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Homepage. This page: A new title in 2010 from Mosaic Books.

Vintage Advertising - Old Automobiles.

Mosaic Books

Norman Clark.
Published 2010 (Hardback, with slip case, 530 pages).
Book cover

$187 US.

Mosaic Books.
Norm Clark has both a background in marketing and advertising, and a long-held passion for vintage posters, so producing this book - one of a series that focuses on hand-drawn illustrations in advertising - came very naturally to him. His primary interest is in the artwork and illustration methods used in the early years of the 20th Century; while he respects the work done in later years based on photography, his passion for the earlier, artistic, approach is clear from the outset.
The book comes in a smart slip case, as befits a book positioned at this end of the market, and runs to approximately 530 pages, full colour throughout apart from where only black and white examples of a particular advertisement could be found.
Following an introduction to Norm, and the key merits that he believes make a poster or advertisement achieve its goal(s), the reader is taken to the first examples of very early motoring artwork to be included in this publication. In all there are some 900+ pieces of artwork featured within the book's pages, with most if not all falling between the early 1900s, through to the 1950s. The majority though date to the pre-war era, when automotive illustration in the field of advertising was perhaps at its zenith. Therefore it will appear to any keen enthusiast of either vintage or veteran motoring.
The content is broadly in chronological order, although the flow does occasionally hop from one era or subject to another, perhaps to illustrate a point, rather than follow a strict year-on-year historical account. Each poster or advertisement is accompanied by Norm's notes on either the subject, the artist (where known) and in many cases, the social context to which that particular piece of artwork would have related.
As I've a keen interest in early motor-car advertising, I found this to be a superb piece of work and one that I can well understand took Norm some five years to put together. Motor racing posters are also featured throughout, with beauties from artists such as Geo Ham capturing the style of the era perfectly. The content isn't split into chapters, but is a rolling guide to advertising and the methods used to promote a message. Anyone looking for specific make(s) of car will find that the comprehensive index helps enormously in navigating this epic book.
I feel that Norm has put together something really quite special here in this, the first book of a series looking at early advertising illustration. No doubt subsequent titles to be released shortly will be of a similar high standard. The quality of the print and binding, not forgetting the attractive slip case, make this a book well worthy of consideration by any enthusiast of the pre- and immediate post-war era of motoring. This fascinating book is only available direct from Mosaic Books. Other titles due in this series, and no doubt also of interest to readers of this site, will look at advertising motorcycles, bicycles, and airlines.
Book on vintage car posters and advertising
RJ
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