THE ILLUSTRATORS TODAY : FOREMAN, MICHAEL RDI (Born 1938)

While Michael Foreman is perhaps best known as one of the most outstanding contemporary creators of children’s books, he is a wide-ranging artist, illustrating literary classics and working as a painter.

Michael Foreman was born in the read more...
While Michael Foreman is perhaps best known as one of the most outstanding contemporary creators of children’s books, he is a wide-ranging artist, illustrating literary classics and working as a painter.
Michael Foreman was born in the Suffolk fishing village of Pakefield on 21 March 1938. He studied art in Lowestoft, and in London at St Martin’s School of Art and the Royal College of Art. The latter awarded him a travel scholarship to the United States in 1963 and, following his graduation, he went back to Chicago to spend four months as Art Director of Playboy. In 1966, he returned to London to become Art Director for King, which had him produce all the illustrative work, in a variety of styles, even resorting to the use of pseudonyms. He has lectured at St Martin’s (1963-66), the London College of Printing (1966-68), the RCA (from 1968) and the Central School of Art (1972). On his discovery that he had purchased what was once John Hassall’s School of Art at Stratford Studios, he further followed in Hassall’s footsteps by becoming a member of the London Sketch Club.
From his first children’s book, The General (1961), Michael has treated his young readers as responsible and mature. This attitude of concern has made him a great original and has resulted in many honours.
Prizes have included the Aigle d’Argent at the Nice Festival International du Livre (1972), the National Art Library Illustration Award (1972 for Horatio and 1977 for Monkey and The Three Wizards), the Graphics Prize at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair (1982 for City of Gold), the Kurt Maschler Award (1982 for Sleeping Beauty and Other Favourite Fairy Tales), the Kate Greenaway Medal (1982 for Long Neck and Thunder Foot, 1983 for Sleeping Beauty and Other Favourite Fairy Tales and 1989 for War Boy) and the Nestlé Smarties Book Prize (Gold Award) (1993 for War Game). In 1985, he was elected Royal Designer to Industry.
In 1990, Michael had his first selling show, a greatly successful event at Chris Beetles Gallery. Centring upon his recent book, Michael Foreman’s World of Fairy Tales, it acted as a consolidation of his career to date. His recurring interest in environment – both in terms of visual atmosphere and as a human issue – was particularly patent in much of the work on show. Since then his work has been a regular feature of the annual exhibition, The Illustrators, mounted by the Gallery.
Michael finds regular inspiration in Cornwall, where he lives when not in London.
His work is represented in the collections of the V&A.
THE GREAT MCCONIGLE by MICHAEL FOREMAN

THE GREAT MCCONIGLE

IF THE CHILD WAS THAT STRONG HE COULD ONLY GUESS AT THE IMMENSITY OF THE FATHER  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

IF THE CHILD WAS THAT STRONG HE COULD ONLY GUESS AT THE IMMENSITY OF THE FATHER

SHE PICKED HIM UP IN HER ARMS AND SHE CARRIED HIM LIKE A BABY by MICHAEL FOREMAN

SHE PICKED HIM UP IN HER ARMS AND SHE CARRIED HIM LIKE A BABY

AMADA LOST NO TIME, JUMPED ON THE BULL'S BACK AND WITH HIS SWORD AGAIN HACKED AND HEWED by MICHAEL FOREMAN

AMADA LOST NO TIME, JUMPED ON THE BULL'S BACK AND WITH HIS SWORD AGAIN HACKED AND HEWED

THE STAG SCOFFED, THREW A MOUND OF EARTH IN THE AIR IN DISDAIN, THEN LIFTED AMADA UP ON HIS HORNS by MICHAEL FOREMAN

THE STAG SCOFFED, THREW A MOUND OF EARTH IN THE AIR IN DISDAIN, THEN LIFTED AMADA UP ON HIS HORNS

HE TOOK A BIG GOUT OF AIR AND JUMPED INTO THE SKY AS LIMBER AS A SHUTTLECOCK by MICHAEL FOREMAN

HE TOOK A BIG GOUT OF AIR AND JUMPED INTO THE SKY AS LIMBER AS A SHUTTLECOCK

BEFORE NIGHT I WILL HAVE KILLED THE SILVER CAT OF THE GLEN  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

BEFORE NIGHT I WILL HAVE KILLED THE SILVER CAT OF THE GLEN

IT WAS A PALACE OF PINK STONE WITH WATERFALLS ON EITHER SIDE AND PEACOCKS IN THE FRONT GARDEN UNFURLING THEIR TAILS AND LETTING OUT THEIR MYSTERIOUS CRIES by MICHAEL FOREMAN

