- Finlay, Virgil [Warden]
- (1914–1971)American artist; perhaps the most accomplished artist to appear in the pulp magazines. Finlay came in touch with HPL in September 1936 and corresponded with HPL until the latter’s death. Finlay actually offered to illustrate HPL’s tales for a potential book of his work, even though HPL had no prospects for any such book publication at the time. HPL was prodigiously impressed with Finlay’s art, and in late November 1936 he wrote a sonnet (“To Mr. Finlay, upon His Drawing for Mr. Bloch’s Tale, ‘The Faceless God’”; Phantagraph,May 1937), based upon Finlay’s illustration of Robert Bloch’s “The Faceless God” ( WT,May 1936). Finlay himself illustrated HPL’s “The Haunter of the Dark” ( WT, December 1936) and “The Thing on the Doorstep” ( WT,January 1937). Prior to HPL’s death Finlay executed his celebrated portrait of HPL as an eighteenth-century gentleman, although there is no evidence that HPL ever saw it; it was scheduled to appear in Willis Conover’s Science-Fantasy Correspondent,but it appeared in April 1937 as the cover of that magazine’s successor, Amateur Correspondent . Finlay went on to prepare dust-jacket illustrations for HPL’s Oand Marginalia. HPL’s letters to him were excerpted in “Letters to Virgil Finlay” ( Fantasy Collector’s Annual,1974). See Virgil Finlay, Virgil Finlay(Donald M.Grant, 1971), with lengthy contributions by Sam Moskowitz and Gerry de la Ree; Gerry de la Ree, Virgil Finlay Remembered (Gerry de la Ree, 1981).
An H.P.Lovecraft encyclopedia. S.T. Joshi, David E. Schultz.