by Guest Blogger Jo Manning
I first made his acquaintance after the publication of my biography of Grace Dalrymple Elliott, My Lady Scandalous. Donald was entranced by the life and beauty of Grace Elliott and inspired to do a paper doll set of her. He said that he hoped I “wouldn’t mind”. Wouldn’t mind?! I was delighted
Donald ran a paper doll business with a friend called Legacy Designs. They closed the business and took down the website a couple of years ago. Donald specialized in drawing paper dolls of celebrities, artists, authors, and literary figures. His work was exquisite! He did a number of paper doll sets of Jane Austen characters as well as the March sisters from Little Women, fashion icons, movie stars, et al.
|Mr. Darcy, hero of Pride and Prejudice
|Catherine Morland, a character in Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey
|Playwright William Shakespeare
Donald’s work was exhibited at the Tate Modern in London and the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. His designs appeared with regularity in magazines, including, of course, The Paper Doll Review, and he was active wherever paper doll collectors met, a mainstay of the summer’s annual Paper Doll Society meetings in Los Angeles. (Where there will be a table honoring him and his career this year.
In 2008, he made a gift of some of his papers to the ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives in Los Angeles, Collection # Coll2008-041. These are original drawings by Don illustrating Rechy’s 2003 book The Life and Adventures of Lyle Clemens, together with emails from the author to Don, and a set of paper dolls from his Icons and Lovers series.
My Lady Scandalous is about to go into ebook format and I had hoped to use one of the paper doll illustrations by Donald for its new cover. We had talked about this a month or so before he passed away and he was thrilled at the prospect. In his honor, I hope this can be accomplished. He was a very dear man, a talented artist, and a most cherished colleague.
Grace Elliott as a French revolutionary…though she was anything but! Grace was a staunch Royalist to the end of her days, but this is Don Hendricks having a little bit of fun.