Boys Playing Leapfrog by Norman Rockwell
June 28, 1919 Issue of The Saturday Evening Post
Boys Playing Leapfrog, this Norman Rockwell painting, appeared on the cover of The Saturday Evening Post published June 28, 1919.
This painting was Rockwell's twentieth overall picture featured on the cover of The Post and the sixth Rockwell cover in 1919. The Post featured a Rockwell illustration on its cover eleven times in 1919.
The location of the original oil on canvas painting is not known.
This painting has reproduced in two Rockwell commentary books, as illustration 116 of Norman Rockwell: Artist and Illustrator by Thomas Buechner and on page 80 of Norman Rockwell, A Definitive Catalogue by Laurie Norton Moffatt.
Original copies of this magazine cover in pristine condition are rare. I have seen copies in very fine condition that have sold for well over one hundred dollars on eBay.
And it only cost a nickel when it was new.
Boys Playing Leapfrog
Norman Rockwell uses this painting to help us visualize one of the joys of childhood.
That joy is being able to entertain oneself.
Here we see two schoolboys playing a quick game of leapfrog. Judging by the stack of books, the two boys are on their way home from school.
It looks as if they are playing a variation of traditional leapfrog.
In the traditional game, the person offering his back as a springboard is facing the direction of the jump. In this picture, the boy is facing to one side instead.
Boys Playing Leapfrog 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 jumping boy is followed by his dog. The dog is hot on his heels.
In addition to the old clothes worn by the boys, another Rockwell trademark appears in the painting. The big toe on the jumping boy's left foot sports a bandage.
(Image Only) Copyright © 1919 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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