Thursday, January 9, 2014

Illustration Friday 12/27/13

topic: Reflect
First I.F. of the year...well actually it's from the previous week, ergo it's from last year, but due to confusing wording in the newsletter that went out on January 3rd, I mistakenly thought this was the current topic.  The actual topic for this week was, ironically, Time. Seeing as it's now Thursday afternoon, I don't think there is enough of it to spare for a do-over.

I try not to do the first thing that comes to mind for any project.  For this topic, the fist association was, naturally, a mirror.  (Most reflective thing, I guess?)  I wasn't about to do one of those Art 101 curved metallic and glass surfaces technical drawings because...WHY??  Would anyone. Do that to themselves.   Sorry guys, they aren't any more fun to do than they are to look at.  

But then an image popped into my head from a long-forgotten story that I just could not remember anything else about.  The image was of a child walking across the reflection of the moon's light on the ocean's surface.   He actually walks all the way to the moon in this manner.  Anyone  have a guess?  No?

Thanks to Google, I eventually figured out that the story was called The Garden Behind the Moon and it was by none other than Howard Pyle, the father of American illustration himself.  Turns out I had actually first encountered the story while working the cash register at an art supplies store (that also sold books.)  Cashiering was obviously not requiring 100% of my mental faculties or attention that day, so I grabbed a book from one of the shelves because it had a winged horse on the cover and read it.  (Come to think of it, I still can't remember how the winged horse comes into play.)  Anyway, upon a quick read-through of the synopsis on Amazon, I remembered that the moonlight bridge, which happens in the first chapter, was the visual highlight of the story for me, and the rest was really boring in the way that only children's stories published in 1903 are.  (There is a nice bit where he has to polish stars with lamb's wool, but Mr. Pyle sort of did the definitive rendition of that scene himself for the book.)

So back to I.F.--I decided to go with the original imagery of moonlight reflecting on the water that sparked my memory, but skipped the supernatural stuff, planting my lovely tall ship there instead.  

As a heads-up, you might be seeing an increase in tall ships in my work over the coming year, now that I'm a sailor on one. 

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