When I draw or paint, I am always surprised at the outcome–not in a good way. Most elementary school kids have more skill than me. My daughter is probably the only one who admires my “work”, and I expect that in a year or two her skills will surpass mine. I am always surprised, because I come from a family of artists. My father painted; my sister and brother both paint. They are good, too. Do I have hidden artistic talent that I haven’t tried hard enough to develop? Maybe. Maybe not. I’m learning to accept my stick figure drawings in all their painful awkwardness. Still, there is a part of me that daydreams about being an artist, and that part of me decided that Isolde, the main character of Behind Green Glass, would be an amazing painter. (In my dreams, I’m also a trapeze artist and speak ten different languages fluently).
I gave Isolde the surname Rackham as a tribute to Arthur Rackham, one of my favorite fairytale artists. If I had the ability, I would emulate his style. Instead, I’ll just share some of his illustrations. Most, if not all, of his work is in the public domain, so I don’t feel guilty reposting it. Here are a few of my favorites: