Saturday, March 11, 2006
Illustration Friday: Tattoo
"... And this tattooing had been the work of a departed prophet and seer of his island ... Queequeg in his own proper person was a riddle to unfold; a wondrous work in one volume; but whose mysteries not even himself could read, though his own live heart beat against them ..."
Herman Melville, Moby Dick
The rest of the story:
Looking for something that would bring the spirit of Queequeq to life regardless of my current hand skills, I found an antique shop (really more a hodgepodge shop) in a small town outside Austin chock-a-block with ancient dressers, each drawer full of something unexpected.
I found wonderful, expressive ink drawings lying loose in the back of one stuck drawer, and grabbed a few along with some props.
As I went to pay for the treasures, the elderly woman behind the counter told me her husband had done the ink drawings -- he was an anthropologist and a geologist -- and he stopped drawing when they married, much to her dismay. He passed away in 1986. She shared that she was a painter, and when I told her what I intended to do with his art, she was very excited his work would have new life through the Internet.
I was so engaged in our chat I neglected to get their names.
But I will, so I can credit him for the ink-flow at the heart of this image.
And I will also make sure his originals enjoy a good, appreciative home.