While painting I often listen to music, especially music in a minor key. A sad song can make me quite happy.
Here are some thoughts on illustration in a minor key.
The subject matter in this painting by Bilibin ( a visit to Baba Yaga) fits the somber palette.
And this elegant painting by Arthur Rackham for Grimm is as grim as the story.
But I remember being scared by all of the illustrations in the book A Holiday for Edith, by Dare Wright, even the ones that were supposed to be happy. The whole book was suffused with melancholy. I think that an artist brings many things to a book and some of them might not be brought there on purpose.
Divica Landrova’s illustration for Little Red Riding Hood is in a minor key, even though Redcap has not yet met the wolf.
Compare that to the same subject matter by Watty Piper.
I always wanted a seat at the table in Barbara Cooney’s Chanticleer, even though the illustration is dark. It feels cosy, like being inside when rain is falling on the roof.
Yuri Vasnetsov’s style and colors are similar here, but the room is lonely and frightening.
In this illustration by Lisbeth Zwerger, the text says that the feast is merry, but it feels desolate. Maybe the robbers are sad that their iPad fell on the floor.
This feast by Edgar and Ingri D’Aulaire describes a happy mayhem. It is in a major key.
I will end with my favorite feast of all, by Yuri Vasnetsov. The cockroaches put it firmly in a minor key. This is from the Magpie, shown on this blog before.
Enjoy the rain and sad songs!
p.s. If you would like to curl up under a quilt, please check out my new blog Mooshka – a Patchwork.