A Memorable Nature-Illustrator

003 (14)004 (12)

(rare dj, McClelland & Stewart, 1930; the title page and facing page illustrations)

006 (11)008 (6)

(1938, Macmillan dj and illustrations done by MacDonald)

011 (6)014

(scarce 1938 Rhinehart dj and illustrations)

016 (2)017 (3)

(Ryerson, 1939 dj and illustrations by month)

018 (2)

(illustration from Hurt Not the Earth by E.Newton-White, Ryerson, 1958)


(left: Ryerson, 1959 dj–and drawings); right: pb cover 1969 Birches End Press–drawings also by MacDonald)


(rare signed House and Barn drawings, DM Press, no date given)


(left: the ultimate overview of his work, U of T Press, 1973; right: poem illustration from this book)


(from the same book: uncolored copy of painting of MacDonald by Lawren Harris)

Thoreau MacDonald (1901-1989) was named after Henry David Thoreau and was the only son of The Group of 7’s J.E.H. MacDonald.  Subject-matter-wise, MacDonald was interested in rural living and Nature. His specialty was black-and-white pen drawings; his lettering and designs adorned many Ryerson books.

Some of his best work includes his father’s poetry collections West by East and Village & Fields as well as: The Iron Door (E.J. Pratt), The Iceberg and Other Poems (Charles G.D. Roberts), Indian Nights (Isabel Ecclestone Mackay), Maria Chapdelaine (Louis Hemon), Northern Farm (Henry Beston), Country Hours (Clark Locke), Andy Clarke and His Neighbourly News, Hurt Not the Earth (E. Newton-White), David (Earle Birney), At the Long Sault (Archibald Lampman), News of the Phoenix (A.J.M. Smith), A Canadian ABC (Lyn Cook), House and Barn.

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