Letter to Painters: John Ohnimus 1906

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Mike Jackson
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Letter to Painters: John Ohnimus 1906

Post by Mike Jackson » Fri Apr 09, 2004 5:57 pm

John Ohnimus wrote the introduction for the 1906 Henderson's Sign Painter book. It is a little choppy reading but quite worth it. MJ

LETTER TO PAINTERS
All that is set down in the following pages must be taken for purely personal expressions of an opinion as to how signs could be done.

The main trend everywhere is to a decided suppression in all ornament and unnecessary detail on a direct line of pure simplicity. It is on this point that the workman and his customer ever differ, --but the fact remains unalterable that all work is being done towards a point of --- once and always --- selling his goods. Give the man a good, legible sign --- that is what he wants. His customers have one conception of an alphabet, containing all 26 letters --- they all plain; so the more they are used the more the successful does the announcement attract the public eye and lodge into the public mind.

With the sign upon the premises proper, the ornamented can be used, it standing more in the light of decoration, incidentally a guide. In pictorial the intent is to eliminate all detail. Get good drawing, and then hold it together attractively in simple, broad masses; the fewer colors the better it becomes in the manipulating advantages where it is to be reproduced many times. The public is at once interested in work done by this method, in the sheer individuality and invention displayed in what has been done, ---has been done well. Attempting to painting it in the detailed, natural way always fails through time limitations. Remember the public again; they have to read it. Remember the man who pays for it; give him values, or you will never see him again. Doing this, and thoughtfully, insistingly voicing your own views and desires whenever occasion allows, you cannot fail in any work you touch.

Color, --- well, if you don't know when it is in its right place, no one can or ever will make you see it.

There is nothing else to say; the making good is within you. Again, remember the man with the money, and he will remember you to give you the money. He knows when.

OHNIMUS.
Mike Jackson / co-administrator
Golden Era Studios
Vintage Ornamental Clip art
Jackson Hole, WY

Photography site:
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Tony Segale
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letter to painters

Post by Tony Segale » Sat Apr 10, 2004 7:06 pm

since this is my first reply or post on the new BB, this is also a test.

Pretty nice direction to be given with that post.
Thanks, Mike and Mr. Omnihus.
and he took that golden hair and made a sweater for baby bear.
http://www.tonysegale.com
http://www.tonysegale.wordpress.com

Mike Jackson
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ok

Post by Mike Jackson » Sun Apr 11, 2004 12:09 am

Hi Tony,
Even though some of Ohnimus' artwork was quite ornate, he knew how to make the design legible and how to pull the reader's eye to the center of attention. Much of the work I see around me, and word done of the DTP generation has lost touch with that concept. It is sad to see!...but maybe Ohnimus was seeing it his time, too.

Mike
Mike Jackson / co-administrator
Golden Era Studios
Vintage Ornamental Clip art
Jackson Hole, WY

Photography site:
Teton Images
Jackson Hole photography blog:
Best of the Tetons

Mike Jackson
Site Admin
Posts: 1802
Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2004 11:02 pm
Location: Jackson Hole, WY
Contact:

Re: Letter to Painters: John Ohnimus 1906

Post by Mike Jackson » Thu Apr 27, 2017 8:04 am

As of today, there are 70 pages of posts with 50 on a page on the Hand Lettering Forum. Try clicking on page 70, then page 69 and find an old post that interests you. If you see something, add to the comments and it will bump that old post all the way to the front page. Here's one from 2004...
Mike Jackson / co-administrator
Golden Era Studios
Vintage Ornamental Clip art
Jackson Hole, WY

Photography site:
Teton Images
Jackson Hole photography blog:
Best of the Tetons

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