Saturday, May 19, 2012

Badger is the New Owl

If you could care less about current trends you may not know that owls and birds of all kinds have been extreamly popular motifs in decorating for children and even adults.  You know the fashion is bound to fade when folks start to make fun of "putting a bird on it".  Check out this video.  So what animal/figure will be the "hot" new trend?  I have to confess - I'm in love with badgers.  Not just any badger.  Robert Ingpen's Badger from "The Wind in the Willows".  Ingpen is a famous illustrator from Australia who, now in his 70's, has really hit his stride.  He has been illustrating a series of classic children's books for Sterling Illustrated Classics.  The books are unabridged and full of the most wonderful new art.  The pages are thick and they have a ribbon bookmark that delights me.  I've found them at Sam's Club and I own "Peter Pan" and "Alice in Wonderland" but just aquired "Wind in the Willows".
It's been more than one hundred years since Kenneth Grahame published the sweet tale he first started telling his son as a bed time story.  I always loved Toad and his motorcars but these illustrations made me fall in love with the wise old Badger.

Isn't he magnificent?  Wearing wellies and a "B" letter sweater.  Did he go to Badger U? These scans don't even do justice to Ingpen's art.
Robert Ingpen uses mixed media - mostly pencil (colored and graphite), pastels and watercolors to make his soft focus but finely detailed illustrations.  He says he is influenced by the greats of old like Maxfield Parrish.  He won the  Hans Christian Anderson Medal for Illustration. 
Don't you think that Badger should be the new owl?

1 comment:

  1. Such a shame then that badgers are being culled in England despite the science stating they're not the cause of bTB in cattle. Hobby hunting is what is really going on and the poor badgers are the target.