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Biography: Albert Dorne

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Birth: February 7, 1904
Death: December 15, 1965



Bio Summary

Dorne’s life was a true “rags to riches” story. He worked as a newsboy, an office boy, a prize fighter, an art studio assistant, and then rose to become a highly respected illustrator, teacher and entrepreneur.

Early Life/Family

As a poor but enterprising “Dead End Kid,” he grew up New York City’s Lower East Side and left school in the seventh grade to help support his family.


Albert Drone had no formal training in art. Through a combination of natural ability and strong drive, he progressed successively from being an unpaid assistant to a commercial artist to one of New York’s most successful advertising artists, while still in his early twenties. He went on to become a leading editorial illustrator.

Career Outline

1947 – Co-founder of the Code of Ethics and Fair Practices of the Profession of Commercial Art and Illustration
1947 to 1948 – President of the New York Society of Illustrators
1948 – Became founder-director of the Famous Artists Schools in Westport, Connecticut

Comments On Style

Albert Dorne’s work is easily recognized as complicated illustrations filled with highly animated characters in exaggerated poses. He worked rather small because he believed that in small scale one was less likely to put in unnecessary details, and that the probability of faithful reproduction would be greater. His medium of choice was colored inks, which he applied with great skill after making meticulous pencil drawings in line.

According to Alex Toth, Albert Drone could draw from imagination without the need for models or photographs; however he kept a huge cross indexed swipe file of over twenty-four drawer filing cabinets.







1953 – Gold Medal from the New York Art Directors Club.
1963 – Horatio Alger Award for Achievement from the American Schools and Colleges Association, Inc.
1958 – Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts from Adelphi College.

Related Links

Bibliographic References

Famous American Illustrators by Arpi Ermoyan
The Illustrator in America 1880-1980 by Walt and Roger Reed
Alex Toth edited by Manuel Auad

Contributors To This Listing

L. Luminarias

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