If you were a boy named Henri Matisse who lived in a dreary town in northern France where the skies were grayAnd the days were coldAnd you wanted color and lightAnd sun,And your mother, to brighten your days,Painted plates to hang on the wallsWith pictures of meadows and trees,Rivers and birds,And she let you mix the colors of paint…
… And you raised PigeonsWatching their sharp eyes
And red feet,And their colors that changed with the light
As they moved…
… Would it be a surprise that you became
A fine painter who painted
MovementAnd the iridescence of birds?
I decided to try relief printing, which forced me to simplify my shapes and allowed me to focus on the color and composition. I cut the characters and backgrounds out of stiff foam and cardboard, inked them up, made prints, and scanned the results into Photoshop. The approach felt right.