Illustrating America: The Life And Work Of Norman Rockwell

With today’s endless stream of photos and videos on social media, it’s easy to forget that there were simpler times when messages were carefully crafted in illustrations. During World War II, artist Norman Rockwell got his start illustrating America. His depictions of family, war, and American culture helped tell the story of what life was like in the 1940s and 1950s. As time went on, he only became more immersed in his artwork and thankfully for us, he crafted over 4,000 original pieces in his 84 years of life. Even those who don’t recognize his name have laid eyes on his work. If it weren’t for Rockwell, would we even know what it means to be an American?

He Was a Patriot Who Helped Inspire Americans to Join the War Effort


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Born in New York City, Norman Rockwell was a true patriot. He wanted to serve his country and tried to enlist in the U.S. Navy. He was initially turned down for being under the weight requirement. After gorging himself on bananas and donuts, Rockwell returned to the recruiter and signed on as a military artist.

He painted insignias on warplanes and created illustrations of American life. In 1943, he created the Four Freedoms series, depicting the four principles of universal rights. His works helped sell war bonds and inspired Americans to help the war effort.