Cecil Aldin’s ability to create the life and character of each individual dog and breed is unrivalled. Every painting is full of personality and humour. ‘The eyes say it all.’
Around 1900-14 he created sets of six caricature type humerous paintings, mainly foxhunting and racing. eg. The Fallowfield Hunt. The Blue Market Races. The Harefield Harriers. The Cottesmore Hunt. Nearly all were purely fictional, much to many people’s disappointment who would like to be able to name where these scenes took place today. Alas, this was not his intention and we shall never know! Today these are still sought after. Aldin was particularly fond of hunting, hence the large Hunting Countries which were produced from 1912-13 – 1925.
He wrote and illustrated well over 100 children’s books which also included many books, which although well suited to children, tend to be even more appreciated by adults of any age! His dog books continue to be reprinted today. Indeed probably the most popular book ‘A Dog Day’ was first published in 1902 and by 1950 had been republished 15 times. Today it is still available and continues to be republished! It has truly stood the test of time! Amongst some his most popular books are: Sleeping Partners, 40 Fine Ladies, Dogs of Character and Drawing Dogs.
His early works were published in periodicals ie. The Sketch, The Graphic, Illustrated London News to name but a few from c1892 and continued after his death in 1935.
He had ‘an eye’ for detail which is seen particularly in his serious studies of Horses, Dogs, Manor Houses and Cathedrals. Interestingly, many of his works will draw you back to the picture where you will continue to find another detail not first seen. What a talent.
Cecil Aldin also created designs of dogs and old English scenes which were to be used from the early 1900’s through to c1939 by Burslem, Royal Staffordshire and later Royal Doulton. These included tiles, jugs, plates, fruit bowls, vases etc. Many of which are highly sought after today by Collectors due to their rarity.
Occasionally available today are his original watercolours and pastels, including works on ivorene, limited edition etchings and pottery. More readily available are his prints, ephemera including cards, wooden coasters with dogs and hunting scenes. However, the list is long and occasionally unusual items appear.
I specialise in Cecil Aldin’s work in my Gallery and also am a Collector. Cecil Aldin’s eye for detail and humour I feel puts him in a league of his own.
For anyone interested in Cecil Aldin’s life and his works I recommend the following literature:
The Story of a Sporting Art by Roy Heron (The Bible) published 1981. The Sporting Art of Cecil Aldin by Roy Heron (1990). Cecil Aldin Dogs and Hounds by Rupert Collens (1990) and most importantly ‘Time I was Dead’ by Cecil Aldin (1934) which was published one year before his death in 1935.
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