Henry, Sidney and Walter Paget
The three brothers Henry Marriott Paget, Sidney Edward Paget
and Walter Stanley Paget (there were also at least 2 other brothers
in the family) were all illustrators in the
magazines of the 1880s onwards, working with wash drawings in a fairly
realistic style. All three also painted, but their work is now largely forgotten.
Henry Marriott Paget RBA (1856-1936)
The oldest brother, Henry Paget was a painter of historical subjects and portraits. He was born in London, entered the Royal
Academy Schools in 1874, and exhibited at the Academy from 1879-94. His wife
Henrietta (nee Henrietta Farr) also painted. Henry Paget's paintings, especially
his historical scenes, were illustrative rather than inspiring. He also undertook
mythological subjects - Circe, Odysseus and so on.
As an illustrator, his high point was in the Balkan War of 1912-13, when he was illustrator
for the Sphere in Constantinople.
Portraits by Henry Paget include W. B. Yeats (1889) at the Ulster Museum,
and Prof. MacMullan (c. 1901-2) at the Queen's University, Belfast.
Sidney Edward Paget(1860-1908)
Sidney Paget was born in London, started drawing
at a young age, and studied from the antique at the British Museum for two years before
entering Heatherley's School of Art, and subsequently the Royal Academy Schools.
He had many pictures exhibited at the Royal Academy, his first when he was 18.
His subjects included landscapes and mythological subjects, with titles such
as A Perilous Passage and A Knight with Fairies. A more
impressive work was Outcast (1899), a rather grim picture showing a troupe of
cavemen in the snow.
Sidney Paget turned increasingly to black and white work from the 1890s.
He was important in that he was the illustrator
of Sherlock Holmes, choosing as his model his brother Walter. Despite
Conan Doyle complaining that his creation was not nearly so handsome,
most versions of Holmes - illustrated and on the screen - have continued
to be based on Paget's original. His other illustrative work included war subjects from
Egypt and the Sudan.
His illustrations can be found without difficulty in old books and magazines, and
a painting by him called Mountainous Landscape, carried out in a
conciously 'old master' style, is in Leeds City Art Gallery.
Walter Stanley Paget (1863-1935)
The youngest brother, signing himself as 'Wal Paget', was a gold medallist at the RA, and was described
as 'a good figure draughtsman, with a strong poetic feeling for landscape... working
with unconventional, fresh composition'. He also turned to drawing for the books and magazines, producing
coloured illustrations of pretty girls, rather feeble rustic interiors,
and easy-to-view scenes of country life, soldiers and girls, and courting couples.
He had a keen sense of correct costume for his figures, as shown to advantage
in many of his illustrations, for example to Robinson Crusoe in the early 1890s.
Illustration by Wal Paget.
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