Be wise. Be brave. Be tricky. (slithytove) wrote,
Be wise. Be brave. Be tricky.

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The Nameless Crit Group met yesterday, with mroctober, pointoforigin, and deadlined. Half-Witch got its butt critted, but survived the experience, and promised mend its ways. Huge, huge thanks for the crits, guys. Critting a novel is a large task, and I really appreciate your help with this one.

Afterwards, food was eaten, news exchanged, the decayed state of the publishing world decried, and advice about life, agents, and everything was given. Because of the hints of gender stuff in Half-Witch, I think, mroctober gave me a copy of Lauren McLaughlin's Cycler. The setup of the novel reminded me a bit of Etgar Keret's short story, "Fatso." Thanks! mroctober is a generous guy. This is not the first book he's given me.

It was deadlined's suggestion to meet at the Brandywine River Museum. Good suggestion. They were having an exhibition of Edward Gorey original illos and memorabilia. Very, very nice. Did you know that Gorey owned an immense brown fur coat, much like the ones that so many of his male characters wear? It was there, in a glass case. I believe it was the same as this one.

I was amazed to find that Gorey usually drew at 1:1 scale. The original art is the same size as the art in the final printed books! The detail is astonishing. It was also fascinating to see Gorey's preliminary studies. A study for the famous frontispiece for "The Gashleycrumb Tinies," for example, bears the label, "The (Unnamed) Tinies." Gorey composed the picture before he came up with the name.

Permanent exhibits in the museum are local Chester County, Pennsylvania artists, chiefly the Wyeths, Andrew and his father N.C. Wyeth. I'm not much of a fan of Andrew Wyeth (it's okay to hate me for that), but I really enjoyed the N.C. Wyeth art. The exhibit was almost entirely the original art created for commercial illustrations for books and magazines during the first half of the 20th century. Most were narrative, and action/adventure-oriented. Illos for Scribners reprints of Robert Louis Stevenson adventure novels, for example. I dunno if it's great art, but I like it. Vigorous, muscular, three-dimensional, solid. Vastly different than his son's art. The brushwork, and the modeling and coloring of the faces, reminded me a good bit of Frank Frazetta. Occasional hints of Daumier, and even Cézanne.
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