October 1, 2015

Sonnets to the Malamute

The sonnets that I had been making illustrations for were written in such a way as to come full circle, with the last sonnet repeating lines from the first one. Before illustrating them, however, I asked the author what I thought I already knew the answer to. It seemed to me that both the first sonnet and the last one described a night sky. But no, the poet told me, the first was a night sky and the last was a sunrise. It always pays to ask.

The line that was repeated in the first sonnet and the last sonnet was, "You are the sky above a star on earth." So for both the first and the last sonnets, I created an image of a malamute puppy in the sky. The puppy floats above an aerial view of Princeton, New Jersey, alluding to a favorite haunt of the writer. Since I knew that the last sonnet references a sunrise, I altered the sky to reflect that. Also, to visually recreate the theme of a circle in the writing, I made the last illustration a mirror image of the first.

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