Jimmy Liao

In 2011, I bought the book The Sound of Colors by Jimmy Liao. I gave the book to my grandmother, who had started a steep decline into a world of dementia. The book discusses a young girl who is losing the ability to see, which I knew my grandmother would relate to since she was losing the ability to think. At that point she had more self-awareness.

Before I gave the book to Nana, I tried doing an illustration in his style. I picked a cityscape and added Russian onion domes. As a child I loved cityscapes.

I just found it recently. It is interesting to look at now, knowing that I did it before I had any serious knowledge or interest of children's illustration. 

One interesting thing about this practice is that I used out of the box watercolor paints, which I never do any more, and a regular sharpie marker. Now I have more "professional' tools, but it is interesting to use these simpler ones, because that is what children would be familiar with. I remember as a child often finding it unfair that I didn't know and couldn't learn how the artists made their pictures. Even now, it is surprising to learn about techniques not used anymore like  four color printing.

I think there should be picture books for people with dementia or other mental conditions.