Illustration Friday - Launch

Ship of Fools

 Laura stretched her gleaming neck
  Like a rush-imbedded swan,
Like a lily from the beck,
Like a moonlit poplar branch,
 Like a vessel at the launch
When its last restraint is gone.

The new Illustration Friday prompt, Launch, was rattling around in my head when it dislodged this poem from my school days. Remember Goblin Market? Back when the dinosaurs roamed the earth English teachers used to assign this poem to get the symbolism/feminism discussion rolling. If you're intrigued by lovely ladies, goblin men & forbidden fruits it is a fun one. You can catch it here.

Ship of Fools was  was originally created for a collaborative self portrait book. It measures 4" sq. and is a mix of watercolor pencil and metallic inks/paints on paper. It it now in my ArtSnark Etsy shop

Rossetti reminds me- I don't think I have mentioned yet the wonderful Pre-Raphaelite exhibit we enjoyed at the Musee d'Orsay last month. The dryly titled A Ballad of Love and Death: Pre-Raphaelite  Photography in Great Brittian, 1848 - 1875 showcased classic photos and paintings from some of my favorites, Julia Margaret Cameron, Lewis Carroll, John Ruskin, Dante Gabriel Rossetti (Christina's brother) and others. Several models/poses/scenes were similar (or almost identical) in these early photographs and the paintings. Some of the photos were handcolored, increasing the resemblance to the famous paintings. While I knew these folks were reading the same material (and in some cases hanging out), it never occurred to me just how much the photographers and painters were influencing each other. 

Loaded with lovely images, the exhibition book, The Pre-Raphaelite Lens was too heavy to lug overseas.  I've since found it (cheaper) on Amazon.com and am saving my pennies. Another interesting source for Pre-Raphaelite info is mixed media artist Maureen Tillman's blog . On her right sidebar you'll find links to some of her great posts about these artists and their models/muses. 

Sorry if I've bored you with the ramble. I'm on some heavy cold meds, so the synapses might be misfiring more than usual today. If you are feeling inspired to "Launch" - make an illo, post it online and share the link over at IllustrationFriday.com. Or just pop over there to see what everyone else is up to. 

Before I go, I'm hosting a new custom printing giveaway for Uprinting.com. Next Thursday 1 random winner gets 250 color printed nightclub-style flyers. To enter leave a comment before 1 am (EST) on 6/23. This particular giveaway is only open to USA residents though - sorry about that International folks. Click here for flyer details.


  1. I love the line work and colour!
    The poem is perfect and brings back memories!
    Good luck with your cold :-)

  2. Fabulous!!! Love the poem too!

  3. Lovely movement and great quote!

  4. Love the poem. Nice image for "launch". I like the movement too.

  5. I guess there are no official rules regarding blogging while intoxicated. (from cold meds) Perfect post for launch.

  6. I definitely feel the PreRaphaelite vibe in this work. It's very classy looking. The work is very beautiful and magnificent.