Classic illustration enthusiasts were dismayed a while back to learn of the apparent demise of Bud Plant Illustrated books, a long-time collaboration between Jim Vadeboncoeur Jr. and Bud Plant that was a key source of out of print books about great classic illustrators and comics artists.
The good news turned out to be that Vadeboncoeur and Plant have simply taken their individual contributions into their own separate spaces, where they have been able to refocus their efforts.
Plant is selling a more focused selection of books at the new Bud’s Art Books site and Vadeboncoeur has retooled the venerable bpib.com web address as JVJ Publishing, featuring his absolutely beautiful magazines ImageS and Black & White ImageS, which I have raved about previously (and here).
In addition, Vadeboncoeur is continuing to maintain his terrific resource of classic illustrator biographies (image at left), which is one of the first places I look when researching a classic illustrator. The biographies are short, succinct and information and illustration dense.
Vadeboncoeur has been an important voice in the promotion of great classic illustration from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, from artists both well known and undeservedly obscure. One of the joys of ImageS magazine is the mixture of the familiar and unfamiliar; even devoted classic illustration aficionados will frequently be introduced to long lost gems by unfamiliar names.
Vadeboncoeur’s enthusiasm for great classic illustration and his obsessive attention to reproduction quality and image details make every issue of ImageS a treat.
Part of the good news about his recent makeover of the JVJ Publishing site is the inclusion of much larger preview images of the more recent issues, giving you a better taste of the issue’s contents (click on the covers for the pop-up previews). I have to stress, though, that they still don’t provide a realistic picture of the superb image quality of the issues themselves.
The first five issues of ImageS are sold out; issues 6 through 12 are still available. The first issue of ImageS Black & White is sold out; issues 2 through 5 are available.
(Images above: Lejaren A. Hiller, J.C. Leyendecker, Julius Diez, Frank Godwin, Henri-Jules-Ferdinand Bellery-Desfontaines)