Bertil Erik Karl Lundgren was born May 5, 1906 in Sweden. The names of his parents are unknown. His younger brother was Fred, and his two younger sisters were Anna and Ethel.
In 1919 at the age of twelve he immigrated to the Unitd States, where he lived with his Uncle Gustaf Lundgren in a suburb of Chicago, Illinois.
In 1924 he graduated high school, after which he attended college in Chicago and studied art. While at school he met and fell in love with another art student, Marion Yeomans, who was born in Connecticut on February 1, 1909.
In 1928 he graduated college, after which he worked as a commercial artist in Chicago.
In 1929 he married Marion Yeomans. They lived at 1033 North Dearborn Avenue in Chicago. They a one daughter, Linda Lundgren.
From 1930 until 1935 he was a cover artist for pulp magazines, such as Two-Gun Western Stories, Nickel Western, Man Stories, and Popular Fiction Magazine. All of the pulp magazines that published his work were produced by Metropolitan Publishers Inc. of Chicago, IL.
In 1935 he began to write and illustrate a series of amusing travel stories for Esquire Magazine. The series was popular enough to run for five years.
In May 1938 his work was included in an International Watercolor Show in Chicago.
In 1939 his illustrations appeared in Coronet Magazine.
By 1941 he had become Art Director of Esquire Magazine, and had moved to New York City.
During WWII he reported for enlistment on June 23 and served in the U.S. Army. Even though he was married to a U.S. citizen he still had the status of an Alien Resident, but he finally became a U.S. citizen during his military service. He was stationed in Florida at Camp Blandings. This is the same Army Camp where the artist H. J. Ward was stationed at the same time.
After the war he moved to West Palm Beach, Florida, where he was hired to teach art at the Norton Gallery School of Art. He was hired by J. Clinton Shepherd, another magazine illustrator, who had also moved to Florida when he was offered the position of Director of the Norton Gallery School of Art.
He and his wife taught art in West Palm Beach for many years. Their names were listed regularly in records of course offerings at the Norton Gallery School of Art until 1965.
Along with his career as an art instructor he also continued to regularly exhibit watercolors and oil paintings of seascapes at several galleries in the Palm Beach area.
He and Marion settled in a showcase home at 17 Country Club Road, Golfview, where they enjoyed social success as popular local artists.
Like many Florida residents he preferred to spend the hot summer months in a northern climate. He and his wife bought a second home in Waldoboro, Maine, where they built a unique art studio. This is the same town where the famous watercolor artists Andrew Wyeth also lived.
Eric Lundgren died at his summer residence in Waldoboro, Maine, at the age of sixty-five on July 29, 1971.
© David Saunders 2009