Thursday, October 27, 2011

And to the tiger in the zoo, Madeline just said, "pooh, pooh!"


Illustration from Madeline's Chrismas, by Ludwig Bemelmans. Text reads, "To the tiger in the zoo, Madeline just said, "Pooh-pooh." Illustration is cartoony and loose with simple black lines filled in by loose lush watercolor.
I ran across a copy of "Madeline's Christmas," by Ludwig Bemelmans, at Goodwill (the source of Everything). I remember my mom reading this to me when I was little (and we had a record where some lady read it, too), and I vaguely remember the illustrations. At the time I thought they were irritating because they were unrealistic and the colors left white spots and didn't stop precisely at the edge of an object. Now, though, I think these drawings are incredible! It's so hard to describe "humor" in something purely visual when there's no punchline and the content isn't funny, but this describes it perfectly. Look at those leaves!

Illustration from Madeline's Christmas, by Ludwig Bemelmans. Madeline and a carpet salesman/magician peer at something magical. White swirls abound.

And it's so loose! The cool patterns, interesting layering, swooshy brushstrokes... *sigh* So I bought it but I don't know what to do with it. I want to open it up to a certain page and frame it and hang it on my wall, but a framed children's book seems a little macabre. So it's sitting on top of my record player along with the other big score from Goodwill, Roberta Flack's "Quiet Fire."




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