Top hats and flappers Top hats and flappers
In the 1920s there was a group of popular, irreverent illustrators/cartoonists who worked for the emerging humor magazines Judge, College Humor, Ballyhoo and Life. These artists attempted to capture the verve and excitement of their times with an energetic line and frenzied pen and ink panels containing multitudes with the settings and dress — downtown speakeasy or uptown Stork Club, hot jazz bands or windy jump seats, slinky dresses set against top hat and tails — just as revealing as the lost souls of the Lost Generation. Of these young ink-slingers, the one who came closest to capturing this white-hot age was a handsome man out of Omaha and Chicago named Russell Patterson. Unlike most of his contemporaries, Patterson didn't vanish after the Stock Market Crash in 1929. He just found new ways to keep his high style in front of a public desperate for light entertainment — in newspaper strips, magazine covers, posters, costumes and set designs for Hollywood and Broadway, amusement parks to WAC uniforms, all the way to the Atomic Age. One of the most influential artists of his generation, Patterson's impact spanned decades. Along with an introductory essay by illustration art historian Armando Mendez, this volume showcases Patterson at his pinnacle, featuring many of his most important and dynamic magazine covers and illustrations.