Drawing Magazine Cover Countdown: #1

This fall, Drawing magazine is celebrating its 10th anniversary, and to get the festivities started, the Drawing Magazine Blog is looking back at our 10 favorite covers. To see the full list so far, check out the entire Drawing Magazine Blog.

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So, ready to see the best cover from Drawing magazine’s first 10 years? (According to our comprehensive, impeccably researched survey, at least?)

The artist who tops our list won’t come as a surprise to loyal readers of Drawing. He’s not only one of the greatest artists in American history but also one of the most influential, and countless contemporary draftsmen cite his work as an inspiration for their own efforts. The winner of our cover countdown is our fall 2006 issue, with a cover drawing courtesy of none other than John Singer Sargent:

Fall 2006 Drawing

This is one of my favorite portraits by Sargent. It’s remarkable how he does so much with such seemingly simple strokes and how he uses the strong side lighting to so clearly convey the form, with shadows that appear unified but are delicately toned. He just makes it look so easy.

This would be an outstanding drawing no matter who the sitter was, but in my opinion, it gains extra energy from the fact that the subject is also someone we know; an artist of a different sort. It’s the Irish poet W. B. Yeats, when he was still relatively young, years before he wrote most of the poems for which he is now best known, such as The Second Coming and Among School Children. One great artist, brought to life by another.

Thanks for sticking with us through this countdown, which has been a fun way for us to revisit some of our favorite artists. To see more of Drawing, subscribe here. And you can purchase or download our brand new 10th-anniversary issue here, which features artwork by some truly great artists, including Sargent!

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