosity Shop’. ‘Grinder’s lot’ are stilt walkers, who were popular entertainers during Dickens’s time. There are a numberContinue reading “Keeping A Safe Distance”