Artist and illustrator Beatriz Martin Vidal draws children in such an incredible way, highlighting their purity and innocence with simple shadows and sharp colors. The arresting colors – the ones that really make your eyes pull the car over – are usually only applied to flowers and other visual accessories, contrasting with the child and his monochrome background in a meaningful way – suggesting connections between youth and vitality while always maintaining a somber undertone about how fleeting all of it is anyway.
This collection is titled “birgit” in Vidal’s gallery of novel illustratons, and here she uses these stunning bright blue flowers to metaphorically encircle the beautiful children. Here they’re drawn in white tank tops with disheveled hair, creating a link to poverty and want – two things a child should never have to experience for herself.
In this first work the flowers cover the little boy’s eyes, stemming from a bandage at the back of his head, creating a blindfold on everything outside his own imagination, protecting him from whatever caused the need for a bandage in the first place.
In the second we see what to me looks like a little girl’s face, although her hair is cut short just past her ears. She sits, eyes closed, holding her face in her hands with eyelids tinted gold, as the bright blue flowers blossom and cascade down her forehead.
In the third work, a little boy stands with his back to us, holding his bunny/sheep stuffed animal close to his chest with his head cast down toward it. The flowers creep up his back, vines growing up from the depths and encircling his tiny frame.
In the last illustration the flowers have almost whisked the whole child away to someplace safer, only her face still peeking through the petals, turned up towards the sky with eyes closed and an expression of gratitude and peace.
See more of Beatriz Martin Vidal’s work on her website here.