Colonial Couple Under Mistletoe by Norman Rockwell
December 19, 1936 Issue of The Saturday Evening Post
Colonial Couple Under Mistletoe, this Norman Rockwell painting, appeared on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post published December 10, 1936.
Alternate titles for this painting is just Mistletoe, Under the Mistletoe and Feast for the Traveler.
This painting was Rockwell's 171st overall of 322 pictures featured on the cover of The Post. Rockwell's career with the Post spanned 47 years, from his first cover illustration, Boy With Baby Carriage in 1916 to his last, Portrait of John F. Kennedy, in 1963.
This was also the ninth Rockwell cover in 1936. The Post featured a Rockwell illustration on its cover nine times in 1936.
This painting also appears in two Rockwell commentary books. It appears:
It also appears in Covers of the Saturday Evening Post by Jan Cohn on page 162 in color.
The original oil on canvas painting was originally given to Col. Russell P. Reeder Jr by Rockwell and is now part of a private collection. It was sold at auction by Sotheby's for $752,000 on December 3, 2009.
The original cover price was just five cents, although now a magazine in new condition sometimes sells for over one hundred dollars.
Colonial Couple Under Mistletoe
Here is another classic Norman Rockwell Christmas illustration.
Christmas is about love. This painting is also about love, albeit a different kind of love.
The lady in this painting is just about to go serve whatever is in the pewter vessel. She has the vessel carefully balanced on her tray.
The tray is also laden with decorative holly sprigs. Holly sprigs are a Norman Rockwell trademark in Christmas paintings, especially from this period of his work.
She has a delighted look on her face. Her suitor has just snuck up behind her with a sprig of mistletoe.
Her beau has apparently just arrived. He has dropped his satchel on the floor because he has seen her.
He is still dressed in his warm outdoor garb. I love the hat with the large feather stuck in it. His red tunic really makes him look the dandy.
His pistol sticking out the front and his sword sticking out the back suggest that he is ready for any dangers the road may present.
Colonial Couple Under Mistletoe was only one of 322 Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post covers; Here is the list of Norman Rockwell Saturday Evening Post cover illustrations.
Here is the complete list of all Norman Rockwell magazine covers.
The bottom of his tunic looks like it has some unmelted snow on it, as do his boots. Another suggestion of the holiday season from the master storyteller of illustration.
He harvested some mistletoe on his way to see her. Now it's time to put it to good use. He is puckered and just waiting for her to respond.
Will she respond favorably?
(Image Only) Copyright © 1936 Saturday Evening Post & Curtis Publishing Company
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Do you have a personal story about this painting? Do you know the model personally? Do you have a different take on the commentary?
Norman Rockwell Quotes:
I'll never have enough time to paint all the pictures I'd like to.
No man with a conscience can just bat out illustrations. He's got to put all his talent and feeling into them!
Some people have been kind enough to call me a fine artist. I've always called myself an illustrator. I'm not sure what the difference is. All I know is that whatever type of work I do, I try to give it my very best. Art has been my life.
Right from the beginning, I always strived to capture everything I saw as completely as possible.
The secret to so many artists living so long is that every painting is a new adventure. So, you see, they're always looking ahead to something new and exciting. The secret is not to look back.
I can take a lot of pats on the back. I love it when I get admiring letters from people. And, of course, I'd love it if the critics would notice me, too.
You must first spend some time getting your model to relax. Then you'll get a natural expression.
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