William Blake was an English poet, Artist, and printmaker now known as a major figure of the Romantic age. During his life many of Blake's peers considered him mad, yet his creative often mythical Art was truly prophetic.
Rejecting most political and religious beliefs of his time Blake's artistic creations are uniquely expressive. Featuring spiritual and esoteric symbolism Blake created a rich world of watercolor, drawings and illustrations.
Born in London in 1757, Blake was a highly influential figure in the Romantic movement and is considered one of the greatest English poets and artists of all time. As a child, Blake showed an early interest in art and literature, and he began to write and draw at a young age. He was apprenticed to an engraver as a young man, and he used this training to develop his skills as a printmaker. In addition to his work as an artist, Blake was also a prolific poet, and he wrote and published a number of books of poetry throughout his career.
Blake was known for his unconventional beliefs and ideas, and his work often reflected his interest in spirituality and the supernatural. He believed in the power of imagination and the transformative nature of art, and his work was characterized by its vivid, dreamlike imagery and its mystical, spiritual themes.
Despite his talent and influence, Blake struggled to find a wide audience during his lifetime, and he remained largely unrecognized as an artist and poet until after his death in 1827. Today, however, he is widely celebrated as a major figure in the history of English literature and art, and his work continues to be widely studied and admired.
We have chosen some of our favorite visual work by William Blake and accompanying art resources.
The Ancient of Days, 1794, William Blake. The work originally published in 1794 as Europe a Prophecy shows Urizen stretching out a compass above the black void below. Image via wikepedia [[US-PD]] more information regarding the piece can be found on wikiart. There are at least thirteen known copies of the The Ancient of Days and each are hand colored by Blake.
The Lovers Whirlwind, William Blake, Pen and ink and watercolour, 1824 - 1827 [[US-PD]] Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Birmingham. The scene is from Dante's Divine Comedy, Hell, Canto V, 37-138.
The Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun , 1803 - 1805, William Blake. [[US-PD]] Brooklyn Museum, New York City, NY, US. Black ink and watercolor over traces of graphite and incised lines on wove paper. The Artist's subject matter is drawn from the book of Revelation (Rev. 12: 1-4).
" The Great Red Dragon and the Woman Clothed with the Sun" watercolor between 1805 and 1810. Rosenwald Collection NGA CC0 open source image 1943.3.8999. Adjusted and color corrected framed The Great Dragon print on Dark Art & Craft.