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The Dutch Boy Painter


Published and Copyrighted by
111 Broadway, New York, NY

Volume XV, Number 2 - March 1922

It is remarkable when one stops to consider how real a thing is the personality of the Dutch Boy Painter. He is more than a merely skilful application of pigment on canvas. To millions he is a living character, quite as real as statesmen of whom they have read but never seen.

To one gazing at his heart-warming smile there comes the feeling that he could be none other than the exponent of beauty and purity and permanence. He inspires a certain confidence in his wares which once justified increases many fold. He is welcome wherever he has served and there is never need to introduce himself where he hasn't.

Such is the power of the established trade-mark when linked with a product of merit. The Dutch Boy Painter was the creation of the advertising manager of National Lead Company who gave specifications of his idea to a Dutch artist named Yook for the first preliminary sketches. The boy was intended at first only as an advertising character but later, when search began for a suitable national trademark, the late L. A. Cole, then president, suggested that the Dutch Boy Painter be adopted. This was done and one of Yook's pencil sketches was turned over to Lawrence Carmichael Earle, the noted portrait painter, with orders to embody the idea in an oil painting which would give the boy the breath of life. Earle was at that time living in Montclair, N. J., and it is an interesting fact that he executed his commission in the studio of the late George Inness, one of the greatest, if not the greatest, of American landscape painters. That was fifteen years ago.

On this page is a portrait of Mr. Earle, whose first-hand knowledge of Dutch folk enabled him to visualize his subject so exquisitely. Born in New York in 1845, he studied in Munich, Florence and Rome. After 1869 he painted steadily and before his death last year completed some notable canvases, but none we feel sure is more widely known and admired than the Dutch Boy Painter.

This month's cover of The Dutch Boy Painter magazine is a reproduction of Mr. Earle's canvas, photographed as it hangs in the board-of-directors' room of National Lead Company

Scan of actual article in context

*Thanks to Dr. J. Gray Sweeney for permission to use material from
Artists of Grand Rapids 1840-1980, J. Gray Sweeney; Grand Rapids, 1981:
The Grand Rapids Art Museum, The Grand Rapids Public Museum

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