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Monday, July 21, 2014

Marcia Lane Foster

Artist Marcia Lane Foster contributed illustrations to Collins Magazine for Boys and GirlsCollins Magazine Annual, the BBC Children's Hour Annual, Girl Annual and Robin Annual as well as many children's books.

She was born Nellie Marcia Lane Foster in Seaton, Devon, on 27 August 1897, the daughter of Llewellyn T. (Henry) Foster and Ellen Foster. She was raised in Didsbury, South Manchester, Lancashire, where her father, the son of a retired officer in the Dragoon Guards, worked as an electrical engineer, alongside her elder sisters Ethel Loveday Lane Foster (1893-1967) and Wilmot Gwenellen Lane Foster (1896-1974).

She studied at the St John's Wood School of Art and simultaneously at the Royal Academy Schools and the Central School of Arts and Crafts under Noel Rooke. At the latter she was awarded a silver medal for figure painting.

Her favourite medium was woodcuts and in Contemporary English Woodcuts, Campbell Dodgson (Keeper of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum) said of her: "The older tradition of English illustration may be traced in the graceful 'Echo' of Mr. [C. T.] Nightingale, and in the specimen which we give of Miss Marcia Lane Foster, latest scion of a family whose artistic traditions go back, through Richard and William Lane, to Gainsborough." The "example given" was entitled The Organ Grinder. Herbert Furst and Malcolm Salaman, were also keen on her engravings and published them in books on the subject.

For some twenty years she worked for William Hollins & Co. designing children's wear advertisements for Viyella and Clydella, and advertising material for Kodak, Cadbury, Nestle, TCP, Bovril and Clark's Shoes.

She was an occasional portrait painter as well as illustrating many books. These include The Headswoman by Kenneth Grahame and translations of stories by Anatole France during the 1920s. She illustrated titles for both Noel Streatfeild (The Children of Primrose Lane, 1947, and the serial The Painted Garden, Collins Magazine for Children, 1948) and her cousin-in-law Kitty Barne (Marion Catherine Streatfeild).

According to The Dictionary of British Book Illustrators, "The publication of Let's Do It (1938), a collection of charcoal sketches of children at play in a similar vein to J. H. Dowd's People of Importance (1934), established her reputation as an artist who could capture the lively movement of children and this (slightly to her regret) determined to a large extent the subsequent character of her commissions."

Popular authors illustrated by Foster include Enid Blyton, Christine Pullein-Thompson, Malcolm Saville and Lorna Hill. The Vicarage Children by Hill was recently (2008) reprinted by Girls' Gone By. The Summer in Between by Eleanor Spence (1959), which she illustrated, was awarded the Book of the Year in 1960 by The Children's Book Council of Australia.

In 1962, Foster was also responsible for drawing the adventures of The Tufty Club for the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents as it expanded into a nationwide children's club of 60,000 members.

She married illustrator Howard Dudley Jarrett in Bodmin, Cornwall, in 1925. She died in Yeovil, Somerset, in late 1983, aged 86. Her husband predeceased her in 1980 and they are buried together in Blessed Virgin Mary Churchyard, Bruton, Somerset.

PUBLICATIONS


Books
Lets Do It: Sketches of Children. London, Collins, 1938.

