I'm working on the Wildflower Festival poster, developing the delightfully complex layers of leaves and stalks and flowers that make up the lupine shrub. I'm at the stage where most of the line-work is done, but I need to look it over and tidy things up: cleaning up any wobbles, adjusting line weights, and making sure that things are overlapping correctly--none of the leaves that are in the back should be drawn on top of a stem or a flower that should be in the front, of course.
Which makes me remember a book that I enjoyed as a child: The Borrowers, by Mary Norton. I enjoyed the story as a child, but I also remember being startled by the illustrations. They are lovely line drawings by Beth and Joe Krush. The illustrators use what, to me, was a totally startling and even rebellious approach: they didn't fuss with planning out the foreground/background relationships too much, so that you can see the lines of stuff in the background right through the stuff in the foreground.
See how you can see the edge of the table right through the tiny man's legs? And you can see the edge of the bed right through the table? And you can see the lines of the bedsheet, as well as the chamber-pot, right through the cane?
Scandal! Or perhaps a clever way to hint that this is all in one's imagination? Or perhaps just a really fun, anti-uptight approach to line drawings? Hats off the to Krushes for being starting and delightful in a way that has stuck in my head since elementary school.
(More images from The Borrowers. Seriously, it's worth a pop by the library to revisit this one.)
All right, back to work for me.