I was planning to do a random image amnesty today, which would have been a collection of fabulous posters that I have picked up but not managed to jemmy into a blog post, and which are all now idly shuffling their feet in the great image waiting room which is my computer desktop.
Except I’m not going to, because this one was first.
Which meant I got distracted by thoughts of just what a great designer Royston Cooper was and went off to explore. So now this post is made up of what I found along the way.
Mostly this was lots of lovely posters. Like these from 1962, 1959 and 1962 again.
He’s probably best known for his Keep Britain Tidy posters. This one from 1962 is the one you find most often,
including at the bottom of our stairs. But the later (1965) pelican is also fine.
What’s intriguing about searching for him online is that, unusually, the vast majority of results came from auctions. There are a few pieces of his work in the NRM collection including this 1960 poster. Sailing from Harwich has never looked so glamorous.
And there’s also this slightly grim NRM image of another great design.
1962 again. Must have been a vintage year for him.
This railway brochure (an object which combines both railwayana and ephemera and thus is very frightening to me indeed) came from a railway flickr set.
But that’s about it. And there’s nothing written about him either, literally all I know are his dates, 1931-1985, and even those are from Christies.
Even without information, though, people must like him because his work certainly sells. The Hastings poster above went for over £1000 at Christies four years ago, and they’ve sold lots of other posters that just don’t appear anywhere else. Like this 1965 effort for VSO – and it went for £110, what a bargain.
As well as this second lovely coach poster from 1958 (spectacularly modern for the date and costing a mere £192)
and this less characteristic piece of 1965 Times advertising as well which went for £300.
I’m going to try and find out a bit more background, but for now, here are some more coach posters to keep you happy while that happens. And if you do know anything about Royston Cooper at all, please get in contact, I’d really like to hear from you.