Fall always represents beginnings to me so I thought I'd start a new post for the season on the theme of beginnings and what could be a better subject than giving birth?
This series of three illustrations were created for Middlebury Magazine for an article "Rebirth" written by Lauren Markham. Once considered an ancient practice, midwifery is experiencing a resurgence across North America.
This image focuses on the practice of home births using the water method, where with the help of a midwife the mother gives birth to the child in an inflatable pool, or bathtub.
This image addresses the misconceptions and myths of midwfery represented with the 19th century costume contrasted with the contemporary practices of modern equipment. This piece was initially suppose to be a full page, which is unfortunate because I liked the sensible shoes as part of the midwife's costume ;-)
This sketch really evoked home delivery for me, but the image was far too visceral for the editor (more specifically the male editor).
The one below is a tamer version: a spot illustration employing a childbirth myth icon: the stork, but here used to represent home delivery.
Unfortunately I am not a parent, I have never experienced the miracle of giving birth. Some inspiration was derived very loosely from my memories of watching my friend Esther Pflug give birth to her daughter in a very poignant and visceral documentary film created by her partner filmmaker Louis Taylor.
The award winning film "Esther, Baby and Me" has actually nothing to do with midwifery
(althought there is a bathtub scene) it's a candied account of Louis' own experiences on the reluctant road to fatherhood. I highly recommend the film.
It was a joy to work with Pam again at Middlebury. I love how she dropped the dot in the "i" of Rebirth, a subtle touch to the title.
- Jan 5, 2017 Hyakki Yagyo: Night Parade of 100 Demons