Tribute to Shel Silverstein

Posted on May 09, 2017 by Phillip Thompson | 0 comments

I've always loved Shel Silverstein's work. When I learned he grew up and lived in Chicago, I started reading more about him and thought it would be fun to put together a brief illustrated tour of his life and make a nod to his poetic and artistic style. An attempt, anyway.

What I realize, trying to imitate his work, is that his drawings look simple but there is a lot going on. There is power and looseness in the line work, there's very deliberate choices about white space--i.e., what NOT to draw. His illustration complements his poetry, which is also, on the surface, simple and to the point. Usually there is some twist or turn at the end that makes you think. Just like his famous song "A Boy Named Sue." 

His work is a great lesson in minimalism. Shel can make simple black and white text and pen strokes turn into some of the most beloved, thought-provoking, and colorful pieces of work for all ages. 

Going to Printer's Row this year? It's on June 10-11 by Printer's Row Park in the South Loop. Come find me and say hello.

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