Excerpts from “Rights of the Pregnant Parent - Completely Revised,” mixed media in altered book, 5 1/2” x 8 1/2”, 2012.
Some images from another project for my Illustration Concepts class… In presenting my original concept for the assignment, I got so nervous articulating the deeply personal narrative of the piece that the professor interrupted and told me my neurosis was of much greater interest to him. Arguing that it clearly couldn’t all fit into just one image, he insisted that I do an entire book…
I stumbled upon this book in the “Take a Book, Leave a Book” shelf in one of RISD’s Liberal Arts buildings, and of course took it. The text worked all too well with my original concept, so I decided to alter it. The final piece encompasses the first thirty pages of the book, and reads like a giant gallery of all my worst fears and anxieties. It is also, in part, a miniature family history… Discussing lineage and inheritance in the context of my weird, often morose obsessions. Interwoven throughout are quotations from Bruce Springsteen’s “The River”, Mary Shelly’s “Frankenstein,” and bits and pieces of diary-comics from my own sketchbook.
Mind you, this was the first assignment I completed this semester, and kind of the worst way to introduce myself to a new teacher and my classmates. I’m simultaneously proud of how it turned out, and just embarrassed about the content. I also was given just a week to finish it, so I was in a horrible place for at least seven days of my life, as a result. By “horrible place,” I mean I was trapped in my own head. (This is actually what inspired me to create this comic.)
I don’t really know how to photograph the entire thing properly for the internet, since you kind of have to hold it in your hands to get the full effect. Which is fine, because I’m not so sure I want everyone to see the full book. The images I have here are the ones I’m most comfortable showing, but they’re also a few of my favorite… You might notice one of them looks like an early version of my “Brother Elf” comic, which I was just beginning to think about, at this time.
I should confess, as a side note, that I didn’t actually leave anything on the shelf when I took this book - so it is technically stolen. Maybe I’ll just put it back…