Friday, 30 January 2009

Look & Learn style Venus: Lady Godiva

The first Look & Learn we owned, from 1967

Agent Triple P learnt much of what he knows about the world from the splendid magazine Look & Learn which he subscribed to from about 1967 until 1978. Indeed, much of our current knowledge about science has never really progressed beyond that period leaving us still believing that a Brontosaurus (which now no longer ever existed!) needed to stand in water to help support its weight. We should have had a Mars mission years ago, domestic robots and all sorts of other splendid things predicted for the world of the future (i.e. about 1999).

The best thing about Look & Learn, for a budding artist like Triple P, were the wonderful paintings on the cover and inside.

Artists Like Ron and Gerry Embleton and Angus McBride were the top illustrators of the time and produced some memorable covers with even more memorable headlines such as this one by Gerry Embleton entitled "captured by Chinese bandits!", one of my favourites.

We are lucky enough to own an original McBride, painted for Look & Learn of another famous woman from British history, Boadicea (none of this revisionist Boudicca nonsense). Best of all was the brilliant comic strip The Trigan Empire illustrated by Don Lawrence, original paintings of which now sell for thousands of pound. Sadly, the magazine folded in 1982 but recently a company acquired the rights to the magazine and the illustrations and came out with a 48 issue reprint of selected articles which Agent Triple P was very happy to be a founding subscriber to.

So we were amused to find this picture of Lady Godiva which has a real Look & Learn feel to it. Perhaps if Britain had been more like France in the 1960s Look & Learn would have used more naked women in their paintings! No doubt it would have looked something like this:

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