Essay on Biography of William Blake

Essay on Biography of William Blake

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How you live your life and the people you surround yourself with influence and inspire your work and success. William Blake was a famous artist, engraver and poet. However, it was not until 1863 that he became famous when Alexander Gilchrist published his biography(Blake, William, and Geoffrey Keynes).Blake and his poetry have been compared to Shakespeare (Kathleen Raine). As an artist Blake was equated to Michelangelo. Being born during the time of both the American and French Revolution, William Blake was against both the Church and the State. Blake was a Dualist, believing the earth is broken up into two; good and evil, Heaven and Hell. He was a visionary and was known to many as a modern-day prophet (in class). Blake’s visions influenced his writing later on in his life. Additionally, he was homeschooled for the better part of his childhood, which shaped him as a person. William Blake’s family life and personal beliefs influenced his substantial body of work.
William Blake was born in Soho District of London, England on November 28th 1715. He was the son of Catherine Wright, who was married to her second husband, James Blake, a hosier. Blake was one of seven children. Unfortunately, two of his siblings died as infants. His mother Catherine was a member of the Moravian Church. In some of Blake’s later poems there have been traces of Moravian hymns (blakearchive.org). Overall, William Blake’s childhood was an atypical one. He experienced strange, unexplained visions from a young age and did not fit into a typical school setting. According to Gilchrist, starting at a young age, Blake would see images and visions. When he was four, Blake saw a vision of God leaning his head against a window. At the age of nine, he saw an an...


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...s work wouldn’t be successful so Cromek asked Thomas Stothard to finish the etching. Blake felt cheated by Stothard and broke off all contact with him. William Blake then set up his own shop where he produced his own version of the Chaucer illustration as well as many other works (Complete works). Between 1808 and 1818, Blake was left in poverty. After being cheated by Cromek, William was a bitter and angry man. He stopped producing etchings and engravings for commercial use.
In 1818, William Blake befriended John Linnell, a twenty-six year old landscape painter. Linnell provided Blake with many opportunities to get back on his feet. In 1819, Blake began sketching Visionary Heads for John Varley, an artist and astrologer. Visionary Heads are black chalk and pencil drawings of famous historical and mythological creature that Blake created in 1818 for Varley.





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