London: Collins, 1938. 8vo. Original qtr. Blue morocco and slipcase, fine. One of 50 copies signed by author and artist with an original signed drawing by Frank H. Mason.
The Illustrative Art of Frank H. Mason
by Gordon Howsden
During the first half of the 20th century Frank Henry Mason was arguably Britain's finest marine painter. He was also a highly skilled landscape painter, etcher and poster designer. As so often with artists whose talent encompasses several genres, Mason's commercial art has received much less attention.
Mason, who was born in Seaton Carew, Co. Durham on 1 October 1875, did not have any formal art training, receiving just a basic school education before spending two years from the age of 12 on the naval training ship HMS Conway. The initial idea of a life at sea gave way to a fascination with engineering and it was whilst employed by Parson's in Scarborough that his interest in sketching became a passion.
He received some guidance from local Scarborough artists and after successfully selling some of his work Mason decided to give up engineering and become a full time painter. He was aged about 22 at the time. A few years later he made regular trips up the coast and joined the influential Staithes group of artists, of which Laura Knight was a prominent member. Item #16-3540