Illustrated Books
The Headswoman by Kenneth Grahame. London, John Lane, 1921; New York, Dodd, Mead & Co., 1922. 
Canadian Fairy Tales by Cyrus Macmillan. London, John Lane, 1922; omnibus with other titles, Canadian Wonder Tales, London, Bodley Head, 1974.
The Merry Tales of Jacques Tournebroche by Anatole France, trans. by Alfred Allinson. London, John Lane, 1923.
Tinkelly Winkle by Netta Syrett. London, John Lane, 1923.
The Golden Journey of Mr. Paradyne by William J. Lockie. London, John Lane, 1924.
Little Sea Dogs and other tales of childhood by Anatole France, trans. by Alfred Allinson & J. Lewis May. London, John Lane, 1925; New York, Dodd, Mead & Co., 1925.
Baa-Baa. London, Humphrey Milford, 1926.
Gee-Gee. London, Humphrey Milford, 1926.
Moo-Moo. London, Humphrey Milford, 1926.
Farmyard Friends by Lucy Diamond. London, Humphrey Milford/Oxford University Press, 1926.
The Children's Treasury. London, Thomas Nelson, 1929.
The Wise Little Goat. London, Ginn, 1932.
The Land of Many Delights by Wentworth Hill. London, James Nisbet. 1933.
The 'Everyday' Books. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1937-43.
The Valley in the Woods by Roger Noakes. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1947.
The Children of Primrose Lane by Noel Streatfeild. London, Collins, 1947.
Dandelion Cottage by Carroll Rankin. London, Evans Bros., 1948.
Dusty's Windmill by Kitty Barne. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1949.
We Hunted Hounds by Christine Pullein-Thompson. London, Collins, 1949.
Blackfoot Lagoon by James Kinross. London, Gryphon Books, 1950.
To Be a Ballerina and Other Stories by Pamela Brown. London, Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1950.
Family Playbill by Pamela Brown. London, Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1951.
Barbie by Kitty Barne. London, J. M. Dent & Sons, 1952.
The Television Twins by Pamela Brown. London, Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1952.
Harlequin Corner by Pamela Brown. London, Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1953.
The Ambermere Treasure by Malcolm Saville. London, Lutterworth Press, 1953.
Code Word-Bontry by Lane Mitchell. London & Glasgow, Blackie & Son, 1953.
Lions in the Potting Shed by Margaret Baker. Leicester, Brockhampton Press, 1954; as Lions in the Woodshed, New York, MacGraw-Hill Book Co., 1955.
Paris Adventure by Viola Baylay. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1954.
The Windmill Family by Pamela Brown. London, Thomas Nelson & Sons, 1954.
How to be a Better Parent by Peter & Sylvia Duncan. London, Evans Bros., 1955.
Rosina and Son by Kitty Barne. London, Evans Bros., 1956.
Acorns and Aerials by Margaret Baker. Leicester, Brockhampton Press, 1956.
A Crown of Hope by Godfrey Winn. London, National Spastic Society, 1956.
Kashmir Advenure by Viola Baylay. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1956.
The Open Book by Pamela Whitlock. London, Collins, 1956.
Corsican Adventure by Viola Baylay. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1957.
Nicky Goes Ashore by M. C. Carey. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1957.
Turkish Adventure by Viola Bayley. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1957.
Lebanon Adventure by Viola Bayley. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1958.
The Shadow on the Wall by Viola Bayley. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1958.
Underground Alley by William Mayne. London, Oxford University Press, 1958.
Family Gold Rush by Hilda Sinopy. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1959.
Swedish Adventure by Viola Bayley. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1959.
The Summer in Between by Eleanor Spence. London, Oxford University Press, 1959.
Happy Day Stories by Enid Blyton. London, Evans Bros., 1960.
Jill is a Bridesmaid by Frederick Le Grice. Westminster, Church Information Office, 1960.
Mission on the Moor by Viola Bayley. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1960.
A Pink Robin Story Book, illus. with Paddie Spratley. London, Longacre Press, 1961.
Round-Up on Exmoor by Mary de la Mahotiere. London, Lutterworth Press, 1961.
The Vicarage Children by Lorna Hill. London, Evans Bros., 1961.
London Adventure by Viola Baylay. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1962.
My Bible Story by Gladys Plummer. London, Longmans, 1963.
The Tufty Club by Elsie Mills. RoSPA, 1963.
Benjamin's Brothers by Gladys Plummer. London, Longmans, Green & Co., 1963.
The Baby and the Princess by Gladys Plummer. London, Longmans, Green & Co., 1964.
Griff and Tommy and the Golden Image by John Hubert Griffiths. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1964.
Italian Adventure by Viola Baylay. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1964.
Scottish Adventure by Viola Baylay. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1965.
The Team from Low Moor by Gillian Baxter. London, Evans Bros., 1965.
The Second Tufty Club Book by Elsie Mills. London, RoSPA, 1965?
Welsh Adventure by Viola Bayley. London, J. M. Dent & Co., 1966.

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