Although Baker was building his career during the 1920s, some casual Internet image surfing failed to turn up anything from that decade by him.
So from our perspective, Baker doesn't really emerge until the 1930s. And in the form of 14 or so cover illustrations he made for Henry Luce's new business-oriented Fortune Magazine that began publication in 1930.
In those Great Depression days, Fortune was expensive to buy. In part that was due to its production values. For example, covers were printed on heavy, non-glossy stock. Below are images of Baker-illustrated covers. Some can be clicked on to enlarge.
Spruance is regarded by me and others as the U.S. Navy's leading World War 2 combat admiral. The style Baker used here is typical of his work for Time, and differs from what he did for Fortune.
This seems to be Baker's first Fortune cover. Its connection to the business world seems obscure.
This is more like it, an ocean liner departing its New York City pier.
A huge piece of road-building equipment.
And let's not forget agriculture.
Holiday season in the depths of the Depression.
Next month, Baker offered a quite different style.
Simplicity was found in many Fine Art painting of the time as well as this Baker illustration.
Inter-city busses were popular means of transportation back then.
Severe winters required snowplows for steam locomotives.
A mining scene.
At this time, the U.S. automobile industry was making a recovery from the worst of the Depression. The car on the hauler has one of those new, all-steel roofs.
This seems to be Baker's final Fortune cover. It deals with the new guidance systems for airliners.
thomas hart benton of illustaration?
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