Friday, May 5, 2017
Jiro and the Foxwife
The secret to Jiro's new wife, as any Japanese person will tell you, is that she is a were-fox, who turns into a fox at night. This explains her mysterious disappearances as well as her clever, sly behavior. You can see her fox ears and tail on her head disguised as a headdress as well as a paw hidden in her kimono. This is another illustration in the Japanese print-styled set I did for author Jane Yolen's folktale story "The Foxwife."
I have foxes in my urban back yard and not only are they not dressed in kimonos, but they make a lot of noise which sometimes sounds like a human scream, which makes me wonder whether the foxes can be just as angry as Jiro. They also bark and howl which might alarm even a folktale spouse.
Black ink on illustration board, 8" x 5", July 1981. My records show that these illustrations were given to Jane Yolen as a gift. I wonder whether she still has them, or even remembers them.