Exhibits >> When Phantasie Takes Flight >> Modern

When comparing modern illustrators to Arthur Rackham’s work, it becomes clear that his influence transcends time and all forms of art. These works capture the similar snarling trees for which Rackham is singularly known as well as his muted, understated colors and simple life-like figures. The whimsical forest scenes of Rackham are present in the works of both Charles Vess and Michael Hague, two modern-day illustrators. Vess utilizes dark colors for grim undertones while Hague illustrates the balance between fantasy and reality (similar to Rackham’s version of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland). Rackham’s work is even referenced in films such as the Lord of the Rings trilogy and Pan’s Labyrinth, both of which contain elements of phantasmagoria, disturbing creatures, and contortionist trees.


Charles the Rhymer
Charles Vess
Thomas the Rhymer
from Charles Vess’ Drawing Down the Moon: The Art of Charles Vess
Dark Horse Books
9 ¼ in. x 7 in.
Baldwin Library of Historical Children’s Literature