The illustrated covers of the old Saturday Evening Post seem like everybody’s memories. Milkmen clothed in white uniforms still deliver gallons of fresh milk. Boys swim in the old swimming hole. Public servants, like police and fire fighters, are relaxed and friendly. They also show images of a time long gone when there was such a thing as penny candy and a kid had some agonizing decisions to make, like in the picture above.
One of the artist we associate with the Saturday Evening Post was Norman Rockwell. His pictures were wry and tender all at the same time, with a sense of humor that guaranteed the images would be more than just sentimental. Besides, every has a favorite Norman Rockwell picture that always makes them smile.
Rockwell was a master of facial expressions and his skill in rendering human emotion was unsurpassed. The people inhabiting his canvasses are happy, wistful, unsure, hopeful, curious, and ecstatic. You can see it in the glitter of the eye and the slump of a shoulder. He didn’t spare himself, either, when he depicted himself at the canvas. Notice the self-portraits he included for reference, tacked to the right side of the self-portrait-in-progress.
(The entire post is here, on Dover Publication’s Medium website)