Welcome to my blog, featuring various pieces from my collection of Oz books, artwork and memorabilia!

Friday, June 12, 2009

Hidden Faces

John R. Neill created many dazzling illustrations for the Oz series. He was also known for hiding faces in a number of his drawings, adding another level of fun to the books. I think one of his cleverest examples is in Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz, from 1908.

In the drawing used for the tailpiece of Chapter 7, (on page 94 in the first edition), we are shown the carriage carrying the travelers through the Black Pit of the Mangaboos. When looked at closely, the right side of the pit reveals silhouette profiles of Zeb, Dorothy and the Wizard, carved out of the rock! They can be a little more difficult to distinguish in some later printings. This is just another example of Ozzy details!

4 comments:

J. L. Bell said...

I see the faces, but I don't see the connection with Zeb, Dorothy, and the Wizard. Neill did other profiles in Dorothy and the Wizard, and gave the Wizard a long, curved nose.

Bill Campbell said...

I suppose it's my own interpretation, since to me it looks like an adult and two children, one of them a girl - so naturally I connect them to the three main characters of the book. You're right about the Wizard's nose, it is more hooked in the various drawings of the character.

Miriam said...

I definitely see the three characters' faces specifically. Do you have any more examples? (please, oh please!)

Sam A M said...

I always noticed those faces!

But never thought they were the human characters . . .