Friday, June 10, 2011

Minnie Dibdin Spooner: Illustrations for The Golden Staircase

These illustrations come from an impressive book published in 1906, titled The Golden Staircase: Poems and Verses for Children (G. P. Putnam's Sons), selected by Louey Chisholm, and illustrated by Minnie Dibdin Spooner. There are sixteen illustrations, including the frontispiece, plus the wonderful book cover itself.

I spent approximately eight hours over the course of four or five days copying and working with the images and posting them at my tumblr blog, The Art of Narrative. Work included straightening, cropping, adjusting the color and contrast, resizing the images, and identifying the poem each image illustrates through the volume's index.

Here's a link to the illustrations at my tumblr, The Art of Narrative.

Here's a link to the source of the illustrations at the Internet Archive, where you can read the poems and view the images in their original context.

I could not find a lot of information on Minnie Dibdin Davison Spooner (1867-1949), other than the fact she was a painter, a sculptor, and a designer. This article on her husband, Charles Spooner, a Scottish architect and designer, will give you some background about her.

There is also a brief article on Minnie Dibdin Spooner here, that adds to the information about her credentials, and the work she did with her husband designing, furnishing, and decorating churches.

Click on each image for greater detail.



Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
Frontispiece and Title Page
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906




Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Land of Counterpane by Robert Louis Stevenson
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906




Minnie Dibdin Spooner
Good-night and Good-morning by Lord Houghton
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
Wynken, Blynken, and Nod by Eugene Field
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Lost Doll by Charles Kingsley
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906






Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Lamb by William Blake
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Camel's Hump by Rudyard Kipling
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906




Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Babes in the Woods by Unknown
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906




Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Imps in the Heavenly Meadow by Kate Bunce
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
Lochinvar by Sir Walter Scott
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
Lucy Gray by William Wordsworth
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Lady Clare by Lord Tennyson
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906




Minnie Dibdin Spooner
A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
The Forsaken Merman by Matthew Arnold
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906





Minnie Dibdin Spooner
Baby by George MacDonald
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906






Minnie Dibdin Spooner
A Carol for Christmas Eve by Unknown
The Golden Staircase ~ 1906

6 comments:

  1. When I copied this post from a companion blog to this blog, I wasn't able to import the comments, so I'm copying them here:


    Lori said...
    These images are amazing, Annie.
    Tuesday, March 15, 2011 7:03:00 AM

    Annie said...
    Hi Lori,
    Thank you. I'm glad you enjoyed them. She's apparently illustrated more, but it's difficult to find much of her work on the internet.
    Wednesday, March 16, 2011 3:59:00 PM

    Terresa said...
    Oh, these are beautiful illustrations! Loved the wintery Minnie Dibdin Spooner/Lucy Gray by William Wordsworth/The Golden Staircase ~ 1906 the best, although the mother/daughter kiss spoke to me, too.

    Hope you've been well & in books!! :)
    Tuesday, March 22, 2011 12:34:00 AM

    Annie said...
    Hi Terresa,

    Those are two of my favorites, too. There's something about the Lucy Gray illustration that gets to me, and it reminds me of one of Arthur Rackham's illustrations, Catskin, even though the two girls look completely different, and the young woman in Rackham's illustration is more confident than despondent. I find the angel one makes me smile, and I like Wynken, Blynken and Nod because I used to read it to my son.
    Tuesday, March 22, 2011 1:13:00 AM

    Larry MacDougall said...
    Terrific ! Thanks for sharing.
    Wednesday, April 27, 2011 4:28:00 PM

    Annie said...
    Hi Larry,

    Thank you. My blog is primarily about the writing process, and the concept of creativity, but I sometimes post illustrations I enjoy.
    Thursday, April 28, 2011 11:05:00 AM

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you for introducing me to Minnie Dibdin Spooner's work. I have used 'The Land of Counterpane' to illustrate my latest post.
    http://astrologymonami.com/2013/04/14/aries-new-moon-creating-the-new-world/

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous13:19

    I have come across a book of illustrations by M. Dibdin Spooner. It is a small book of Poems from Wordsworth, no date or much information, other than printed in Edinburgh. It looks as if it has been handmade , with some pages not even cut, but the illustrations are lovely. It is my first introduction to her work and I am impressed. (Rackham is also my favourite illustrator of this period) I would love to know more about this little book ;when it was printed? Does anyone know it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, I researched your book and found a reference to it in WorldCat, where you can find a listing of two editions currently in the world's libraries: http://www.worldcat.org/title/poems-of-wordsworth-illustrated-by-m-dibdin-spooner/oclc/503802098/editions?referer=di&editionsView=true

      According to WorldCat, your book was published in 1910 by T. C. & E. C. Jack in Edinburgh. I'd love to see the illustrations. They don't seem to be published anywhere on the Internet.

      Delete
  4. Are you still interested in M D Spooner 5 years on. I have some information on her.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! You wrote quite a few months ago, so I hope you see this reply. Please share...

      Delete

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