IT WAS A PALACE OF PINK STONE WITH WATERFALLS ON EITHER SIDE AND PEACOCKS IN THE FRONT GARDEN UNFURLING THEIR TAILS AND LETTING OUT THEIR MYSTERIOUS CRIES

HE THEN MADE HIM DRINK FROM THE THREE BOTTLES AND OUT JUMPED THE KITTENS AND BOLTED UP THE CHIMNEY  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

HE THEN MADE HIM DRINK FROM THE THREE BOTTLES AND OUT JUMPED THE KITTENS AND BOLTED UP THE CHIMNEY

WHEN HE PUT HIS HANDS UP HE FOUND THAT HE HAD SPROUTED TWO GREAT HORNS by MICHAEL FOREMAN

WHEN HE PUT HIS HANDS UP HE FOUND THAT HE HAD SPROUTED TWO GREAT HORNS

SOON THERE WAS NOT A PERSON IN THE PALACE THAT HAD NOT SPROUTED HORNS  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

SOON THERE WAS NOT A PERSON IN THE PALACE THAT HAD NOT SPROUTED HORNS

EAMONN DANCED HOME WITH THE WOOD DANCING ALONG BESIDE HIM  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

EAMONN DANCED HOME WITH THE WOOD DANCING ALONG BESIDE HIM

A TAP FROM HIS CLUB SENT THEM TUMBLING TO THE GROUND 
AND THEY WERE SOON BEGGING HIM TO PASS ON, TO GO INTO 
THE CITY AND TO LEAVE THEM ALONE by MICHAEL FOREMAN

A TAP FROM HIS CLUB SENT THEM TUMBLING TO THE GROUND AND THEY WERE SOON BEGGING HIM TO PASS ON, TO GO INTO THE CITY AND TO LEAVE THEM ALONE

HE SAW THE DEVIL IN HIS BLACK ROBE, HIS FACE COVERED IN A BLACK CAUL AND HIS EYES LIKE TWO RED CINDERS by MICHAEL FOREMAN

HE SAW THE DEVIL IN HIS BLACK ROBE, HIS FACE COVERED IN A BLACK CAUL AND HIS EYES LIKE TWO RED CINDERS

THERE THEY WERE, CHEEK TO CHEEK AND BOSOM TO BOSOM DOING A HIGHLAND FLING  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

THERE THEY WERE, CHEEK TO CHEEK AND BOSOM TO BOSOM DOING A HIGHLAND FLING

WHEN THE DANES LEARNED THAT THE KING HAD GOT THE FLAIL OUT OF HELL THEY FLED THE COUNTRY AND TOOK TO THEIR SHIPS  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

WHEN THE DANES LEARNED THAT THE KING HAD GOT THE FLAIL OUT OF HELL THEY FLED THE COUNTRY AND TOOK TO THEIR SHIPS

MICK CALLED AND CALLED BUT ONLY THE CROW ANSWERED  by MICHAEL FOREMAN

MICK CALLED AND CALLED BUT ONLY THE CROW ANSWERED

THE BLUE BOTTLE by MICHAEL FOREMAN

THE BLUE BOTTLE

'LOOK, LOOK,' SAID ONE OF THEIR CHILDREN, AS TWO TINY SPRITES ROSE UP OUT OF THE BOTTLE by MICHAEL FOREMAN

'LOOK, LOOK,' SAID ONE OF THEIR CHILDREN, AS TWO TINY SPRITES ROSE UP OUT OF THE BOTTLE

HE SAW THE MARE AND THE BEAR AS BEFORE, STANDING BY THE MANGER IN A SULLEN AND MOROSE STATE by MICHAEL FOREMAN

HE SAW THE MARE AND THE BEAR AS BEFORE, STANDING BY THE MANGER IN A SULLEN AND MOROSE STATE