Eric Aldwinckle was working as a graphic design artist and as an instructor at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto when the Second World War broke out in Europe. A conscientious objector, he stayed away from the battlefront until he was appointed to the War Artists Group in late 1942. He set off for England in 1943, where he was attached to the Coastal Command and Fighter Command.
The Soldier Artist and Poet
In the fall of 1915, the British War Office contacted the University of Toronto for help in recruiting students for the officer corps of the British (Imperial) Army. One of the fifty young men who answered the call to service was Bernard Freeman Trotter, a twenty-five-year old graduate of McMaster University who was just beginning advanced studies at the University of Toronto.
For many British soldiers and civilians alike, the First World War had become hopeless and seemingly endless by the summer of 1918.
Julian Gould was the son of Mahalah Elizabeth and Frederick James Gould (1855-1938); his father was a teacher, author, socialist and secularist. Born in 1891 in London, Julian was educated at Wyggeston Grammar School and studied art at the Municipal School of Art in Leicester. He won the school’s silver medal for a shaded drawing of a man’s head from life, and in 1910 he went to Paris to sketch. Yet in the five years after that, Gould worked as a printer’s designer – he was pursing a career in art but only at the fringes.