Lovecraft was by no means an accomplished illustrator, but he never hesitated to
pepper his letters with numerous marginal drawings. He drew maps of both real and fictional
towns and created drawings of several of his monsters, sometimes in preparation for writing
about them. Below is a sampling of Lovecraft’s more significant drawings with links to the
P. Lovecraft collection
- Annals of the Providence Observatory (1904)
- In his youth, Lovecraft wrote many booklets about astronomy and chemistry filled with
illustrations of heavenly bodies and chemical apparatus.
- Saml Loveman, Esqr. (20 September 1924)
- Samuel Loveman was one of Lovecraft’s best friends in New York City and Lovecraft drew
this portrait of him. Loveman made a similar
- Nude, Bearded Lovecraft (28 May 1925)
- On 1 January 1925, Lovecraft moved from Sonia’s Brooklyn apartment at 259 Parkside Avenue
into new quarters at 169 Clinton Street. His clothes were later stolen from a dressing alcove
that connected to the hallway outside his apartment. In this letter to his aunt, Lillian D.
Clark, Lovecraft draws himself as “clothed” only in a long, flowing beard.
- Floorplan of 169 Clinton Street, Brooklyn (15 June 1925)
- In this letter to Maurice W. Moe, Lovecraft draws the plan of his room, showing the
“dressing alcove” from which his clothes were stolen.
- Floorplan of 10 Barnes Street, Providence (1 May 1926)
- On 17 April 1926, Lovecraft returned to Providence. In this letter to Frank Belknap Long, Jr.,
Lovecraft not only shows the floorplan of his apartment, but also the layout of each wall.
- Lovecraft Coat of Arms (24 September 1927)
- In this letter to Frank Belknap Long, Jr., Lovecraft creates a coat of arms for himself,
composed of the heraldry of his Lovecraft, Phillips, Allgood, and Place lines. He includes the
motto, “Quae Amamus Tuemur”—“We Defend the Things We Love”.
- Plot Notes for At the Mountains of Madness (early 1931)
- Lovecraft made several pages of notes for At the
Mountains of Madness, but this illustration of an “Old One” is
- Floorplan of 66 College Street, Providence (5 June 1933)
- Lovecraft and his aunt Annie moved into new quarters on 15 May 1933. Lovecraft was thrilled
with this antique home and wrote about it to many of his correspondents. He drew the floorplan
of his rooms in a letter to Carl Ferdinand Strauch; other versions were included in
to Donald Wandrei (31 May 1933) and
to Alfred Galpin (24 June 1933).
- Map of the Principal Parts of Arkham, Massachusetts (early 1934)
- “One thing I did lately was to construct a map of Arkham, so that allusions in any
future tale I write may be consistent.” (H. P. Lovecraft to Donald Wandrei, 28 March
- The Blasted Heath (27 March 1934)
- Although Lovecraft wrote “The Colour Out of
Space” in 1927, he drew this image of the story’s “blasted heath” in
a letter to F. Lee Baldwin eight years later.
- Sketch of Cthulhu (11 May 1934)
- In “The Call of Cthulhu” (1926), Lovecraft
describes a statuette taken from the cultists in the Louisiana swamps. He drew this
representation of it for his friend, Robert H. Barlow.
- Map of College Hill, Providence (30 May 1934)
- E. Hoffmann Price visited Lovecraft in Providence in June–July 1933. In this letter to
Price nearly a year later, Lovecraft drew a map showing several places they visited together,
including the “drug store where we got the beer”.
- Pickman’s Model (21 June 1934)
- Although Lovecraft wrote “Pickman’s
Model” in 1926, Lovecraft likely drew this years later for one of his
- Plot Notes for “The Shadow out of Time” (1935)
- Lovecraft’s two pages of notes for “The Shadow
out of Time” feature a drawing of a member of the Great Race.
- Kittens at Play (9 April 1936)
- Between March and December 1936, Lovecraft wrote several letters to his next-door neighbor,
Marian F. Bonner. The most frequent subject was the cats in the yards between their homes,
dubbed by Lovecraft the
Τάξισ” (Band of Elegant Cats).