Thursday, 27 March 2014

A Day in the Life of Jean Harlow....

  I have absolutely no doubt in my mind that the scenes I have illustrated featuring our cute, glamorous Ms Harlow would definitely have really happened during her career.

  I have taken a lot of these illustration photos from my Instagram so they do have various boarders and filters. They are also photos of my work and not scans. As soon as I scan them I have plans to do prints and postcard sets for my Shop

Jean  runs through her lines with a cup of coffee...

Dinner at Eight 1933

  Creating this little collection has been a welcome break from doll making this week. All that stuffing, and felting, tea dying, stitching and unpicking, takes it's toll on my hands (which I don't take enough take of) so I have given my paws a welcome rest in favour of this pen and ink experiment. I love trying new ways of working and I have so enjoyed creating these sweet scenes of Jean Harlow as she goes about her daily routines. 

  I wanted them to be cute and funny like the kind of quick and quirky daily comic strips you got in old 20's or 30's magazines or newspapers. I am hugely inspired by illustrators such as Anne H Fish,  Russ Westover (who created Tillie the Toiler) and the early works of Alfred Bestall (who later went on to do the illustrations for that cute little bear Rupert)...

 Thinking about the beauty procedures Jean may have had to put herself through made for a very funny morning of sketching...

I'm not sure if Jean really washed her hair in Lux flakes but it is documented that it was used as part of the bleaching concoction..... sure makes for a cute illustration though.

Jean Harlow sat under one of those darn contraptions in Libelled Lady 1936 with Spencer Tracy

This particular Permanent Wave Machine was first introduced in the early 1930's

 ..Pen and ink on watercolour paper..

  In 1936 William Powell (the love of Jean's life) gave her a huge sapphire ring. I just had to add that lovely nugget of information amongst my illustrations.

  The very ring..

  Jean at her dressing table....

With the very dashing William Powell

  Ever since I can remember I have always loved a series of illustrations featuring the same heroine or main character. I'm never content with just one picture, I need to see that character in a variety of different scenes. This is one of the reasons I love children's books - especially old ones. Watching a character move through a story in a sequence of different scenarios and outfits is very satisfying. 

Various quick photos of the work in progress.

  I have lots more Jean sketches to complete including little sketches of her playing tennis and golf, having tea with Myrna Loy and a date with Mr Powell. They are just sketches at the moment but I hope to add them to the collection once they have their coat of pen and ink.



  1. oooohhh! I love these so much! Can't wait for the prints and postcards!!

    1. Thankyou so much Debi. Yes I'm excited too. Not sure how many there are going to be in a set, as my sketches just keep coming and coming! I will pick the best ones for the collection once I think I'm done. Have a lovely weekend.

  2. Oh my goodness Sarah! Your dolls and drawings are amazing!

    Due to some silly bug I am not able to follow you, but I have bookmarked your blog!
    Thanks for sharing your wonderful art!


    1. Thankyou Lindsay. I almost fainted when I stumbled upon your blog. It's absolutely perfect. All those beautiful snippets of old Hollywood glamour tips make for a fascinating read. You look amazing too! X

  3. The photo of Jean at the table with Wm Powell is great! That wall board is so cool behind the table - wonder what restaurant this would have been -