Hunting And Trapping In Art And Illustration

The Story of Siegfried illustrated by Howard Pyle (American, 1853-1911)

Stalking Horse: a person or thing that is used to conceal someone’s real intentions. I heard this phrase used to describe a tactic used by Woolworths Australia, who installed a digital mirror at some self-serve check outs. They said that they were not retaining any images, and if customers don’t like it, customers were free to use the staffed check outs instead. Then it turned out they were indeed (allegedly) retaining customer images after all. More literally: the stalking horse is a screen (traditionally made in the shape of a horse) behind which a hunter may stay concealed when stalking prey.

HAS HUNTING ALWAYS BEEN A MAN’S JOB?

Notice the absence of women and girls in the illustrations below.

Because at present it is the males in most societies who do the hunting and fishing, the division of labor has for a long time been seen as between man the hunter and woman the nurturer and gatherer. Yet women still hunt in some societies: The Agta of the Philippines, some Aboriginals — the Shoshoni, for instance. Mbuti women go net hunting with the men; Chipewyan women hunt when the men are away; Copper Eskumi and Ainu women hunt large mammals alone, and the Agta women — superb hunters — hunt, like Tiwi women, accompanied only by a dog. (The Tiwi live on Melville Island, off the coast of northern Australia.)

Fishing is even more variable. In some societies it is a communal activity, in some exclusively female, in some exclusively male. The collecting of fish — that is, gathering it along reefs and shoals — is generally the job of the very young and the very old. But in most groups men do both the hunting and the fishing. They also make the weapons, and smelt and treat metals. In only one known society is the mining of ore a female job. Woodcutting is usually a male task; carrying heavy loads a female one. In ‘primitive’ societies women do most of the housebuilding. And in almost all societies women work harder than men.

Marilyn French, Men, Beyond Power: On Women, Men & Morals p20
Georg Pencz, The Hunter Caught by the Hares, c. 1535
Georg Pencz, The Hunter Caught by the Hares, c. 1535
NOVEMBER 1927 AMERICAN BOY MAGAZINE ~ COVER BY WALTER BEACH HUMPHREY
The Juvenile almanack, or, Series of monthly emblems c1822-1824
The Juvenile almanack, or, Series of monthly emblems c1822-1824
Schnick schnack trifles for the little-ones by Oscar Pletsch 1867 play hunting
Schnick schnack trifles for the little-ones by Oscar Pletsch 1867 play hunting
Winchester The Rifle That Will Stop Him 1909
Winchester The Rifle That Will Stop Him 1909. Gun advertisements are always disturbing, I guess.
National Sportsman Magazine February 1924 (cover detail)
National Sportsman Magazine February 1924 (cover detail). Notice he’s grabbing a tree rather than his gun, creating an optical illusion.
National Sportsman Magazine September 1936
National Sportsman Magazine September 1936
Hunting & Fishing Magazine October 1938
September 1934 BOYS' LIFE MAGAZINE cover art by WILLIAM SOARE
September 1934 BOYS’ LIFE MAGAZINE cover art by WILLIAM SOARE
National Sportsman Magazine November 1928 by Anton Otto Fischer (February 23, 1882 – March 26, 1962) 
Trending INTO MAINE illustratred by N.C. Wyeth 1938
Trending INTO MAINE illustratred by N.C. Wyeth 1938
Elenore Plaisted Abbott (1875 – 1935), The Monkey Resumed His Place, ca. 1914
Nikolay Ustinov from the life story of the Russian journalist & naturalist, Mikhail Prishvin
Nikolay Ustinov from the life story of the Russian journalist & naturalist, Mikhail Prishvin
The Carnaval A Book Of Poems by Sef Roman Semenovich and Leonid Roshidaev 1994 the good man
The Carnaval A Book Of Poems by Sef Roman Semenovich and Leonid Roshidaev 1994
Charles James Folkard (6 April 1878 – 26 February 1963)
Charles James Folkard (6 April 1878 – 26 February 1963)
Cover by Thé Tjong-Khing for a Dutch edition (1960) of Daudet's TARTARIN DE TARASCON
Cover by Thé Tjong-Khing for a Dutch edition (1960) of Daudet’s TARTARIN DE TARASCON
1935 July OPEN ROAD FOR BOYS Magazine
1935 July OPEN ROAD FOR BOYS Magazine
Three Jovial Huntsmen, 1974 Caldecott Honor Book, Susan Jeffers
Three Jovial Huntsmen, 1974 Caldecott Honor Book, Susan Jeffers
Bonomi Edward Warren - Sportsman and dog on a wooded path
Bonomi Edward Warren – Sportsman and dog on a wooded path
A Walk in the Country, 1935 by Norman Rockwell hunting
A Walk in the Country, 1935 by Norman Rockwell

Whenever I see pheasant hunting I think of Danny The Champion of the World by Roald Dahl, an influential middle grade novel from my childhood, and unlike the other middle grade novels Dahl wrote.

Abe Birnbaum New Yorker cover pheasant
New Yorker cover hunting by Garrett Price
New Yorker cover hunting by Garrett Price
Illustration by A.B.Frost wood engraved for Harpers, 1883 hunting
Illustration by A.B.Frost wood engraved for Harpers, 1883 hunting
Michal Elwiro Andriolli (1836 Wilno - 1893 Naleczow) for The Last of the Mohicans 1881
Michal Elwiro Andriolli (1836 Wilno – 1893 Naleczow) for The Last of the Mohicans 1881
The Trapper (1921) Rockwell Kent
The Trapper (1921) Rockwell Kent
Arthur-Fitzwilliam-Tait-The-Life-of-a-Hunter-A-Tight-Fix-bear
Arthur-Fitzwilliam-Tait-The-Life-of-a-Hunter-A-Tight-Fix-bear
PETER-UND-DER-WOLF-1958-Frans-Haacken-hunters
PETER-UND-DER-WOLF-1958-Frans-Haacken-hunters
mid-19th-century-plate-of-hunting-scene
mid-19th-century-plate-of-hunting-scene
mid-19th-century-plate-of-hunting-scene-2
mid-19th-century-plate-of-hunting-scene-2
Vojtěch-Kubašta-1914-1992-The-Day-Of-The-Bison-Hunt-pop-up-book-1962-4
Where’s that kid going with that rifle? I’d like (not really) to see Joan Walsh Anglund depict the moment of slaughter.
Pieter-Bruegel-the-Elders-Hunters-in-the-Snow-pond-detail
Pieter-Bruegel-the-Elders-Hunters-in-the-Snow-pond-detail
Charles Edmund Brock from 'The Knights of the Flowers' circa 1890
Charles Edmund Brock from ‘The Knights of the Flowers’ circa 1890
Frank C. Bensing (1893-1993) c1950, 'Three Men Hunting'
Frank C. Bensing (1893-1993) c1950, ‘Three Men Hunting’
House & Garden Magazine October 1930. Two men hunt for something, but who knows what? Are we supposed to think that's a gun? The flowers in the foreground suggest instead a rake. They are probably hunting for flowers.
House & Garden Magazine October 1930. Two men hunt for something, but who knows what? Are we supposed to think that’s a gun? The flowers in the foreground suggest instead a rake. They are probably hunting for flowers.
Arkady Sher
Arkady Sher
Hunting & Fishing Magazine March 1937 adverisement for bullets Kleanbore
National Sportsman Magazine September 1936 Upland Hunting Fishing Goose advertisement for Nitro Express bullets

These bullets look disturbingly like lipsticks.

Hunting & Fishing Magazine February 1934 bullet advertisement

Header illustration: The Story of Siegfried illustrated by Howard Pyle (American, 1853-1911)