Exploring possible human knowledge


Paul Vjecsner



After discharge in 1950 from the Army, as indicated, I struggled. My first job, though obtained by referral from my superior at the Recruiting Publicity Bureau, was in New York City at the minimum wage, then $30 a week. It was in a tiny studio doing work for pharmaceutical companies. Most images immediately below are taken from what I did there, but I thought I'd begin with a cheerful picture I did for inclusion in my job-hunting portfolio.

1 July 2003



PHOTOGRAPHY, continued1, 2, 3, 4

PORTRAITURE, continued1, 2, 3

COMMERCIAL ART, continued1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25


AUTOBIOGRAPHY, continued1, 2, 3, 4


It is a watercolor (using tempera) done actually from a black & white stock photo that would now be called clip art. I chose it mainly to demonstrate my skill with the technique. As darkest color I used a brown again, as in the movie poster with Charles Boyer.

Following this are some things I did in that measly studio. The woman below left I did out of my head—by then I could fairly draw figures without a model. To that image's right is a mixture of little designs for medicine or symbols of folklore, etc., some done at a later job. Below these are further samples of my drawings at that studio, now of hands, at which I had become proficient.



The next images are of work I did at a later studio, with mainly advertising illustration. It may be that affixing signatures was not favored there, because I can't locate any. It is not my intention to add any at this time in such cases, since I strive for complete honesty, the only way in which what I do can to me gain credibility.

18 July 2003


Some hands again, in instructions for Electrolux vacuum cleaners.

Below next are at right cartoon drawings for Yale products, the drawings done in part for ads like those to their left, appearing in the once most popular Saturday Evening Post.


These two landscapes were drawn for General Electric, as were subsequent illustrations.


I had a liking for drawing or painting also inanimate subjects as far back as when illustrating from tanks to airplanes in the Czech youth magazine. They provided a challenge in depicting such as perspective and light and shade.


The above holiday-card illustration and the one at left were done for Shell oil, as seen. For some reason I wasn't satisfied with the large picture at the time, but I look more favorably at it now. I did not do the line of text at the bottom.

The two colors black and blue, or others above, were obtained by first drawing the black portion and then, likewise in black, any colored part on a plastic overlay, with a workable matte surface. The overlay drawing is converted into the intended color in the printing process.


While employed by this studio, I was in 1952 diagnosed to have a minimal case of TB, whereupon I was admitted to the National Jewish Hospital in Denver, where I stayed for about a year, remaining in Denver in employ for several more years.

My condition may have been partly due to overexertion. The studio was something of a "sweatshop". The windows were sealed and there was no air-conditioning, and I was only paid for the work I did when it was available. In addition I made the probably unwise decision to attend Cooper Union night school, although admission was difficult to attain, being free and based entirely on test results. Nevertheless, I feel they taught me nothing, having learned more by my own efforts.

In Denver, as might be expected,  I continued with artwork, for which


24 July 2003

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