Virgil Finlay

Studying art primarily through books, high school art classes, and the free night school at the Rochester, New York, Mechanics Institute, Finlay worked as a house painter and on a radio assembly line until he submitted his first illustrations to Weird Tales in 1935. Using a time-consuming but delicately detailed pen-and-ink stipple technique that could be very successfully reproduced on rough pulp paper, Finlay's early black-and-white pictures were among the first illustrations in Weird Tales to receive letters of praise from fans and authors: even Frank Paul's art work had been disliked by many fans who felt that the space would have been better used for more fiction. Within a very few years, Finlay was contributing art to American Weekly, Amazing Stories, Fantastic Adventures, Captain Future, Strange Stories, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, Strange Stories, Thrilling Wonder Stories, and many others, and his work remained in great demand until the boom in pulp magazine publishing ended in the early 1950s. Until his death in 1971, he remained active as an artist, drawing characteristic interior illustrations for astrology magazines, and moving into an entirely new area of art in the late 1950s when he began painting large abstracts on canvas.