Sunday, April 23, 2006

Bologna 2005

Illustrating Andersen
American artist Kathryn Dyble Thompson has published numerous books over the last ten years with both national publishing houses such as Atheneum and others closer to her home of Milwaukee, such as Gareth Stevens and Cricket Books. In this illustration for Andersen’s Fir Tree, she abandons her usual colorful palette of brilliant watercolors and uses only sepia ink, applied with both brush and pen. Dark sepia and brilliant white are an appropriate color palette for this scene in the winter forest, in which even the high-jumping hare can barely clear the top of the growing young fir tree. Later, when its third winter arrived, “the tree had grown so tall that the hare was obliged to run round it.” Though perhaps perplexing as a stand-alone image, Thompson’s picture works wonderfully as an illustration, showing the contrast and the distance between the little fir tree and the other far grander trees of the forest. The image (as illustration) is an important one, for the grown fir tree, later old and cast off, will remember longingly when it was small and played with the hare - and had not a worry in the world. “’Rejoice in thy youth,’ said the sunbeam. ’Rejoice in thy fresh growth and the young life that is in thee.’”

JEFFREY GARRETT, Northwestern University, Evanston IL, USA
The Emperor’s New Illustrations, exhibition catalogue
2005 Bologna Children’s Book Fair.


At 4:03 PM, Anonymous Kathryn Lenihan said...

Kitty I really like your sepia Ills.

So nice to be able to see your work I'll write you soon. Too many things going on all are emotional drains.

Good bold strokes!!


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