For your consideration, a nicely drawn watercolor and gouache work featuring mallard ducks in flight over a marsh, signed in pencil at lower left by noted American illustrator WILLIAM SCHMEDTGEN (1862-1936). The drawing mixes sporting art with illustration art; the lead duck nearest the viewer glances almost mischievously, from the corner of his eye, at the viewer. Measurements are 13 1/4" by 9 1/4" (drawing inside the drawn lines) and 20" by 16 1/2" as framed. Schmedtgen was especially adept at hunting and fishing scenes, making him a favorite with aficionados of those activities, but his reputation rests on his notable career as a newspaper illustrator and cartoonist. He was born in Chicago and educated at the Art Institute of Chicago, and with the exception of only short periods, he spent his life in that city. The first commercial work came his way in 1883. Schmedtgen became chief of the art department at the Chicago Record from 1886 to 1901. He was embedded with US troops in Cuba during the Spanish American War. His skills in drawing and etching were in demand during a period when woodblock illustrations were being phased out of newspapers. Allow for reflections in some images.
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