The following are pages from a unwritten story. (I love Abby Wentworth’s title, “Characters from an untold story,” which graced an art show she did at Resurrect Art a couple of years ago. I wish that I had thought of it first, so I could steal it. The show was beautiful, as well.)
The method was unusual, and I’m pretty reluctant to expose myself lest it come across as cheating: I used the photocopier to make these pictures. I drew a simple boarder and continued to copy and fill it in as I went along, blacking out some pieces and adding to others. This is why the center of each picture is different but the edges have a lot of similarities. As I write this, I wonder if viewers might judge me for exposing myself…
Influences for this style included, especially, the wonderful and amazing Jan Brett. She does the most beautiful borders, I’m convinced, in the world. I’ve looked at her copy of “Beauty and the Beast” for hours. You probably should, too. Because it’s amazing.
Taking cues from Jan Brett and other inspirational artists, I amused myself by creating simple stories within each page that followed each other. Notice, if you will, (and here I’m not sure I want to tell you my secrets, either, in case the joy is in the discovery) the bird’s nest in the left hand corner, the placement of the cabin and castle, and the butterfly at right.
The story might seem a little dark, but I’m unapologetic, as that’s part of the great tradition of old children’s stories: see the original “Little Mermaid,” among others.