I’ve spent a glorious morning, fuelled by coffee of course, putting together a few notes on the life and work of one of my favourite illustrators, John Archibald Austen. Austen, born at the end of the 19th century, followed his father and trained as a carpenter. But enamored by the works of Aubrey Beardsley, he moved to London and retrained as an artist and illustrator (and for a few years, revelled in somewhat Bohemian circles). I’m lucky enough to have a copy of the 1929 John Lane at the Bodley Head edition of The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders, illustrated by Austen , in my collection. Collectors’ notes here.