Three New Illustrations

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Three New Illustrations

I thought I'd share the latest designs for the Illustrated Quotation project.
"Is there no way out of the mind?" - Sylvia Plath
My mother (a Smith graduate) introduced me to Sylvia Plath when I was in high school and I was immediately transfixed. As a melodramatic teenage musician and budding writer, I was of course drawn to her later, darker works - Daddy, Lady Lazarus, etc - and she embodied my idea of the artist's life at a particular extreme - suffering for your art and all that. But as an adult, I still love her writing, but respond to different pieces. I reread the Bee poems during the recent ...ahem... spotty weather, and was struck by The Arrival of the Bee Box as a metaphor for both her psyche and her life as a kept queen bee of sorts in Suburbia. Quotation from her diaries, which Nichole and I tore through last summer.
"Good prose is like a window pane." - George Orwell.
If you are a writer and haven't read through Orwell's essay "Why I Write," you should. It's a great lesson in finding your subject and sticking to it. Inspired by a recent bevy of emails from aspiring writers, I thought that this idea deserved some consideration. I'm of course a big proponent of the notion that good ideas are clear ideas, and that writing is largely a process of teasing your essential message out of the mess in your head. The jumbled, overlapping words form the window frame, the absence of which reveals a concise and transparent message.
"One always begins to forgive a place as soon as it's left behind." - Charles Dickens
This is the kind of sentence that either you relate to or you don't. As a person who has been nomadic and walked down more than a few paths, I know how distance changes your feelings about places, people and periods of time in your life. The haphazard cobblestones in this illustration were inspired by a particular place in Paris that holds a lot of memories for me, that I've alternately fled from and to. I wanted the subject to be the place here, as it watches the person fade into the void. Quotation from Little Dorrit. All prints are now available in the shop. - Evan

10 comments

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by SuperMomNoCape

I’ve been a gypsy all my life, moving from place to place so the last one really spoke to me. And place doesn’t necessarily have to be a physical place but it can be an inner dwelling as well that changes over time and is left behind.

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by Susan

I completely relate to the Dickens piece…so poignant and beautifully designed.

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by Manda @ Eat Cake

So neat!
Thanks for sharing.

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by Marjory

Beautiful illustrations Evan. Love the way you convey the meaning of this poetry. I have been writing about this mysterious understanding of a place that happens with distance. I love the quote by Sylvia
β€œIs there no way out of the mind?”

Perhaps traveling far is one way of getting out of the mind, and into the heart. Thanks.

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by Ann Mah

I love the way you’ve tied together the context of these authors’ lives with their words. The echo of Sylvia Plath’s bee poems is especially moving.

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by H like Heidrun

Super graphical …
… and words.

Best regards sending from Brecht-Town Augsburg

Heidrun

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by catie

amazing, as always.
and, yes, i can relate to the dickens quote.
the grass grows greener in my mind’s eye, with maybe a dose of regret and longing.

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by l o v e l y t h i n g s

my daughter just added, “that’s sooooo spot on.” Your work provided excellent dinner table conversation this evening. thank you!

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by l o v e l y t h i n g s

Your first sentence could not be more true….as soon as I read the quote I was filled with emotions. We’ve moved a lot and recently two big moves with our children to CA and then back from CA to CT. It’s amazing to hear our children “glamorize” the place that we’ve left behind. I sit at my dining room table looking at 4 of your prints and I’m trying to figure out how or where I can add one more. This one touches home…in more ways than you can imagine. Your illustration with the cobblestones and the shadow….how do I even articulate how meaningful this is?

Jul 20, 2014 • Posted by Annie

I want:
every print
every picture

and the money to buy them.

Enjoy your weekend.

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