Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Edward Hopper: Painter of Light and Shadow

Edward Hopper: Painter of Light and Shadow

Susan Goldman Rubin
Nonfiction Picture Book
For ages 9 to 12
Harry N. Abrams, 2007   ISBN: 978-0810993471

Edward Hopper was a quiet boy who loved books and who spent a great deal of his time drawing the world around him. From an early age, he was draw to capturing simple scenes of daily life, and when he grew up he painted similar scenes showing people reading, playing the piano, making a bed, and sitting in a restaurant.

From an early age, Edward knew that he wanted to be a painter, but his parents worried that he would not be able to make a living as a painter, and they encouraged him to study to be an illustrator instead. Edward studied at the Chase School in New York City, and he was one of the school's star pupils. He was even asked to teach there. This he did for a while, but he soon moved on to doing illustration work.

Creating cover designs for magazines did not appeal to Edward, and with the support of his parents, Edward set of for Paris in 1906 to continue his art studies. Though he did often make a living by doing illustrative work, first and foremost Edward was always a painter from this moment on. He was delighted when his paintings sold so well that he was finally able to set aside illustrative work. Being able to dedicate his time to the art he wanted to create gave Edward Hopper the freedom he always wanted.

In this marvelously written book, the author gives her readers a real sense of what Edward Hopper was like. Art enthusiasts will find out why Hopper chose certain subjects to paint and what inspired him.

Photos of Hopper's artworks, and those of his contemporaries, can be found throughout the book.