『ロビンフッドの歌』印刷原画 制作年不明 ケープアン・ミュージアム所蔵
左「ロビンフッドとギズボーンの男」 P67 ©Aristides Burton Demetrios
右「ロビンフッドの死」P109 ©Aristides Burton Demetrios


Song of Robin Hood (1947)

This is a big story of 123 pages composed of songs, poems and illustrations arranging the English folk song with modern flavor. It is a 3-year collaboration with Anne Malcolmson, anthropologist, Grace Hogarth, editor and Grace Castagnetta, music arranger. Burton studied literature, references, drawings and techniques for the first two years. In the last year, she continued working on the book from 5 o’clock in the morning to 5 in the evening. She wore fur-lined boots to warm her legs and put a mug cup of coffee on a coal stove within her reach. She used pens, ink and scratchboards to complete 128 pictures of art. The original drawings then were delivered to a craftsman who engraved the drawings on print blocks. Detailed work continued at the print shop to align drawings with text.
Burton made a through collection of reference materials, studied tapestries, parchments, archives and gold painted manuscripts hand copied by priests in the 12th century. She explored expressive techniques to represent the ancient atmosphere in over 400 verses. She discovered that the priests in the Middle Age decorated their works with pictures of vines and flowers. She therefore made reference to pictorial books of flora for her illustrations. Sometimes she rent swards of 12th centuries and put traditional costumes on her sons to draw.
The book was in a great contrast of black and white with flowers and vines arranged around the letters of the text. Very precise and adequate illustrations with backgrounds different in each page helped the book to be called artistic masterpiece of Burton.

“Song of Robin Hood” Print    Undated    Collection of the Cape Ann Museum
Left: ‘Robin Hood and Guy of Gisborne’ P67 ©Aristides Burton Demetrios
Right: ‘Robin Hood’s Death’ P109 ©Aristides Burton Demetrios