Lewis Jones - a biography - the 1930s

 Home   Contact Mooch   Diary/Blog   Memoirs   Trips
  Prev   Next
  childhood   1910s   1920s   1930s   1940s   1950s   designs   references   -   WW1-1   WW1-2   -   Moda   Warners
Annie and Lewis Jones c1934, at 74 Bushey Mill Crescent
Annie and Lewis Jones (Nance & Jack) by the French windows at 74 Bushey Mill Crescent. c1934

Annie and Lewis with their son Dennis, mid 1930s Annie and Lewis with their son Dennis in a cine film from the mid 1930s.

During the 1920s Lewis suffered bouts of fever because of the Malaria he had caught in Greece during WWI. He sometimes had to take days off work because of shivering - a serious problem for an artist depending on his hands. Also, the textile trade was in trouble in 1930 and Lewis Jones' salary was cut by 50%. Only by harsh economy did his family survive. They paid only the interest on their mortgage and sublet rooms in their house to a young couple, Mr & Mrs Mayes, Len and Maud (known as Janey), who became lifelong friends.

Lewis did all his own preparation work for every stage of producing his designs. For each finished design he would dampen cartridge paper and lay it on a drawing board, and then seal the edges with gummed tape. Once dry it gave a smooth surface that did not crinkle when water colours were applied. The Silver Studio bought Tempera Colours in powder form which were moistened and ground with a palette knife. Crystals of gum arabic were dissolved to add to the colours to fix them. Backgrounds for designs were usually washes of watercolour; these were sold in small bottles labelled 'Aerograph Colours'. All the colours were of course 'flat' and small squares of each colour used, known as the 'Tally', were usually positioned below each finished design. Lewis Jones would start a design on lightweight 'detail' paper, and using thin sticks of Vine Charcoal he would plan the finished artwork. He had the ability to work with a stick of charcoal in each hand and could produce mirror images when drawing scrolls.

Roy Passano, Lewis Jones and ANO, artists at the Silver Studios in the 1930s.
Roy Passano, Lewis Jones and ANO, artists at the Silver Studio in the 1930s.

On economic recovery the late 1930s became prosperous years and Lewis Jones most prolific period. He produced about 100 designs per year in this period. In the 1930s, Lewis travelled daily from Watford to the Studios by train and then bus to Brook Green, Hammersmith, and took sandwiches for lunch. He worked in a room on his own and some days he never spoke to anyone until he went home. He told of how he fed a mouse which came out of the wall until one day he found the mouse dead. It had been killed by the cleaning lady, so he nailed her slippers to the floor in revenge.
  Prev   Next
  childhood   1910s   1920s   1930s   1940s   1950s   designs   references   -   WW1-1   WW1-2   -   Moda   Warners
Home  Home   Contact Mooch   Diary/Blog   Memoirs   Trips   Fun   Copyright

05-Apr-2012..04-Oct-2015  © www.mooch.org.uk 2015 copyright www.mooch.org.uk 2015