This piece is one of six illustrations comprising Jessie Willcox Smith's pictorial story "The Child in a Garden," which was published in Scribner's Magazine in 1903. Other subjects in the series include The Green Door, Five O'Clock Tea, The Garden Wall, Among the Poppies and The Spruce Tree.
According to Edward Nudelman, bibliographer of Jessie Willcox Smith, the illustrations for "The Child in A Garden," including the image presented here, were also reproduced as prints in 1904 by Fox, Duffield as well as pictorial postcards the following decade, issued by Reinthal and Newman (Jessie Willcox Smith: A Bibliography, pp. 169, 173), but never appeared in any of her book illustrations.
"The Child in a Garden," Scribner's Magazine, December 1903, p. 690, illustrated.
E.D. Nudelman, Jessie Willcox Smith: A Bibliography, Gretna, Louisiana, 1989, p. 153.
Reinthal & Newman, Pubs. N.Y. Postcard Illustration
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See all original artwork by Jessie Willcox Smith
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Jessie Wilcox Smith never married, but throughout her long career, specialized in drawing and painting mothers, babies and children. Her training was acquired at the School of Design for Women, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts with Thomas Eakins, and at the Drexel Institute under Howard Pyle.
She had begun as a kindergarten teacher but turned to an art career with the stimulus and assistance of Howard Pyle. Some of her best-known illustrations were for books: Little Women, Heidi, A book of Old Stories and Robert Louis Stevenson's A Child's Garden of Verses. She also painted a great many illustrations for magazines such as Collier's and McClure's, and did nearly 200 covers for Good Housekeeping. For several years, she shared house and studio with two other Pyle students, Elizabeth Shippen Green and Violet Oakley. Working in close proximity they also strongly influenced eachother's work as well as that of several other Pyle - school women. This relationship is told in The Red Rose Girls by Alice Carter. Smith painted and exhibited widely, revieving many awards, a Silver Metal at the 1915 Panama-Pacific Exposition in San Francisco. She was also commissioned to paint many portraits of children.
Two other biographies, Jessie Wilcox Smith by S. Michael Schnessel, and Jessie Wilcox Smith American Illustrator by Edward D. Nudelman (who also contributed A bibliography) have been published.