Google celebrated British illustrator and artist Sir John Tenniel’s 200th birth anniversary with a doodle on February 28. An acclaimed Victorian painter, Tenniel is celebrated for his illustrations for Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass.
Tenniel was born in Bayswater, West London in 1820. At the age of 20, Tenniel received a major eye injury and eventually, lost sight in his right eye. From a very early age, Tenniel was appreciated as a humorist and soon after, also cultured his talent for scholarly caricature.
His first illustration was for Samuel Carter Hall’s The Book of British Ballads in 1842. Eight years later, he joined the historic weekly magazine Punch as a political cartoonist. Lewis Carroll noticed Tenniel’s distinct style of work and in 1864, approached the artist to illustrate his book, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.
This association marked Carroll and Tenniel’s creative partnership and continued with Through the Looking Glass in 1872. “The result: a series of classic characters, such as Alice and the Cheshire Cat, as depicted in the Doodle artwork’s rendition of their iconic meeting-characters who, along with many others, remains beloved by readers of all ages to this day,” the Google Doodle page says.
After working with Lewis Carroll, Tenniel resumed his work with Punch. For his work, Tenniel also received a knighthood in 1893.
Sir John Tenniel died on February 25, 1914. He was 93.