I hope that by the time my kids reach elementary school they will have produced enough of these for an entire curriculum!
So I made this children's book in college for a printmaking class. My professor thought it was "deeply upsetting" and that "[she] would never read it to my child." Meanwhile my mum keeps telling me to publish it. I'm too lazy to pull out the plates and reprint it so here it is in an e-version:
Once upon a time, Patrick moved into a new old house with his mum and dad. He liked it at once.
There were no other houses for miles around. At night it was so quiet he could hear the moonlight.
But Patrick was all alone,
everyday he wished for a friend.
One day his wish came true when
Madeline appeared at his door.
They became best friends immediately.
They liked to play with the animals,
explore all the hidden places in the house,
play hide and go seek,
and take lots of naps.
One morning, Patrick woke up and
couldn’t find Madeline anywhere.
He looked by the pond,
in the basement,
and all over the kitchen.
He finally found her on the roof...
Inside, he tried to talk to his mum
but she always ignored him.
So when Patrick’s parents moved away,
he and Madeline decided to stay,
happily ever after.
Of the two trees in the front yard, one is a sapling while the other is full-grown.
If you look closely there is someone peeking out of the same front window that the two kids are looking out of in the second to last image.
Between this and the first image Patrick has entered into the house and is looking up the stairs towards where the figure upstairs should be.
In the interest of full disclosure, all of these images are based on the house I grew up in.
Patrick's family is represented on the wall with Patrick in the center with both parents looking away from (i.e. ignoring) him.
I incorrectly thought when I made this that walruses represented death in Inuit culture. That's what you get for reading too much about the Paul McCartney death conspiracies.
Note Madeline is incorrectly dressed for the inclement weather.
The mother is opening the door for the father, not Madeline.
The table is only set for three. Not only that, Madeline doesn't even have a chair underneath her.
According to scientists, animals have a heightened sensitivity to ghosts.
(These are two of my childhood pets.)
Madeline is adventurous, Patrick not so much.
Nice girls don't climb up the chimney.
Madeline doesn't require any sleep. She does however posses the ability to read.
A flat-footed reference to Little Nemo in Slumberland.
A good place to die.
Another classic place to bite it.
Or you could just pull a Plath...
While strong winds seem to have an effect on Madeline's mood, they don't seem to have any on her hair.
His mother is oblivious to his presence as she sweeps up his recently fallen portrait.
I never got around to tinting these images so you can't tell that the parents are dressed all in black as if recently returned from a funeral.
Both kids now appear in the window that Madeline was looking out of in the very first image.
The sapling in the first image is now full-grown. Madeline is lazing in the sun while Patrick has learned to read.
So just to make this ridiculously obvious, Madeline is the ghost of a child that died in the house by falling off the roof. Patrick moves in and as he is "strange and unusual" is able to see her. The parents, of course, are completely unaware of her, their son's loneliness, and the two children's developing friendship. Eventually Patrick is led to the roof where he suffers the same fate as Madeline (as represented by the leaves) whereupon his parents quickly sell their house and leave. Patrick and Madeline get to live forever as friends, alternatively lounging in the sun and reading for all eternity, in other words, heaven.