Monday, 18 September 2017

Harriet the Spy - Little Girls in Literature

Here are some illustrations I made depicting my favourite children's book, Harriet the Spy. I have written before about how as I child I wanted to desolve myself and become Harriet M. Welsch. I still think about her often, and I wonder at crucial moments: What Would Harriet Do? Harriet is kind of an eccentric. Single-minded in her determination to be a writer, and obsessive about it in that way that only children can be. She's privileged but lonely. She's growing up and it's time for her nanny Ol' Golly to leave her. This happens just when her friends discover her notebook and the secret insights she's made about them and their lives - all of these observations are hilarious, but Harriet is learning that sometimes the truth hurts. She has to work out how to survive all on her own, getting revenge on those that stand in opposition to her, but also winning her friends back. I spent a week eating tomato sandwiches after drawing these. I assumed I'd grow out of this one day. But these loves never leave you completely. As Harriet says: “YOU CAN'T BE TOO OLD TO SPY. EXCEPT IF YOU WERE FIFTY, YOU MIGHT FALL OFF A FIRE ESCAPE, BUT YOU COULD SPY AROUND ON THE GROUND A LOT.” I guess I haven't fallen off of a fire escape yet.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Black Ink - Sketchbook Line Drawing

Some of my latest sketches, made with black ink. My favourite thing might be a tight black line against a loose one. 

A fairly demonic David Lynch.

Roy Orbison. What a champ.


A sulky young Elvis.

Saturday, 1 July 2017


stock from pexels

Words sit in your mouth like stones. Where your tongue should be, dark, glistening, velveteen, there is a pebble. A tongue, or a pink fish with tasting scales, undulating softly like chrysanthemum. Pretty, but I wanted you mute. So each guttural glottal, fricative or uvular phone stutters as it comes, choked by a stone.  I hooked it out and set that white, smooth rock for your teeth to bite. For your jaw to hinge shut. To set your hand to write. Literature.

©Amy Leonard, 2017