Tag Archives: death

RIP: Bernie Fuchs


The illustration world recently lost one of it’s brightest stars, Bernie Fuchs.  Here’s a portion of his obituary from the New York Times that covers some of his wonderful accomplishments:

Mr. Fuchs’s work, once a mainstay of leading magazines like Good Housekeeping, McCall’s, TV Guide and Sports Illustrated, featured meticulous renderings of the clothes and coiffures of men from dinner jackets to cardigans, and of women from house dresses to cocktail dresses.

In the 1960s and ’70s, Mr. Fuchs’s alluring illustrations for fiction and nonfiction articles on themes of romance, adventure and sports, typically capturing clean-cut men and women of the middle and upper-middle classes in candid and naturalistic poses, established a stylistic standard for editorial and advertising art of the day. His portraits of John F. KennedyLyndon B. Johnson and later United States presidents were more human in both pose and expression than most other official portraits.

When Kennedy’s portrait was finished, the president was so delighted that he had it sent to the Soviet Union as part of a traveling exhibition. Johnson, however, was stone faced when he saw his portrait for the first time. Mr. Fuchs showed him putting his glasses in his suit pocket; apparently the president did not want anyone to know he wore glasses.

Mr. Fuchs (pronounced Fewks) was a prominent member of a group of illustrators called the Westport school, because for years many of them lived in and around Westport. His work was so popular that it was routinely mimicked by illustrators and students. He was not bothered by creative pilfering and shared his methods and techniques, first as an instructor for the Famous Artists School, one of the best-known correspondence courses, and later as a founder of the Illustrators Workshop. The Ivy League of commercial art programs, the workshop was taught by the illustrators Alan E. Cober, Fred Otnes, Mark English, Robert Heindel and Bob Peak. Artists from all over the country applied to study there with Mr. Fuchs.

Read the entire write-up of his life here.