Sunday, 17 February 2008

Martin the Kingfisher

Too nice to stay in drawing stupid cats yesterday, so took the 64 bus to Macclesfield, a glorious 35 minute journey winding up and down and all over. Could have got off at Kettleshulme and gone to The Swan, which is owned by the residents and does the greatest food I've ever had in a pub, but I stayed on the bus.
The silk museum, which I'd never been to, was closed, but had a good explore around the town. Down side - no comics shops (but then they are all pretty disappointing with no real discoveries). Up side - cracking little indoor market, proper cheese, meat, veg. Mexican restaurant, which I'll try next time. A few interesting looking pubs, and The Cheshire Gap, Macclesfield's highly impressive delicatessen (could have spent £40 easy). Nice cluttered art shop, interesting looking secondhand shop next to it (closed), and a nice little secondhand bookshop, where they offered me wine and I found this -

The back describes the series as possessing "that delicate gaiety which shows they come from the French", "gently ablaze with ROJAN'S lithographs".
Lithography is something I've always fancied trying my hand at, and this beautiful book had renewed my interest. Probably be good for me to draw some other animals too.
I've never seen this Pere Castor's Wild Animal Books series before, so please on your travels look out for MISCHIEF the Squirrel, QUIPIC the Hedgehog, PLOOF the Wild Duck, FROU the Hare, BOURRU the Brown Bear, SCAF the Seal and CUCKOO.

Is it the muted colours, the dusty textures, or just the deceptive simplicity of these illustrations that just makes me sigh? Or am I a softy?

The images and format remind me a lot of the old Picture Puffins which are just achingly perfect. My mum has entrusted me with her collection of maybe 20 different books in the series. Maybe I'll scan one or two for you all in internet land to see.


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Alex said...

I think it would be good if you drew other animals as well, like the kingfishers and rats and frogs in that book, but in your version they had cat's heads.
It's not like you draw proper cats, they're more like humans with cat's heads, so why not do an otter with a cat's head?

Jim Medway said...

Leave it with me Alex and I'll see what I can do!