Happy Sunday!

Here at “The Art of Oz,” I’ve been slowly trying to plan out the illustrators to discuss and if there’s a specific order to it.  The answer is no.  There is no order.  There is however a first post!

Growing up, there are three artists that seemed to be everywhere: Michael Hague, Charles Santore and Paul Granger.  Some of you may be thinking “Paul who?”  Paul actually pre-dates the other two in terms of illustrators.

In 1958, Scholastic published their first edition of “The Wizard of Oz” with illustrations by Paul Granger.  From what I can tell, these were reprinted again with new covers in 1980, 1990 and 2001.  Additionally, an English language printing from Spain was released in 1992.

 

Paul Granger’s illustrations were never a favorite of mine.  I think his Dorothy is relatively man-ish, the Scarecrow’s nose is weird and the Cowardly Lion is far too cartoonish.  His Witch is ok.  Interestingly, he chose not to illustrate Glinda, most of the Wizard’s permutations, or the discovery of the Tin Woodman…but he did illustrate the Hammerheads and the empty throne upon the return from the land of the West.

Paul Granger was also a bit of a mystery to me.  Many of the other Oz illustrators illustrated other books, but I didn’t actively remember encountering him elsewhere, and given how long his illustrations were in print (in fact, they’re still in print, according to the Scholastic website), I was surprised, so I did some searching.

It turns out, Paul Granger did also illustrated a handful of the Choose Your Own Adventure books from the 80s!  It also turns out that Paul Granger isn’t his real name.  His real name was Don Hedin.  He was born on November 5, 1920 and died in March 23, 2012.  He was a decorated WWII Air Force veteran in several campaigns and eventually did some painting trips for the Air Force.  He later went to work for Reader’s Digest as an illustrator and later Art Director, and even designed a few stamps for the USPS.  He seemed to live a very full life (at least, according to the obituary that I got this information from).

 

What’s your take, gentle readers?  Fan or no?

Ozzily Yours,

Garrett

 

Advertisements

7 thoughts on “The Art of Oz: Paul Granger

  1. Fan? YES.

    THIS book, with the more chubby and cartoonish Dorothy in red shoes, is the version where I first read the full story and was first introduced to Paul Granger’s illustrations! (back when I may have coloured Dorothy blonde hair with red shoes)!!

    I often saw the MGM covered book at a family friend’s house and wanted to have it because I knew it had the illustrations … but i didn’t know enough to say exactly what I meant, so I never got it.

    However I do have 2 copies of this book with Paul Granger, sorry, Don Hedin’s illustrations … one from a(nother) family friend with the side next to the Tin Woodman cut and sticky-taped and pen colourings and the spine is blocked (all by me); and another where the cover is in better condition but much more vibrant.

    But I do agree (if this is what you say): he should have done MORE illustrations for the story, especially with certain characters and moments and events and places …

    Like

    1. It’s interesting that the White cover is the one you had, since it’s the cover I run across the least often. I know the first cover was in print up through the 60s.

      Yes, I do wish there had been more illustrations, because while I’m not a tremendous fan, I would still like to have seen his interpretation of Glinda.

      Like

  2. Huge fan of”Paul Granger” having grown up on the CYOA books. His illustrations were always my favorite aspect of the books themselves. There was something child-like and dark at the same time about his style.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s funny, I actually really do like a lot of his CYOA artwork, but for some reason his Oz has always left me cold. I definitely agree with his art having a strange darkness to it in CYOA, and had that been brought in in Oz, I might feel differently.

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s