The illustrations though...the illustrations are by C.E. Millard, there is not much about him on the net. But the illustrations turn line into an sinuous organic thing, particularly remarkable with his hand-lettered type - helpful in supporting an argument that words are living things. Below is an illustration that has stayed with me, and is the source of both my singing bird and flower-breathing dragon illustrations. Now you know - This artist is a magpie with borrowed diamonds!
Sunday, May 17, 2009
California Fairy Tales (Confession)
California Fairy Tales is a book passed on by my mother. It was published in the late twenties, and is a mashup of legend and fairytale from many traditions, Spanish, Irish, Native American and Chinese, supernatural creatures meeting up with the immigrants to California and working out ways to interact. That sounds so dry - they are very funny and whimsical stories, and have characters like the Freckle-faced Giant, the Big White Woolly lamb, the Learned Cat (I always think of him when I see this cat), and Pajaro, a tramp who became a sorcerer, whose "brains were buttered all over with surprise" by a piratical adventure he had one stormy night.