For the Love o' Lil: Serenade by Leslie Thrasher

  • A young woman is serenaded by a trio of suitors in this charming composition by Leslie Thrasher
  • This scene was painted as part of Thrasher's For the Love o' Lil cover series for Liberty Magazine
  • The artist created weekly covers for this series over the course of six consecutive years
  • Thrasher's paintings of everyday American life are always imbued with his signature sense of humor
  • Get complete item description here
Item No. 31-1373

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Leslie Thrasher
1889-1936 | American

For the Love o' Lil: Serenade
Liberty Magazine cover

Signed “Leslie Thrasher” (lower right)
Oil on canvas

This lively composition by American illustrator Leslie Thrasher depicts a beautiful young woman being serenaded by a trio of potential suitors. Each gentleman caller sings with more enthusiasm than the last in a charming attempt to impress the young lady, who sings along with a humorous look of boredom on her face. This painting comes from Thrasher's popular cover series for Liberty Magazine entitled For the Love o’ Lil and displays all the dynamic character and exacting realism for which Thrasher was known.

In 1926, Thrasher received a huge contract with Liberty Magazine to produce one cover illustration per week for six consecutive years. For this project, he created a continuing story called For the Love o’ Lil, which followed the lives of Lil Morse and Sandy Jenkins, a typical middle-class American couple, through their courtship, marriage and childrearing. Each issue had an accompanying page-long story related to the cover, and Lil was so popular with the public that readers would write in with potential storylines for the characters. For the Love o’ Lil was so well-liked it even became a serialized radio program and a feature film.

Born in 1889 in Piedmont, West Virginia, Thrasher studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts as a teenager and received a scholarship to study art abroad in Paris. Upon his return, he began studying under Howard Pyle, known as the “father of American illustration.” Thrasher sold his first cover illustration to the Saturday Evening Post in 1912, four years before Norman Rockwell’s first Post cover, and he would go on to produce over 360 magazine covers throughout his career. He painted humorous, relatable scenes of everyday life in America with colorful characters set against white backgrounds. He was also a successful commercial artist, painting advertisements for Cream of Wheat, Chesterfield Cigarettes and Fisk Tire.

Circa 1926

Canvas: 20" high x 16" wide
Frame: 26" high x 22" wide
For the Love o' Lil: Serenade by Leslie Thrasher
Period: 1919-Present
Origin: America
Type: Paintings
Style: Illustration

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